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Thread: Wild Hops

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    64

    Wild Hops

    A friend found some hops growing wild and picked a couple grocery bags' worth for me to brew with. I figure I'll rinse and dehydrate them just like I did the ones I grew in the garden. But they're wild: I have no idea what sort of hops they are, what they taste like, or anything else. So I'm hoping to get some ideas about what would be a good beer for sampling wild hops.

    I'm rather excited about this: I've been meaning to try some less traditional brewing (I've been thinking about both spruce and heather ales); I figure wild hops are a baby step towards that. I have no idea how much I have, I'm hoping it works out to at least three or four ounces dried, but I'm still new enough to home-grown hops I have trouble estimating weights.

    So I need to make something where the hops are noticeable and prominent, but I don't just want to make a hop bomb. Maybe an ESB? or a generic amber? Anyone else ever done this?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    533
    You could always steep a little of the hops in hot water or a french press to try and get an idea of how they'll turn out.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    2,324
    Quote Originally Posted by maltyapples
    You could always steep a little of the hops in hot water or a french press to try and get an idea of how they'll turn out.
    +1 Or you could always do a One gallon "starter" with 1lb DME to see before you commit to a "full batch".
    The mind is like a beer, it does the most good when it is opened.

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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    Or dry hop a beer you haven't bottled or kegged yet.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    3,695
    I'd try a pretty simple American PA, say 8 lbs 2-row and 1 lb light crystal for 5 gallons. That'll give a fairly neutral base on which to test the hops. I use my homegrown for flavor and aroma additions because there's not enough to get the AAs tested. I use commercial lots for the bittering additions because I can get a pretty good idea of where the overall IBUs will come in.
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