Brew Dudes

Homebrewing blog and resource

Galaxy Hops SMaSH Beer Tasting

When we asked our viewers on YouTube to vote for hops for us to brew with, the third place winner of our SMaSH beer brewing schedule was Galaxy hops. The supporters of this variety shouldn’t feel bad about its place in the voting – Waimea got no votes at all. Eventually we’ll brew with the unpopular Waimea hops, but until then, let’s dive into this Galaxy hops SMaSH beer tasting video!

Galaxy Hops SMaSH Beer Tasting Notes

First off, this Australian hop variety packs a strong aroma. It smelled really great right out of the package. Although they weren’t as pungent as Equinox hops, the Galaxy hops were bolder than both Jarrylo and Mandarina Bavaria.

In the finished beer, we picked up a big floral mixed with a mango aroma. Mike picked up some darker fruit aromas before finally specifying it as being reminiscent of a very ripe mango.

As we tasted the SMaSM beer, the flavor hit us as a powerful tropical bomb with slight citrus notes. Even though we bittered with this hop as a part of the recipe, the bitterness was not sharp nor did it stick around for a long time in the aftertaste.

Mike called the hop profile as soft. When I asked him what he meant by that, he said that the oils of this hop were not harsh and not clingy. They were very much focused on the flavor of the beer.

Final Thoughts

Galaxy hops are a variety that is all about the flavor and aroma of the tasting experience. Because of that, we fully understand why people adore this hop. Tasting one of the last bottles from this batch, the darker fleshy fruit flavors, the passion fruit flavors are really coming through.

This variety is a great one for use in a single hop showcase. At first glance, we felt that Equinox is a similar hop but Galaxy does not have a green pepper aspect that Equinox does, which can be unpleasant in high doses.

Check out Galaxy if you haven’t already. Try them as a late addition in an IPA. In big doses, the hop really expresses itself well.

Thanks for reading and please comment below. We hope you learned something from our Galaxy hop SMaSH beer tasting – Brew ON!

Mandarina Bavaria Hops – Profile and SMaSH Tasting

When we presented to our YouTube audience a chance to vote for the next hop to brewing in the SMaSH* format, the one that came in second place was Mandarina Bavaria hops. The whole voting idea came from someone placing in the comments of one of our homebrew tasting videos a request to brew a one gallon batch using this particular variety.

Because of that little mention, we started the whole exotic hop tasting and learning experience again.
Like we did with Jarrylo hops, this post will be a combination of sharing online research and real life, first hand tasting notes. Many of the hop profiles we have on the blog have separate pages for the tastings. Rather than have two posts, we’re keeping all the awesome hop information in one place. Watch this video to see how our beer turned out:

First of all, the online research took some time due to many of the good sources of information being in German. Google Translate was helpful in most regards but there were still some words that I had to make sense of myself. Here’s what we gathered from a few of the websites from the land of Chocolate.

One of Those Special Flavor Hops

Mandarina Bavaria is one of three “special flavor hops” that were developed by the Hop Research Institute at Hull, Germany. In addition to the sweet lady Mandarina, the other two hops are:

  • Hallertau Blanc
  • Huell Melon

These three hop varieties all have names that telegraph their flavor and aroma properties. Seems like to me that these were 3 of many experiments, trying to bring more flavor emphasis to their offerings. It makes you think about the ones that weren’t so good. While it’s wonderful to wonder, we shall be brewing up SMaSH beers of the other two at some point in the future.

Mandarina Bavaria Hops High Level Specs

Origin: Germany. This variety was added to the breeding yard in 2008 and released to the world in 2012. It was bred from Cascade and an undisclosed male from the Institute’s breeding program
Aroma: The German descriptors were hoppy, fruity, fresh, mandarin, and citrus flavor. We got some tangerine, Clementine, and lime flavors. Lastly, one source listed bubblegum as a flavor.
Alpha Acid: 7% – 10%
Typical Usage: This hop should be used late in the boil.
Beer Styles: Wheat beers – Mike wants to use it in an American orange wheat beer. In addition, Mandarina Bavaria would be a good variety to blend with other hops in an IPA like this one.

