Shredding whole hops?

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Meatymc
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Shredding whole hops?

Post by Meatymc » Sun Apr 15, 2018 9:04 pm

So, done another Vienna/Northdown smash yesterday - BIAB and into cube so just pitched tonighted (starter from recovered PJ yeast yet again).

Ran late last night so only cleared up late this afternoon. Binning the grain and emptying the hop bags and thought, for no obvious reason, to have a look at the cones (my own home grown hops). Suprised to see so much lovely dark yellow lupulin still sat in the cones so my question is, should I be shredding the cones first - I guess mirroring pelleting, to get best optimisation?

McMullan
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Re: Shredding whole hops?

Post by McMullan » Sun Apr 15, 2018 9:17 pm

What makes you think the desirable compounds haven't been released from the little yellow sacks? If extraction were 100% the hop industry would be a small affair. It's not though. IME whole hops are superior to pellets. The average home brew shop finds it more profitable to supply pellets only. You'll find the best home brew shops offer a wide selection of whole hops :wink: Felt like I went off on one there :lol:

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Re: Shredding whole hops?

Post by scotsloon » Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:19 am

Meatymc wrote:
Sun Apr 15, 2018 9:04 pm
So, done another Vienna/Northdown smash yesterday - BIAB and into cube so just pitched tonighted (starter from recovered PJ yeast yet again).

Ran late last night so only cleared up late this afternoon. Binning the grain and emptying the hop bags and thought, for no obvious reason, to have a look at the cones (my own home grown hops). Suprised to see so much lovely dark yellow lupulin still sat in the cones so my question is, should I be shredding the cones first - I guess mirroring pelleting, to get best optimisation?
I've been blitzing my hops for years then putting them into a hop spider. works well and has the added advantage of keeping the end product that bit clearer.

Meatymc
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Re: Shredding whole hops?

Post by Meatymc » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:49 am

McMullan wrote:
Sun Apr 15, 2018 9:17 pm
What makes you think the desirable compounds haven't been released from the little yellow sacks? If extraction were 100% the hop industry would be a small affair. It's not though. IME whole hops are superior to pellets. The average home brew shop finds it more profitable to supply pellets only. You'll find the best home brew shops offer a wide selection of whole hops :wink: Felt like I went off on one there :lol:
I've no idea - hence the question. Is there a way of checking the 'desirables' have been extracted? The used cones smell very 'hoppy' and (the sacs) look as bright as when they went in (pulled a couple of unused cones out of the freezer to compare). In this brew they've been boiled for 75 minutes so you'd think the oils/aroma would be distinctly less wouldn't you? Or is that not how it works??

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Re: Shredding whole hops?

Post by scuppeteer » Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:31 pm

Exactly how it works I'm afraid. The vast majority of the essential oils are lost in the boil, which is why I favour heavier late hopping and steep hopping.
Even the most efficient coppers will only extract 35%, the rest goes up the chimney.
Lupulin doesn't dissolve very well which is why it still looks bright and the main reason for very hazy hoppy beers.
There is a reason why brewers don't reuse previously boiled hops, otherwise we'd all be doing it.
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Meatymc
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Re: Shredding whole hops?

Post by Meatymc » Tue Apr 17, 2018 10:00 am

Fair points - thanks.

Strangely enough this is my 35th all-grain brew but the first where I've really noticed the 'spent cone condition' post boil. That was really only half the original query as this is the second brew where I'm changing the emphasis with hop additions to predominantly dry hopping.

From what I've read 72 hours seems to be the maximum time for dry hopping before risking 'grassy' notes. So, with this short exposure time, I might shred for the secondary this time and leave as whole cones next - keeping everything else exactly the same - and see what if any difference there is. The potential downside I can see however is I'd be increasing exposure/releasing all the 'vegetable' matter when shredding which might add something 'extra' - particularly if I didn't dry the cones sufficienly at harvest.

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