Impart bitterness when someingredients usedin brewing process
Hops, the Spice of Beer Of the four basic ingredients to beer, but only three are essential.
The plant part used in brewing beer is the hop flower, a delicate, pale green, papery cone laden with perishable resins. They impart bitterness when used early in the brewing process, and aroma when used at the end. As a bonus, hops are a preservative, and extend the life of beer. In the hands of American microbrewers, hops have moved from their position as the supporting actor in the beer ensemble to the leading man of the quartet, and a pretty dominant one at that. West Coast microbrewers led the way in delivering beers where the character of hops bitter, piney, grassy, floral, or grapefruitytook center stage. But for the IBU counters out there, there is a stunning array of hop varieties with new ones developed all the time that brewers employ singly or in combination.
This poor three element beer will be sickly-sweet and dull. Throughout preparing history, brewers have added something extrausually a plant part of some sortto give their beer balance and depth. They’ve added heather flowers, spruce tips, borage or bog myrtle. In the Middle Ages, a compound called gruit mixed herbs and spices in recipes that varied from place to place. But by the 15th century, one vigorous weed crowded out all other competitors as the fourth ingredient in beer hops. Hop plants are climbing vines of the species Humulus lupulus, related to hemp but not smokable.