SMaSM Beer Notes

When I took a whiff of the hops out of the bag did not reveal much. These hop pellets were not particularly pungent.

The finished beer at bottling had an underwhelming aroma and taste. It did not cut through much of what I was detecting as malt-derived.

Finally, the beer has aged well over time. It makes for a refreshing beer with some subtle orange citrus notes.

*Single Malt and Single Hop

Jarrylo Hops – Profile and SMaSH Tasting

These Brew Dudes have written a good number of hop profiles over the years. Take a look at our Hop category link over on the right if you don’t believe us. With all of that writing, the one thing we have never done is written up a post that shares our research but also shares our own experience with the hop. This Jarrylo hops profile is attempting to do just that.

This video has our tasting notes of a SMaSH beer that we brewed last month with Jarrylo. Watch this and read the more detailed information below:

The Name

First off, what is up this name? According to the American Dwarf Hop Association, these hops are named after the Slavic god of vegetation, fertility and springtime – Jarilo.

From the ADHA, we learned that the pronunciation is one with a soft “g” sound like in the word “giraffe” or “jail” rather than a “y” sound like in the word “yellow”. Although there is an alternative spelling of the god that starts with a “y” (Yarilo), that’s not what they went with. No matter how you want to pronounce it, we can all agree it is an improvement from its non-brand name: ADHA 881.

Hop Type

Jarrylo hops are a dwarf hop variety and were cultivated from the same hop association that brought us Summit hops and Azacca hops. These varieties have come from the practice of growing hops in a more sustainable and environmentally friendly way. The low trellis, dwarf hop movement is an interesting one and worth checking out. On top of it all, homebrewers get more varieties to brew with.

Jarrylo Hops High Level Specs

Origin: USA – their parentage include Summit hops and an unbranded ADHA hop. For those of you keeping score at home, their mom was Summit and their dad was ADHA 75 – 2.

Aroma: The online sources claim that they have notes of banana, pear and orange. Others include grassy, spicy and fruit. We detected blackberry and maybe some peach too.

Alpha Acid: 15 – 17%

Typical Usage: It is listed as dual purpose, probably because the alpha acids are in the high range. We think these hops are better for a flavor addition.

Beer Styles: Pale Ales, Saisons and Belgian ale. Jarrylo hops would go well as a complement to other hops that have different aroma and taste profiles. Due to their fruity flavors, they will go well with earthy or piney flavored hops.

SMaSH Beer Notes

If you watch the video, we taste a one gallon batch of this SMaSH beer. In addition to this tasting video, we made a video of the brew day for this beer.

To brew something like the SMaSH we tasted so that you can learn more about Jarrylo hops, follow these tips:

  • Use one pale malt. You can use an American two-row malt or a pale English malt.
  • Add the hop to different times in the boil.
    • Use a little bit at the beginning
    • Most at the end
    • Save some to dry hop
  • Use a clean or neutral yeast strain
    • We use Safale US-05
  • Taste with an open mind and clean palate

In conclusion, we hope you enjoyed and learned something about this hop variety. If you have had experience with this hop, please leave a comment below.

Most of all, Brew ON!

New Age Hop Pale Ale Tasting Notes

Brewing beer for an event with family and/or friends can be a trying experience. Brewing something for the crowd will enjoy while keeping it interesting for yourself or your more beer appreciative friends can be a tough balancing act. This week, we taste and discuss John’s latest approach to a New Age Hop Pale Ale that presents strong hop flavors and aromas with minimal bitterness.

Since there are so many hops to chose from these days, it can be a dizzying decision.

The category of hoppy beers is so open now.

Classic resinous bitter beer? Yep, you can brew that.

American ‘C’ hop profile as as citrus and pine monster? Sure – brew it.

