Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Hip Hop You Don't Stop

On Monday night I bottled my homebrew beer which is a clone of a 60 minute Dogfishhead IPA. Yesterdays, New York Times had an article on the growing trend of adding more and more hops to beer calling it extreme brewing. In fact Dogfishhead sells ingrendiant kits for their famous beer at a store called Xtreme brewing.

Hops are what make beer bitter. In the case of IPA, the 60 minutes referrers to adding hops for 60 minutes, Dogfishhead also makes 90 minute and 120 minute, with more hops. The 60 minute has twice as many hops as any beer I have ever brewed.

I love hops, maybe not 120 minutes worth of hops. But I have been hearing rumors of hop shortages and rising prices on the homebrew discussion board. The end of the article describes the trend well,

“….the brewing world is now facing an international hops shortage. No, it’s not because of the daunting amount of hops used in many extreme beers. It’s more a result of the normal cycle of supply and demand.

Overproduction of hops in the early 1990s resulted in excess supply and depressed prices, said Ralph Olson, a hops dealer based in Yakima, Wash. As a result, world hop acreage has fallen from about 234,000 in 1994 to 113,000 in 2006. It may take several years, Mr. Olson suggested, for hops production to be able to meet current demands.”

For a while I have wanted to grow my own hops, now I have even more reason to try it. Only I’m not sure they’ll grow in the apartment.

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