Saturday, April 23, 2011

The curious case of the dry hops

I found myself racking a red seal clone I brewed a few weeks back into secondary this afternoon. And it occurred to me that I need to hit up the secondary fermentation with some dry hops. Dry hopping is a pretty simple process, just add hops to the secondary ferementer after racking. People talk about dry hopping like its some sort of an art form, but it is a simple procedure used to hit the wort with one last blast of fresh hop goodness. If done right it will add hop aroma with a very fresh quality. If done wrong it can introduce harsh grassy and vegetal notes to the finished product.

Brynildson (of Firestone-Walker) says that three to four days of dry hopping is optimal. Cilurzo (of Russian River) believes the appropriate time to be 7 to 14 days. Regardless, keep your dry hopping to less than 2 weeks and you will be good to go.

How do you hop?



James said...

I typically use whole hops for 7 days at room temperature in a corny keg. I put the hops in a sanitized muslin bag, weight them, and dangle them in the keg with sanitized fishing line.

I've tried dry hopping in primary, but it wasn't nearly as effective.

HolzBrew said...


It sounds like your dry hops are submerged, where mine are usually floating on the surface. I suspect your method benefits from increased surface area contact. I'll have to give this a try sometime.