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You are here: Home --> Forum Home --> Brewing Forum --> Brewing Discussion --> The First Wort Hop Effect | xBmt Results!

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Charter Member
Fresno, CA
167 Posts

Adding hops to the kettle prior the wort reaching a boil, a method known as first wort hopping(FWH), has been purported by some to impart a smooth bitterness and long lasting aromatic qualities, though some disagree, saying the bitterness is either more harsh or that it makes no difference. For this xBmt, I compared FWH to a standard 60 minute bittering addition in 2 batches of the same wort, balancing for IBU contribution. Results are in!

Posted 34 days ago.

Bastrop, TX
485 Posts

This is one I really enjoyed. Seemed less of the mind screw than the lager one. I was much more certain of my choices, and curious how I did.

I have tried FWH two ways... one pulling my finishing hops up into the FWH addition, and second using it as my bittering charge with a high alpha hop. I really like the results of both, although the character of the so-called finishing hops seemed to be lost/muted as you would expect. Another great technique for the toolbox.

Posted 34 days ago.

Charter Member
Birmingham, AL
2480 Posts

The best part of this article? The caption, "participants participating".

Posted 34 days ago.

Saint Vincent, AR.
1 Posts

Marshall...interesting, as always!  It might be the easiest way to add bittering hops for sure.

Posted 34 days ago.

314 Posts


have you ever put the real pro "noses" of the big breweries to the test with one of your experiments?

I have the opportunity to regularly talk with a few from Grolsch (they do the technical judging of our Guilds brew comps). With a long distance sniff and a short distance sniff and a small taste of a beer they can qualify more than 25 substances and the best among them can also quantify. They can tell me a lot about the fermentation process etc., regardless of the beer style or yeast. They actually don't know anything about beer styles, they are only trained on these substances.

Regarding triangle tests, double blind tests, AB-x tests etc. I used them, in a completely different field than brewing and they where never satisfactory unless you tell the participants what to look for and gave them time to do extensive A-B's before the X comes in. In this experiment the only clue to give would be to pay attention to the hops.

There have been national Home brewing competitions here since 1984, in those days it was an requirement to also present the recipe and detailed process conditions. One of organisers once took all the results of some 20 years and compared the results with the amount of "errors" in the processes. They match up. You can afford one, two errors and still be a winner, the more you make the lower the beer ranks.

Posted 34 days ago.

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