Author Topic: Hop Shelf Life Adjustment?  (Read 863 times)

Offline JKL

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Hop Shelf Life Adjustment?
« on: June 17, 2011, 08:26:41 AM »
I recently brewed an IIPA that Beersmith calculated at 93 IBU's.  I took a gravity reading last night and while it tasted amazing, it doesn't taste anywhere near 93 ibu.  I got to thinking that these hops I used are probably at least 7-8 months old and I had them in my freezer for about a month before I used them.  I bought the 4 varieties from 2 different places online and none of them were vacuum sealed. Of course Beersmith has a shelf life adjustment tool but I never thought about using it until now.   Should I just calculate from harvest time 2010,(last Sept/Oct?) for the months?  I also thought about using an average of the 3 choices; poly/barrier/vacuum, not really knowing how they have been stored? How do you guys adjust your hops ?
-J.K.L. 

Offline mabrungard

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Re: Hop Shelf Life Adjustment?
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2011, 09:37:09 AM »
First of all there is a solubility limit for alpha and iso-alpha acids in wort, and that is around 80 to 90 IBU.  So that might be a contributor. 

The other issue would be the SG of your beer. Since it was an IIPA, the gravity had to be high.  That further reduces the perception of bittering in my opinion.  That is the great thing about high gravity beers, no matter what the brewer does to increase their calculated bitterness, they typically still have modest bittering perception.

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Offline JKL

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Re: Hop Shelf Life Adjustment?
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2011, 10:10:07 AM »
First of all there is a solubility limit for alpha and iso-alpha acids in wort, and that is around 80 to 90 IBU.  So that might be a contributor. 

The other issue would be the SG of your beer. Since it was an IIPA, the gravity had to be high.  That further reduces the perception of bittering in my opinion.  That is the great thing about high gravity beers, no matter what the brewer does to increase their calculated bitterness, they typically still have modest bittering perception.



Thanks for the response.  I had always thought solubility was around 100ibu?  My IIPA actually didn't make it to IIPA status.  I miscalculated my efficiency a bit on my new system and came in shy at 1.073.  "Perception"-wise I'd say I'm in the 70-ish ibu mark.  So to me this beer is pretty balanced for an upper-O.G. IPA.  I'll be brewing a pale ale next week and I'm trying to figure out if I should mess with the A.A. numbers a bit to get in the range I want to be at.  I never have before, maybe I shouldn't start? 
-J.K.L. 

Offline gmwren

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Re: Hop Shelf Life Adjustment?
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2011, 01:29:38 PM »
I use the age adjustment for most additions, particularly after six months. I buy bulk leaf as fresh as possible, vacuum seal, and store in a freezer. Depending on the variety, not much adjustment for the first few months, but some varieties like centennial have a poor shelf life that you might want to account for. Using this technique, I have pulled two year old hops and obtained the results I wanted. No telling what the stuff in your LHBS is going to be like as most is not dated and storage is questionable. As a note, BeerSmith V 1.4 has a bug that adjusts all your hops to what ever date you use for one variety. Haven't tried it in V 2.0.

Offline JKL

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Re: Hop Shelf Life Adjustment?
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2011, 02:28:02 PM »
As a note, BeerSmith V 1.4 has a bug that adjusts all your hops to what ever date you use for one variety. Haven't tried it in V 2.0.

Yep, but what date do you use?  As far as I know, most packages don't have a date on them.  I write the date on them when I get them so I know how long I've had them.  Should I just assume that most hops were probably packaged around harvest time...say September or October?
-J.K.L.

Offline gmwren

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Re: Hop Shelf Life Adjustment?
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2011, 02:53:27 PM »
If you buy in bulk and freeze as I do when the harvest is available, you know the date is as old as September of that year.