Our Hops

Hop History

 

 

 

 

 

Hops were traditionally grown in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast States, but Prohibition and disease caused the downfall of the industry and production moved west. While the majority of the hops used in brewing come from the Pacific NW and Europe, we hope to change that soon for PA breweries by giving them a local option! Pennsylvania is well suited to grow hops, and PA hops will have slightly different characteristics compared to hops grown elsewhere (similar to the idea of Terroir for grapes).

We choose the hops we grow based on a variety of characteristics; including disease resistance, total oil content, alpha acids, beta acids, flavors, aromas and quality during storage to name a few. We are growing Cascade, Chinook, Nugget, Comet and Cluster (both “early” and “late” types).

 

 

Cascade

A very popular U.S. variety, with a moderate bitterness value and floral and citrus aroma. Cascade is often used in pale ales, IPA, porters, and wheat beers and is nice for dry hopping. AA: 4.5-7.0%, BA: 4.5-7.0%.

%

Percent of total hop production at SBH

 

Chinook

 

A high alpha acid, yet dual purpose, hop with smooth bitterness and full flavor. It has spicy, piney, and grapefruit tones and has an herbal, almost smoky character when used as an aroma hop. Chinook is often used in pale ales, lagers, IPAs, and heavy bodied dark ales. AA: 12.0-14.0%, BA: 3.0-4.0%.

%

Percent of total hop production at SBH

 

Nugget

 

A great dual purpose bittering hop with a spicy, herbal aroma. It is commonly used in pale ales, stouts, and IPAs. AA: 12.0-14.5%, BA: 4.0-6.0%.

 

%

Percent of total hop production at SBH

 

Comet

 

An heirloom variety developed from a cross between an English Sunshine and native North American male hop. It is an all-purpose hop that is used for bittering or late additions and imparts a “raspy” or “wild American” bitterness. It has unique zesty grapefruit, pineapple, and orange aroma notes. An early version of a “C” hop. Works well with American Ales, IPAs, and Lagers. AA: 9.0 – 11.0%, BA: 4.0 – 6.1%

 

 

%

Percent of total hop production at SBH

Cluster

Cluster (early and late varieties) are being grown as a trial. Cluster is one of the oldest American heirloom hop to be used in commercial production. Cluster probably came to be via hybridization of varieties imported by Dutch and English settlers with a North American native male hop. It is a classic all-purpose “C” hop with intense citrus and passion fruit aromas. Useful for a wide variety of beer styles, including Stouts and Barleywine. AA: 5.5-8.5%, BA: 4.5-5.5%.

Trial

Drink Local. Hop Local.