Hop-epedia Project: Tettnanger

Next up in the Hop-epedia Project: Tettnanger hops (known to some as Tettnang and on the streets as Triple T). Now, beerbecue is a pretty patriotic blog. So, we harbor bit of disdain for titles and nobility. That is why we are just now getting around to Tettnanger, our first “noble hop” in the Project.

The term “noble hops” refers to 4 different hops traditionally grown in continental Europe: Tettnanger, Hallertauer, Spalter, and Saaz. They’re all known for their authoritarian sounding names, aromatics, low alpha and beta acids (with around a 1:1 ratio), high humulene, low myrcene, and poor storage.

There are (sort of) two types of Tettnanger: (1) The variety that originates from the south Germany city of Tettnang; and (2) the variety that does not. The German version has a mild, slightly spicy, and floral character and is similar to Saaz grown in the Czech Republic. The others, which many consider to not be technically “noble”, are grown in Switzerland, the United States, and Australia (perhaps elsewhere). They are looked down upon as a bit more coarse and not as “fine”, perhaps because of their higher myrcene content and the soil difference from Tettnang, Germany.

Ahem. NOT just soil. It’s “le terroir”!

In fact, there is a bit of a controversy about US Tettnanger. The allegation is that some hops claimed to be US Tettnanger are from Swiss Tettnanger stock, which were actually Fuggle, or derived from Fuggle, rather than the actual landrace (naturally developed) German Tettnanger. The reasons cited for this scandal range anywhere from a dastardly, conspiratorial coverup by Anheuser-Busch (Fuggles have higher yields) to merely mistakenly cultivating the US version from the Swiss Tettnanger rootstock. You can read more about this here and here, but one of the dudes who discovered this was actually so pissed-off that he decided to create a Tettnanger clone that would grow better in the US: Santiam.

In any case, it appears to me that US Tettnanger is generally different from Fuggle, but I guess just beware of Americans bearing Tettnangers.

Some Tettnanger Beers (noted if known to be Tettnang Tettnanger)
Mikkeller Tettnanger Single Hop (Thanks to thisiswhyimdrunk for sending this my way).
Samuel Adams Boston Lager (Tettnang)
Samuel Adams Octoberfest (Tettnang)
OK, so Sam Adams uses Tettnanger like they’re going out of style: Old Fezziwig, Noble Pils, Double Bock…
North Coast Scrimshaw Pilsner
Saranac Summer Ale and Oktoberfest
Most Gordon Biersch beers use Hallertau, Tettnang, or both.
Red Hook ESB
Otter Creek Otoberfest

German Tettnanger Stats
Yield: 1014-1235 lbs/acre
Alpha Acid (%): 3 – 6
Beta Acid (%): 3 – 4
Cohumulone (% of AA): 20 – 25
Total Oils (%v/w): 0.5 – 0.9
– Myrcene (% of whole oil): 20 – 20
– Humulene (% of whole oil): 18 – 23
– Caryophyllene (% of whole oil): 6 – 11
– Farnesene (% of whole oil): 16 – 24
Stability in storage: Fair

US Tettnanger Description From USA Hops Variety Manual
Tettnang is a traditional German land-race variety known for its noble aroma that is pleasant and slightly spicy. It remains well established in the Tettnang growing region of Germany, and is also grown in Oregon and Washington. American grown Tettnang is reported to have slightly higher myrcene levels than its German counterpart.”

Yield (kilos per hectare) 1,000 – 1,500

Yield (lbs per acre) 900 – 1,340
Alpha Acids 4.0 – 5.0%
Beta Acids 3.0 – 4.0%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 20 – 25%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 0.4 – 0.8
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 36 – 45%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 6.0 – 7.0%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 18 – 23%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) 5.0 – 8.0%
Storage (% alpha acids remaining after 6 months storage at 20° C) 55 – 60%
Possible Substitutions German Tettnang, Spalt, Spalt Select, 

Fuggle (US) Description From USA Hops Variety Manual
This classic English aroma variety has long been grown in both Oregon and Washington. It has a typical English aroma and contributes a balanced bitterness. Fuggle is very suitable for English and American-style Ales.

