From the HBD Archive
From: resch@craycos.com (David Resch)
Subject: When to dry hop and why
Date: 1992-03-19 16:51:57 GMT

Jim Schlemmer says:

>Now I read that Dave waits until he racks to secondary and I remember that
>I've heard that before. Can someone tell me why?

I wait to dry hop until the secondary for several reasons, some of which may
not be "scientifically" valid:

1) Adding them to the secondary guarantees that the beer will have a reasonable
alcohol content and will minimize the risk of infection (however minimal to
begin with) since I do nothing to sanitize/sterilize the hop flowers.

2) If they are added too early in the fermentation, they tend to be carried up
onto the top of the krausen and many stick to the sides of the fermenter
so that the "goodies" aren't being absorbed into the beer.

3) I have no hard evidence, but it seems that since a lot of the aromatic
components that we are trying to extract via dry hopping are very volatile,
they would be "scrubbed" out by the CO2 generated during active
fermentation. These aromatics would thus be carried away with the CO2
escaping through the fermentation lock/blowoff tube.

4) I've found through experimentation, that for the amount of dry hops that I
add, the 1 1/2 to 2 weeks of secondary fermentation that I do seems to give
me the desired amount of hop flavor and aroma I am seeking.

Dave Resch

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