Equipment Glossary Acknowledgements

Site Map
Section 1
Brewing Your First Beer With Malt Extract
1 A Crash Course in Brewing
2 Brewing Preparations
3 Malt Extract and Beer Kits
4 Water for Extract Brewing
5 Hops
6 Yeast
7 Boiling and Cooling
8 Fermentation
9 Fermenting Your First Beer
10 What is Different for Brewing Lager Beer?
11 Priming and Bottling
Section 2
Brewing Your First Extract and Specialty Grain Beer
Section 3
Brewing Your First All-Grain Beer
Section 4
Formulating Recipes and Solutions


How to Brew DVDs


[an error occurred while processing this directive]


Chapter 5 - Hops

What are they?

Hops are the cone-like flowers of a climbing vine that is native to the temperate regions of North America, Europe and Asia. The species has separate male and female plants and only the female vines produce the cones. The vines will climb 20 ft or more up any available support and are commonly trained onto strings or wires when grown commercially. The leaves resemble grape leaves and the cones vaguely resemble pine cones in shape but are light green, thin and papery. At the base of the petals are the yellow lupulin glands which contain the essential oils and resins that are so prized by brewers


Hops have been cultivated for use in brewing for over 1000 years. The earliest known cultivation was in Central Europe, and by the early 1500s, cultivation had spread to Western Europe and Great Britain. At the turn of the century, about one dozen varieties of hop were being used for brewing; today, there are over one hundred. The focus of breeding programs has been to maintain desirable characteristics, while improving yield and disease resistance.

Previous Page Next Page
What Are They?
How Are They Used?
Hop Forms
Hop Types
Hop Measurement
Hop Bittering Calculations
Real Beer Page

Buy the print edition
Appendix A - Using Hydrometers
Appendix B - Brewing Metallurgy
Appendix C - Chillers
Appendix D - Building a Mash/Lauter Tun
Appendix E - Metric Conversions
Appendix F - Recommended Reading

Search How To Brew:

All material copyright 1999, John Palmer