Yield (kilos per hectare) 1,200 – 1,800
Yield (lbs per acre) 1,070 – 1,600
Alpha Acids 4.0 – 5.5%
Beta Acids 1.5 – 2.0%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 25 – 32%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 0.7 – 1.2
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 40 – 50%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 6.0 – 10%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 20 – 26%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) 4.0 – 5.0%
Storage (% alpha acids remaining after 6 months storage at 20° C) 60 – 65%
Possible Substitutions English Fuggle, Styrian Golding, 

Santiam Description From USA Hops Variety Manual
Released in 1997, Santiam was bred from Tettnang, Hallertau, and a cultivar derived from Cascade. Its resin, oil, and flavor profile are similar to Tettnang, but it has the lower Cohumulone of Hallertau.

Yield (kilos per hectare) 1,600 – 2,350
Yield (lbs per acre) 1,400 – 2,100
Alpha Acids 5.0 – 7.0%
Beta Acids 6.0 – 8.0%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 22 – 24%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 1.3 – 1.5
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 27 – 36%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 7.0 – 8.0%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 23 – 26%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) 13 – 16%
Storage (% alpha acids remaining after 6 months storage at 20° C) Average
Possible Substitutions Tettnang, Spalt, Spalt Select

Hop-epedia Project: El Dorado

Next up on the Hop-epedia Project: El Dorado hops. El Dorado are pretty new and limited. I read that the entire 2011 crop was grown on about 3.5 acres. Perhaps the 2012 yield will be a little bigger, but they’ll probably still be a little hard to come by. I had some recently in Flying Dog’s El Dorado single hop, and I had to sing their praises.

El Dorado is a dual purpose hop. It has a high alpha acid content (around the range of Super Galena or CTZ), which means they can impart plenty of bitterness. As for aroma and flavor, El Dorado hops are big and juicy. I picked up significant orange citrus, tropical fruits, a little resin, and an almost hop candy character. Others have noted pear, watermelon candy (jolly ranchers), stone fruits, and even fresh cut grass (all of which I can understand, except for the lawn clippings). As for the bitterness, in the case of Flying Dog, it head fakes you into bracing for a bitter blast, then it finishes with a nice, mellow bitterness, despite being high in cohumulone.

I haven’t been able to hunt down the lineage, but as far as I can tell, El Dorado is the only hop with a twitter and facebook account. This is a fascinating development. If it plays out, it could get interesting. Who wouldn’t want to see hop vaguebooking, bitching, and updates on mundane hop activities?

Some El Dorado beers:
Flying Dog El Dorado Single Hop – I got a growler of this from Whole Paycheck. It’s good.
New Belgium The Trip X (’72 Eldorado Fresh Hop IPA)
Firestone Walker Helldorado
– An Imperial Blonde or Blonde Barleywine. Firestone claims the El Dorado hops are pretty far in the background.
Toppling Goliath El Dorado IPA
Blue Monkey El Dorado – Blond Ale from Nottingham England. Apparently, in 2010, only 400 pounds of El Dorado hops were sent out of the US. Good hustle, Blue Monkey!
Portsmouth Brewery Cruising Down Crenshaw in my El Dorado – A brewery-only Dirty Blond cask beer. Clearly the best name, though.

Stats from CLS Farms (the developer of El Dorado)
Yield (kilos per hectare) 2,650 – 2,880
Yield (lbs per acre) 2,300 – 2,500
Alpha Acids 14 – 16%
Beta Acids 7.0 – 8%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 28 – 33%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 2.5 – 2.8
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 55 – 60%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 6.0 – 8%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 10 – 15%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) 0.1%
Storage: Good
Possible Substitutions: ??

As always, comments are welcome!

