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Admiral Hops

Taking a look at some other bittering hop varieties, I stumbled across Admiral hops.  High ranked hops tend to get my attention.  Here’s a profile of this hop variety.

Origin: The UK.  It was bred from Challenger and Northdown at Horticulture Research International (HRI) at Wye College in England to expand the number of bittering hops available in the UK.  It was released to the public in 1998.

Aroma: According to some texts, not much.  Some declared it gives a citrusy, orange flavor to any beer.

Alpha Acid: 13.5 – 16.2%

Typical Usage:  Bittering.

Beer Styles: English style IPA.  Probably good for bittering in other English style beers.  One note:  Some brewers were posting that they were not impressed with the bittering capabilities of Admiral hops.  They said they wished they had used more in their brews.   If you try them, let us know.


Looking Back At 2008


False Bottom


  1. Very interesting. Do you use whole hops, plugs, or pellets?

  2. Sam

    Just brewed with these (organic Belgian Admiral from http://www.breworganic.com) over the New Year’s weekend – two small batches of Belgian ales. Maybe not quite to style, but I was thinking of tastes I got from recent Orval and Westmalle (750mL much different than small bottle) and as a possible Chinook substitute per a friend’s recommendation. I have gotten low hop utilization with my stove top set up so I wasn’t afraid of the high alpha. Wort tasted very bitter (maybe I’ve improved my technique), but I didn’t get citrus or orange (yet). If the orange from the hops comes through that should be an interesting combo with the expected banana and clove from the yeast. It’s going to be many weeks before the brews are ready, unfortunately.

  3. In germany we have a Beer called Admiral, too.
    But I don’t think it’s britain. It’s a very cheap one.

  4. Hey Ben – I usually use pellets. If they are available, I will use plugs.

    Sam – let us know how it turns out.

    Hi Mappen – Prost!

  5. Sam

    Quick note on how my Belgian ales turned out (in case anybody was interested). I thought they turned out great and very complex. Looking back on my last post I think I captured the Orval/Westmalle taste I was going for. The first runnings made for a very strong Tripel. The second runnings are a bit drier and more like a more hop flavored Duvel. Both were high abv in the end and fermented down nicely. Kicking myself now for doing small batches. I can tell they are authentically Belgian tasting in that beer snob coworkers enjoyed the brews, while light beer lovers were tactfully appalled. Final tally – Belgian Admiral are a versatile high alpha hop the provides more character than expected. More flavor contribution than expected – was using mostly for geographic consistency and high alpha. I’ll have to retaste and see if any “orange” is present – didn’t think so on early tastings. I went on to use the Belgian Admiral in a lower grav wheat pale ale I’m sipping now. I used a lot of late Cascade additions and the interplay is interesting – provides a nice length and mellows the grapefruit which I normally don’t like, but wife does :).

  6. We’re interested and this report rocks.

    Can you give us some details in how much you used in the small batch Belgian ales?

    It seems like you got some good flavor out of them, if not the “orange-y” aroma/flavor that some sources claim they impart in a beer.

  7. Nice post 😉

  8. Brackney

    Awesome blog. Keep it up. Thanks

  9. Paul

    I just brewed a stout with Admiral. The noticeable orange aroma seems to trail off in the kettle, tuning moe to the slightly metallic aroma you get in Guinness. This may make sense, since Admiral is dervied, in part, from Northdown. In the kettle, at least, the orange seemed to fade pretty quickly.

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