New Age fruity hop gravy bombs? Of course, who isn’t brewing one of those?

9% in a beer that should be 6%? (OK, maybe this one is a pet peeve of mine to be discussed in a different post).

Not to be outdone with these tough choices, John decided an American Pale Ale would be a good choice to put out for some friends at a causal gather at the house. He wanted to brew something that would keep the widest range of folks coming back for more so he chose a tropical fruit flavor forward, new age hop based Pale Ale.

This beer pours a clean yellow with nice white head. The aroma was decidedly fruit forward, mostly tropical with a backing of citrus. The bitterness was subdued but it could have been tweaked a bit (see note below). Overall, it was a winning beer that many people liked and enjoyed. We didn’t kick the keg but it did kick with only a few short pints a week after the party.

New Age Hop Pale Ale Recipe
Original Gravity: 1.050
Final Gravity: 1.010

Grain bill:
10 lbs Maris Otter pale malt
1 lbs Bohemian Pilsner

Mill grains into mash tun and mash at 152°F for 60 mins.

Collect 6.5 gallons of wort into your brew kettle for a 60 minute boil.

Add these hops at these amount at these times to go in the boil.

.5 oz Simcoe hops – 60 mins
.5 oz Simcoe hops – 30 mins
1 oz Chinook hops – 15 mins

(1 Whirlfloc tablet – 15 mins)

1 oz Centennial hops – 5 mins
1 oz Cascade hops -5 mins
1 oz Equinox hops – Flameout
1 oz Citra hops – Flameout

Chill to 68°F and transfer wort to your fermentation vessel

Pitch yeast – I used 1 packet of Safale 05 and 1 packet of Safale 004

Ferment for two weeks. With 4 days to go in fermentation, added 1 oz Citra hops to dry hop before kegging.

Notes: I thought the Simcoe hops that were added early in the boil could be reduced. It wasn’t unpleasant but if I were to brew this batch again, I would reduce the Simcoe hops bittering charge to a quarter of an ounce at 60 minutes and move the Chinook addition to 30 minutes to see if the fruity flavors popped even more.

BREW ON!

Brew Dudes Homebrew Swap Exchange 10

This post is a little late but Summer is coming to a close and we’ve been busy. Actually, I have been busy working out the kinks in my brew process and getting some brewing on… But all that’s a story for a different post and video. This weeek is a homebrew swap from Matthew in PA!!! He sent us two interestingly flavored beers. Check it out!

The first beer we tasted was an Orange flavored Kolsch. Now to be honest I love orange flavor in my wheat beers. I was a tad apprehensive about it in a Kolsch. This beer demonstrates that a great fermentation can break through most weird ideas and still be great. Drinkable beer wins all the time in my book. The light malt and hop character in this beer really balanced well with the orange flavoring. We really enjoyed it. The only detractor was that it wasn’t very Kolsch like. This is likely due to the lack of Koslch yeast in the ferment. But that doesn’t matter really. When a beer is great and easy to drink… its great regardless of the label on it.

The second beer was a chocolate cherry porter. Of course, I have commented that Porter is often the “toilet bowl” beer style. The one that no one can leave alone and just brew porter. If you are going to doctor up a Porter you can’t go wrong however but putting some chocolate in there. This beer had a noticable cocoa nose and flavor. John commented that the cocoa addition even had a hot cocoa like mouthfeel effect. Still dry and crisp like a beer, but the cocao powder was hitting the right receptors on his tongue to make him think of hot chocolate in the winter time. I would have liked this beer to be a bit bigger and bolder. The cherry didn’t really come through. Which is tough to do without getting a cough syrup thing going on. Overall it was a decent beer with a solid English Brown Porter background. It was certainly worthy of conversation.

Big thanks to Matthew for sending us his brews. We are thinking about the logistics of the next swap so stay tuned if you want to trade some beers again.

Cheers and BREW ON!

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