Hop-epedia Project: Simcoe

Next up on the Hop-epedia Project: Simcoe® hops. Known as “Cascade on Steroids”, Simcoe is a dual-purpose variety. Its relatively high alpha acid content means it imparts plenty of bitterness; but its low cohumulone content translates to more of a clean bitterness than high-cohumulone hops. Myrcene constitutes a very high percentage of its essential oil content, which means…oh, hell if I know…but it’s somehow responsible for the aroma. And it has a nice aroma/flavor, which is why all the cool kids these days are using Simcoe.

I got angel poke, bennies, kentucky blue, and some High-Myrcene Simcoe.

Generally, one will find that Simcoe imparts a woody/piney and citrusy quality. To a lesser extent, there can also be a certain spiceyness to them at times (much like Cascade). Also, I often pick up the smell of peaches and apricots in Simcoe beers. I thought I was crazy, but after a Sierra Nevada Hoptimum-related Twitter exchange with DrinkBlogRepeat, and after trolling homebrewtalk.com, I discovered that I’m not alone. Mmmm, I love me a ripe peach…

I have also heard you can get passionfruit from Simcoe, but I don’t know what the hell a passion fruit tastes like. And Whole Paycheck isn’t getting them in for another couple weeks. I will report back if I find one; but, in the meantime, they look like this:

Of unknown planetary origin.

Some Simcoe beers:
Bells HopSlam is dry-hopped to high heaven with Simcoe. I always get a huge, intoxicating peach aroma.
Sierra Nevada Hoptimum uses Simcoe (in addition to their super-secret proprietary varieties) late in the boil and to dry hop.
Lagunitas Hop Stoopid – Lagunitas allegedly released their recipe for this, and it includes Simcoe as a late addition and to dry hop.
Lagunitas Maximus is speculation on my part, but several homebrew clone recipes call for Simcoe in the dry hop.
Weyerbacher Double Simcoe is solely Simcoe. This one is curious, though. It has a significant malt base with a distinct sweet, caramel flavor, so it is not hugely hop forward for an American IPA. No peaches, but there is definitely citrus, pine, and a tropical fruit character (perhaps this is the elusive passionfruit).
Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA
Peak Organic Simcoe Spring
Snake River Brewery Pako’s IPA
Fat Head’s Head Hunter (I need to get my hands on this)
Firetstone Walker Union Jack bitters and dry hops with Simcoe (amongst other hops).
Firestone Walker Double Jack dry hops with Simcoe (amongst other hops).

Specs from USA Hops variety manual
Simcoe® (YCR 14 cv.) is a bittering/aroma variety bred by Yakima Chief Ranches and released in 2000. It is used for its bittering properties and aroma qualities that impart a unique, pine-like aroma. It is very popular in American style Ales.

Yield (kilos per hectare) 1,905 – 2,240
Yield (lbs per acre) 1,700 – 2,000
Alpha Acids 12 – 14%
Beta Acids 4.0 – 5%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 15 – 20%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 2.0 – 2.5
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 60 – 65%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 5.0 – 8%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 10 – 15%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) 0.0%
Storage (% alpha acids remaining after 6 months storage at 20° C) Good
Possible Substitutions: Summit, Magnum

Hop-epedia Project: Centennial Hops

Next up on the Hop-epedia Project: Centennial Hops. Centennial is an aroma-type hop that is also used for bittering. Yet another hoppy brainchild of the USDA (see lineage below in Hop USA specs), its versitility in different beer styles, resistance to disease and fungus, and moderate storagability make it pretty popular. Along with Cascade and Columbus, it is one of the “Three Cs”.

Centennial hops are known as the “Super Cascade” for their higher bittering capacity, but similar aroma/flavor profile: floral, citrus, and slightly spicy character. But the flavor and aroma comparisons between Centennial and Cascade are all over the place. Some claim Centennial is not quite as floral as Cascade. Others claim that they are not quite as citrusy. And I’ll be damned if I don’t taste a bit of pine when I crack open a Two-Hearted or a Centennial IPA (two Centennial hop beers). Ugh. Who knows? What’s the fucking point?

