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Hop Deterioration

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Goat

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I bought a couple of packets of Hallertau Hallertau pellets rated at 4.6%AA today . Other packets labelled just Hallertau were rated at 1.9%AA and because Im using them for mainly bittering, I went for the stronger.

On discusisg this with the HBS guy, he said that the 1.9% was the 2003 vintage while the 4.6% were 2002 vintage. Anyway, I just plugged the dates into Promash to see what sort of allowances I should make for age:

12month old (best case scenario) storage in air tight foil bags at 5deg goes from 4.6%AA to 3.14% AA

20months (probably more realistic) in the same conditions drops to 2.43%AA

So to get 30IBUs (at 60 mins) I need :
57 g at 4.6%AA
84 g at 3.14%AA
108g at 2.43 %AA

As you can see, theres a huge difference. Does anyone have any experience with the rates of AA loss? (apart from advice to buy fresh hops) Im Not too sure how to handle it from here..
 

Kai

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Can you freeze hops, or will that deteriorate the qualitY?
 

Linz

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Hops should be stored in a fridge as close to freezing as possible(1-2oC). Also in a foil bag if its a glass door fridge, or atleast out of direct sunlight.
Heat and sunlight are the picked hops natural enemy.

Hopefully Doc will have some info after his sojourn to the hop farms
 

Justin

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Hop pellets should be stored in the freezer, in an air tight container, preferably under a blanket of CO2. These are the optimal storage conditions.

JD
 

bonk

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Hi Goat,

by the looks of it, you might need to use both packets to get things to the IBU's you are after. :)

i've used some old hops (and i guess most of us have) without to much concern. I forgot to worry about the deterioration and just chucked them as per my recipe. All worked out well, one of my better beers :)
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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Before you up the hop amounts, consider the beta acids. While alpha acids will decrease even under optimal storage, the hard resins containing the beta acids become more soluble and the beta acids probably make up more and more of the bitterness as the alphas decrease.

That is what Bonk seems to have found out


Jovial Monk
 

Goat

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ahhh.... thanks for the input chaps. Sounds like I've got a very bitter Maerzen in the primary then... :( and a whole lot more to learn !

It was a bit of a cock up brew all round: I tried to do a decoction. Pulled out about 1/3 of the mash and brought it to boil, poured it back into the MT (which was a 50deg up till then) and after a good stir only got it to 63deg ! On pulling some more out to do a second (unplanned) decoction realised that it wasn't getting any hotter because I had run out of gas :eek: After about 45mins of getting more gas, I put some hot water into the MT which got it to about 67 and let it sit for another hour (I'm sure it was problaby way too lateanyway).

Anyway, it was a loverly colour going into the fermenter and very clear so hopefully it won't be too bad...
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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hahahahahaha we all have those brewdays! i would buy a second gas bottle but the big ones are a bit pricy. . .

Will be interested to hear if the Maerzen is very bitter (if it is, just lager it another 4-5 months :)

For comparison, Hopco bought 2002 harvest hop plugs this year, since the 2003 Euro harvest was crap. We noticed they had reduced the AA% by .1% (e..g. from 5.3 to 5.2) We used the same AAs as last year

Jovial Monk
 

Gulf Brewery

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Jovial_Monk said:
While alpha acids will decrease even under optimal storage, the hard resins containing the beta acids become more soluble and the beta acids probably make up more and more of the bitterness as the alphas decrease.
That is what Bonk seems to have found out
Jovial Monk
Almost right Tom

The hard resins contains the oxidised and polymerised versions of the alpha and beta acids (not just the alpha). I haven't seen anywhere in the uni texts where the hard resins become more soluble, but the flavours from them will become more evident as the alpha acid level reduces.

Pedro
 

Goat

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Thanks JM and Pedro - interesting comments.

I assume that Hopco would store the hops in a way that provides optimum retention & quality; chilled, CO2/vaccum packed etc. Hopefully not the same as having been trucked across the Nullabor then repackaged in air then put in a fridge - (perverse - but wishfull thinking perhaps)

Pretty impressive that it dropped only .1% though
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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Hopco, or their suppliers do a good job, when I open a 5K brick of pellet hops it sort of sighs and collapses a bit, so I guess they are stored under positive pressure of inert gass. And they are wrapped in foil, not plastic.

Jovial Monk
 

bonk

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well goat, your not the only one, used up the last of my P.O.R hops which are old and some saaz which is old tonight. guess them beta boys did the job, a nice bitter taste already in the fermenter :)
 
J

Jovial_Monk

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hehehehehehe POR hops

some hate them, some love them

I think the key to enjoying POR or other high alpha hop is to just use them to add no more than 20IBU to the beer, more than that and their bitterness can be harsh. POR is said to have a nice aroma.

Jovial Monk
 

bonk

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yeah, i was feeling brave thats why i posted that i used POR hops ;) and yeah, i only used them to about 20 ibu.
 

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