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Thursday, June 15, 2006

Boy, things have really changed in the past few years when it comes to hops.  Seems like just yesterday that if you had hops reaching a 9% alpha acid, you had some really strong stuff.  Most of my brewing books do not mention Simcoe, Warrior, or Yukama-Magnum, all hops that have an alpha content in the double digits.
I found a nice hops chart at Weekend Brewer that list the hops that they sell along with letting you know if they are bittering or aroma hops.
Also, a nice article from the Philadelphia Inquirer that pertains to hops and microbreweries.  Part of that is reprinted below.
Next week, I hope to start a four post series on how to make your own wine.  I will be more of a beginner's step by step, with some tips on how I make my wine.

Joe Sixpack | Hybrid-hop Simcoe is hot

Philadelphia Inquirer
June 09, 2006
We thought, 'Man, wouldn't it be great to make a beer that would be dominated by Simcoe?

FORGET cascades hops. The newest beer craze is Simcoe.

Cascades, of course, is the classic West Coast hop, the small, vine-grown bud that gives beer its aroma, its bitterness, its spice. For 20 years, the fresh, aromatic, grapefruit-like Cascades virtually defined American-made craft beer, and it still reigns as one of the biggest sellers.

But six years ago, agriculture scientists in Washington State introduced a hybrid called Simcoe, and brewers have been boiling it big time ever since.

Yards Brewing, in Kensington, used it in its reformulated Philly Pale Ale recipe, and watched sales rocket. Troegs Brewing, in Harrisburg, adds it to Nugget Nectar Ale. In Delaware, Dogfish Head Brewing's Sam Calagione said his brewers were using Simcoe before it even had a name, when it was known only as 'Experimental Hop No. 555.' Today, he said, Dogfish Head tosses a 'load' of it into 90 Minute IPA.

Even savvy homebrewers are onto Simcoe. 'There's a latent buzz around it,' said Jason Harris, of Keystone Homebrew Supply in Montgomeryville. 'Simcoe's made a huge impact.'

Simcoe is so hot, Weyerbacher Brewing in Easton just named its newest beer after the plant: Simcoe Double IPA.

Read more at the Philadelphia Inquirer.

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