Oh shit! It just got all existential up in here.

Although, I will say that once the Two-Hearted and Centennial IPA stop being all up in your grill and warm-up a bit, any pine fades and the floral and citrus come out.

Indeed, Centennial and Cascade are often substituted for one another or used in tandem, but how are they distinguishable? Centennials are higher in alpha acid, so they impart more bitterness. Both can be grapefruity, but I usually find Cascade to be more so (there may be disagreement here). I find Cascade to be slightly more piney. And I think Centennials are a little more floral. I have even seen some rare bitching on homebrew forums about Centennial being too floral (I have never heard that said about Cascade). I even heard of someone saying that Two-Hearted reminds her of a hair salon. I can infer from this that I have been going to the wrong hair salons, and that Centennial has a substantial floral character.

If you are looking for substitutions, try Amarillo or, obviously, Cascade. I have also seen that, by the numbers, a mix of 70% Cascade and 30% Columbus will have a similar profile. This would make some sense as the Columbus would boost the bittering alpha acids and could impart a slight pungent kick needed to super-fy the Cascade.

As always with the Hop-epedia Project, comments and additions are encouraged.

Some Centennial Beers
Bell’s Two-Hearted
Founders Centennial IPA
Sierra Nevada Northern Hemisphere Harvest (Centennial for bittering and Cascade and Centennial for finishing)
Sierra Nevada Celebration (Centennial bittering and Cascade and Centennial for finishing and dry-hopping)
Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine (includes Cascade and Chinook as well)

Specs from USA Hops variety manual
Centennial is an aroma variety that was released in 1990. It was derived from three-quarters Brewer’s Gold with minor contributions from Fuggle, East Kent Golding and others. It is among the most popular varieties for U.S. craft brewers and is sometimes referred to as a super Cascade.

Alpha Acids 9.5 – 11.5%
Beta Acids 3.5 – 4.5%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 29 – 30%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 1.5 – 2.5
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 45 – 55%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 5.0 – 8.0%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 10 – 18%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) < 1.0%
Storage (% alpha acids remaining after 6 months storage at 20° C) 60 – 65%
Possible Substitutions Cascade, Amarillo

Hop-epedia Project: Nugget Hops

Next up in the Hop-epedia Project: Nugget hops. These are a common bittering hop, but some use them later in the boil, or for dry hopping, for the flavor and aroma they impart. The flavor and aroma are generally pungent, herbal, and spicy, much like the Columbus hop. Although, Columbus hops have a higher alpha acid content (bringing more bitterness to the beer), and Nugget hops lose less flavor and aroma from their essential oils over time due to their better storage stability.

Their similarity is no surprise, however, as apparently Nugget and Columbus hops share the same mother: Brewers Gold. I guess this begs the question…

I bet it's that man hop-whore USDA 63015M.

I am not a flavor and aroma chemist, but it appears from my research that Nugget hops have a relatively high percentage of myrcene (an organic compound and component of hops’ essential oils). This apparently contributes to its pungent, herbal, and sometimes woody aroma.

In your professional opinion, as an aroma chemist, is it or isn't it true that: He who blamed it flamed it?

Many beers use Nugget as bittering hops, however, Tröegs also uses them for flavor and aroma in a couple beers. In HopBack Amber Ale and Nugget Nectar, after the wort is boiled with Nugget hops (among other hops) it is strained through whole flower Nugget hops on the way to the fermenter. Then, Nugget Nectar is additionally dry-hopped with Nugget hops.

Once you wade through the tropical fruit and citrus hop character, you can definitely catch the herbal and spicy qualities. Also, some people mention a cedar or woody character to Nugget Nectar, this is also probably attributable to the Nugget hops.

