Best beer aroma - Dry-hopping technique
13 Jan 2021
The brewers have a lot of different techniques and processes to produce the best craft beer. There is plenty of Dry Hopped beers around, however beer lovers have some questions that we would like to help you with an objective answer.
What is Dry Hopping?
Dry Hopping is a brewer’s technique used to increase the aroma of the beer. As its name says, brewer add dry hops to the produced beer after fermentation. Normally adding extra hops to obtain a beer with a very intense aroma.
Hops are normally added during boiling stage to extract the alfa acids (guiltiest to provide bitterness). If a hop is added on the last 5-10 minutes, the aroma could be improved but the beer will lose some of the aromatics.
When the hops are added once the beer is fermented, the hops do not increase the bitter flavour, but they increase the aromatics. This is the dry hopping technique. The brewer let the dry hops to be soaked with beer resulting in a spectacular explosion of aroma. This technique is commonly used with Pale Ale and IPA.
Today, more and more, innovative brewers, use this technique with other beer types and styles to produce fantastic aromatic beers.
Dry hops do not modify the flavour, as they have not been boiled, however, the aroma is one of the main responsible of changing the flavour, meaning that the dry hopped beers will have an amazing extra flavour.
When to add the dry hops to the beer?
There are different opinions on when to add the dry hops to the fermenter: first fermentation, in the middle of fermentation, etc.
All master brewers of our family agree that the appropriate time to add the dry hops is when the primary fermentation has finished completely. Adding the dry hops after that, maximise the exposure without any risk to the volatiles.
How much time it takes to dry hop a beer?
The duration depends a lot of the master brewer experience.
It is true that having the dry hops too much time with the beer, it will change the flavour adding notes of tannic herbs, however it is required to expose the beer several days to extract the aromatics.
The common opinion is to keep the dry hops for at least 24 hours. It is possible to soak the dry hops for longer time with a maximum of 4 days, after 4 days the beer would be impossible to drink. As average, the dry hops are removed from the beer in about 3 days.
When adding more different dry hops, the process might start again. For example, an IPA with three different dry hops, the dry hopping technique must be done at least for 9 days.
The six sense of the expert brewer allows to know exactly the best timing for the dry hopping.
We hope we clarified some of your doubts in regards the dry hopping technique and from now you will enjoy those amazing beverages that our expert family of brewers had prepared for you, with another eyes (and taste)