I have been growing hops in my backyard for many years now. Although I need to dedicate time and effort to make sure the plants survive and produce cones, I feel it’s worth it.

In years past, I have harvested hops from many different plants and used only the best ones for a “harvest ale”. This year, since I have so many mature plants that are producing a bounty of hops, I have decided to brew up SMaSH of every variety I have. Here’s the first one of the season – this is my homegrown Chinook hops SMaSH beer.

Simple Recipe

With just over 10 ounces of dried hop cones to use, I built this recipe to showcase the hops. I thought one malt would do the trick.

For a 5 gallon batch.

10 pounds of Crisp Maris Otter Malt

2 ounces of homegrown Chinook hops at 60 minutes to go in the boil
4 ounces of homegrown Chinook hops at 10 minutes to go in the boil
4 ounces of homegrown Chinook hops at flameout/whirlpool for 20 minutes

1 packet of Safale 04 Dry English Yeast

Brewing Details:
Mashed at 155°F
Boiled for 60 minutes
Fermented at 68°F for 7 days
Racked to keg and carbonated

Original Gravity: 1.050
Final Gravity: 1.016
ABV: 4.46%

Tasting Notes

Appearance: Great color, it had a copper hue that you could detect through all the haze. As Mike put it, the beer was holding haze very well. We speculate that the use of Maris Otter plus the sheer amount of whole hop additions at the end of the boil is probably the cause but interesting with the use of the highly flocculant yeast.

Aroma: The aromas were fruity and floral aroma. It had that fleshy berry thing with a little orange.

Flavor: The flavor followed through with some fruity sweetness. I was detecting some resin in the aftertaste but Mike countered that he would not consider it to be on par with what we consider a strong resin presence.

Mouthfeel: It had a medium mouthfeel. The malt backbone sat well in the finished beer.

Overall Impression: This Chinook SMaSH was less of a herbal, smoky, and piney hop experience and more of a muted Mosaic and Galaxy like hop experience. As this beer as aged in the keg, the fruity notes are expressing themselves more.

I am glad this beer turned out well. I wish I had more to share.

It’s smaller than small batch…it’s only available for a small amount of time.

Brew On!