Additionally, Green Flash IPA uses Nugget (with Summit). And I think Mikkeller also put out a Nugget single hop beer.

As always with the Hop-epedia Project, comments and additions are encouraged.

Specs From USA Hops Variety Manual
Nugget is a high alpha variety released in 1983 from the U.S.D.A. breeding program in Oregon. It is characterized by a mild herbal aroma, a low proportion of cohumulone, and good storage stability. It is used by brewers both for bittering and for its aroma profile. Nugget is one of the most widely grown varieties in Oregon and also has significant acreage in Washington State.

Alpha Acids 11.5 – 14.0%
Beta Acids 4.2 – 5.8%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 22 – 26%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 1.8 – 2.2
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 48 – 55%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 7.0 – 9.0%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 16 – 19%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) < 1.0%
Storage (% alpha acids remaining after 6 months storage at 20° C) 76%
Possible Substitutions Galena, CTZ, Magnum

Hop-epedia Project: Columbus Hops

This is the first post in the Hop-epedia Project, where we explore different types of hops, their distinguishing characteristics, and some beers that exemplify them.  First up is Columbus hops.

Columbus hops are dual-purpose, meaning they are used for bringing bitterness to beer (balancing out the sweetness) and for imparting the hop’s aroma and flavor. Due to a now-settled intellectual property slapfight, Columbus hops are less commonly known as Tomahawk. This is unfortunate, because clearly Tomahawk is way more badass sounding that the capital of Ohio (and beerbecue is not too fond of Ohio State).

Columbus hops give you a pretty strong aroma and distinct flavor. It is often described as herbal, earthy, spicy, particularly pungent, and, to a lesser extent, citrusy. In fact, its flavor and aroma may remind some that the hop is in the same family as pot (the Cannabaceae family). And of course, beerbecue’s knowledge of this smell is entirely second-hand.

You may also hear references to the Three “C’s”. Columbus is one of them, and the other two are Cascade and Centennial, which generally have more of a citrusy and floral character.

One of the beers that exemplifies the Columbus hop is Avery’s Hog Heaven Barleywine-Style Ale. I have actually heard that the only reason they called this a barleywine-style ale is because nobody had invented term “Double IPA” yet. This thing is a huge hop bomb that lays waste to your tongue like a Mongol horde sewing salt in the fields, poisoning wells, and leaving no eye open to weap for the dead. It is very pungent and resinous, with a fair bit of citrus character. And according to Avery, they only use Columbus hops in this brew.

Update: Oskar Blues Deviant Dale’s exemplifies the Columbus hop. You can’t even be in the same room with this beer without being assaulted by Columbus Hops. This is one of my favorite IPAs. Link to my full review/love letter.

Other beers which feature the hop prominently include: Shelter Pale by Dogfish Head (which may be draft only now); Pako’s IPA by Snake River Brewing; although Lagunitas doesn’t reveal their hop content, I swear Hop Stoopid has them; Bear Republic Racer “5”; Green Flash Hop Head Red and West Coast IPA.

As always, feel free to leave comments, insights on aroma and flavor, and beer examples.

Specs From USA Hops Variety Manual (For Columbus, Tomahawk, Zeus)
These three super high alpha varieties are often grouped together and referred to as CTZ. Each of these varieties has alpha acid content of between 14.5-16.5% and share the same female parent as Nugget. Originally bred for their high alpha value, they have also become popular for their oil profile.

Alpha Acids 14.5 – 16.5%
Beta Acids 4.0 – 5.0%
Cohumulone (% of alpha acids) 28 – 32%
Total Oils (Mls. per 100 grams dried hops) 2.0 – 3.0
Myrcene (as % of total oils) 40 – 50%
Caryophyllene (as % of total oils) 9.0 – 11%
Humulene (as % of total oils) 12 – 18%
Farnesene (as % of total oils) < 1.0%
Storage (% alpha acids remaining after 6 months storage at 20° C) 52%
Possible Substitutions Galena, Chinook, Nugget