Mike brewed an Amarillo Pale Ale to see if he could bring out the orange aroma and flavor notes that make this hops variety special. While doing so, we muse on the subject of hops freshness. Let’s dive in.

Amarillo Pale Ale Recipe

To get to the heart of the matter, Mike brewed this recipe to seek the orange essence of Amarillo hops. This recipe is for a 3.5-gallon batch of beer.


Calcium: 87 ppm
Magnesium: 5 ppm
Sodium: 20 ppm
Sulfate: 139 ppm
Chloride: 100 ppm
Sulfate to Chloride Ratio: 1.4


92% Pale Malt (US 2-row)
8% Munich Type 1


0.5 ounces (14 g) of Cascade hops. boiled for 60 minutes – approx. 16 IBUs.
1 ounce (28 g) of Amarillo hops at 10 minutes to go in the boil
1.5 ounces (42 g) of Amarillo hops at flameout
1.5 ounces (42 g) of Amarillo hops for dry hopping for three days.


Fermented with Mangrove Jack’s Hophead Ale yeast, which is a blend of Ester yeast strains and enzymes to promote aromatic esters and beta-glucosidase.


Mashed at 140°F (60° C) for 60 minutes
Ramped up to 154°F (67°C) for another 20 minutes
Followed by a normal Mash out at 168°F (76°C) for super fermentability

Fermented at 68°F (20°C) for 2 weeks.


Original Gravity (OG): 1.046
Final Gravity (FG): Approximately 1.010
Alcohol by Volume (ABV): Almost 5%

Results And Hops Tips

We Brew Dudes are generally positive about Mike’s Amarillo Pale Ale. It has a pleasant and well-constructed hop-forward profile, with a focus on orange flavor. The aroma is enticing with a strong citrus note. Mike didn’t think it has the essence of orange juice, but it is quite enjoyable.

Discussing hops freshness and quality, we discussed these tips:

  1. Buy Hops from Hop Suppliers Directly: We recommend purchasing hops directly from hop suppliers rather than from local homebrew supply stores. Purchasing from the source ensures that the hops are in their original packaging and are likely fresher.
  2. Purchase Larger Quantities: Instead of buying one or two-ounce packages, consider purchasing larger quantities like 8 ounces or 16 ounces. Even if you buy these larger packages from your local homebrew store, they are often original packages from the suppliers, helping maintain freshness.
  3. Use a Vacuum Sealer: If you have a vacuum sealer, you can take the hops you don’t immediately use, vacuum-seal them to remove excess air, and store them for future use. Following this process helps prevent the oxidation that can occur when hops are repeatedly exposed to air.
  4. Store Hops in the Freezer: Keep your hops in the freezer to extend their shelf life and preserve their freshness. Freezing hops can help slow down the degradation of hop oils and flavors.
  5. Consider Hop Varieties and Turnover: Some hop varieties have a higher turnover and are more readily available and fresher at your local store. If you’re looking for a specific hop variety, it’s a good idea to check its popularity and freshness level

Thanks for reading and best wishes on your hop flavor adventures.

Cheers and BREW ON!