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Beer school: what are hops? | The Craft Beer Channel

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Ever wondered what hops are, or where they come from, or what they do in a beer? Well wonder no more! Jonny tells you all from a Saaz hop farm in the Czech Republic. This is the first in our new mini series Beer School - teaching you the ins and outs of beer. If there's something you want to know, drop us a comment! BIG PROPS to Pilsner Urquell for taking us out there and to Mike of GoodBeerHunting.com for the amazing shot of the hops falling. SUPPORT US! Pledge on Patreon and get some cool merch & videos: https://www.patreon.com/craftbeerchannel Buy our new book, the London Craft Beer Guide, today: https://www.amazon.co.uk/London-Craft... And buy our first book, Beer School here: USA (Amazon): http://tinyurl.com/zbjx4sn UK (Amazon): http://tinyurl.com/zksjmdf Europe (Beer Merchants): http://tinyurl.com/jy6fr2y Twitter – @beerchannel Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/thecraftbeerc... Instagram – @jonnygarrett @mrbradevans Remember to drink responsibly(ish) and not be that guy...
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Text Comments (114)
0xAC1DBA5E (1 month ago)
hops is soy
0xAC1DBA5E (1 month ago)
The Craft Beer Channel  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10372741
The Craft Beer Channel (1 month ago)
I .... i have no idea what that means.
J G (3 months ago)
Really glad hops and craft are in. When i was growing up through college and university every bar in the uk seemed to just have carsberg, carling, amstel, fosters, heineken, bud (and maybe guiness if you were lucky). Basically everything tasted roughly the same and fairly dull. It was very refreshing when ipa's and hops came onto the scene.
The Craft Beer Channel (3 months ago)
Absolutely. It is all about diversity and choice!
ForBrewer (4 months ago)
Excellent channel! 👍 I invented to help brewers desktop *Pneumatic Crown Capper* l 🍺 I will be happy if you look and say what you think. Thank you!
Bishbashboshboshbosh (5 months ago)
When you truly love your beer you'd never refer to traditional UK pale ales as 'boring bitters'.
The Craft Beer Channel (5 months ago)
Didnt mean it to come across like that - there are lots of amazing british bitters and both of us on the channel were raised on them! But like macro lager the majority of them are exceptionally dull and occasionally poorly made
Darren Gaudry (6 months ago)
I drink and brew my beer for its old school bitterness
Stephen Bray (6 months ago)
I just bought a six pack of a very bitter beer. I came hear because I thought there was something wrong with it. Now I now what I bought. Thank you.
The Craft Beer Channel (6 months ago)
Haha. Takes a little getting used to but likely supposed to be that way! What was the beer?
Oliver Marawueke (6 months ago)
Bannerman v White
sam111880 (9 months ago)
And yes i get you can add any additional coffee or spices to make or change the aroma/flavors but the bitterness seems to be mostly determined by how much hops of what aged/type of hops i.e its all about the hops = bitterness levels in beers. I am also curious about if there are different yeast and if so the affect on using different ones of the other seem to me yeast is usually just yeast in anything wine , beer ,alcohol making, most breads, ....
The Craft Beer Channel (9 months ago)
Yep hops add bitterness, and some other plants can too, such as coffee beans. Yeast is a huge variable in beer like other alcohols but that is a whole other video we need to make!
sam111880 (9 months ago)
Nice explanation so if you leave out the hops and just add different non-bitter spices is this how you make sweet tasting beers ? Because it seems as the hops defines either aroma/flavor and most importantly bitterness level of beer
The Craft Beer Channel (9 months ago)
Exactly. It wouldn't be sweet necessarily as the sugar would still mostly ferment out, but it would be sweeter and less balanced.
Sidney Smith (10 months ago)
hahaha and chinook is pronounced shin - ook lol great chanel and video though man, but hearing you say native american words is silly
Sidney Smith (10 months ago)
2:00 "Alfer acids" lmao where the fuck did the 'er' come from
The Oculus (10 months ago)
Landon Donavan?
The Craft Beer Channel (10 months ago)
+The Oculus yeah a little bit.
HEMP SOLUTIONS (11 months ago)
Ever wondered what hops are, or where they come from, or what they do in a beer? Well wonder no more! Jonny tells you all from a Saaz hop farm in the Czech Republic. This is the first in our new mini series Beer School - teaching you the ins and outs of beer. If there's something you want to know, drop us a comment! BIG PROPS to Pilsner Urquell for taking us out there and to Mike of GoodBeerHunting.com for the amazing shot of the hops falling.
WELCOME TO MY MIND (1 year ago)
Such a good video! For beers newbies like myself is just perfect! Can you do more Beershcool videos, please! Oh, yeah and cheers!
WELCOME TO MY MIND (1 year ago)
Awesome! Can't wait! I'm totaly binge watching your channel by the way and it is so good :)
+WelcomeToMyMind thanks! We're sorting out more right now!
This is perfect!
Nia Geeh (1 year ago)
L.A turle bought me here.
Lazarus Stamatakis (2 months ago)
Lets smoke some beer from each others ass dude
Crate Marshall (9 months ago)
R A Z I E L 6 6 6 (1 year ago)
is this how people smoke beer
Lazarus Stamatakis (2 months ago)
Yeah I've got the pipe, come over and let's smoke some beer from each others ass.
BioApfeltute99 (4 months ago)
I'm so fukn high, and drunk
Zahir Leddajjar (1 year ago)
Yea dude. From the ass
Keaton Owen (1 year ago)
very interesting!
BassMasta8395 (2 years ago)
doesn't direct contact to hops increase the chance of impotency?
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+BassMasta8395 that explains it.
Renato Kunz (2 years ago)
How many weight a cone of Saaz ?
Renato Kunz (2 years ago)
+The Craft Beer Channel Sorry, not dried !
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+Renato Kunz dried? Only a couple of grams.
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+Renato Kunz dried? Only a couple of grams.
Hrvat Hero (2 years ago)
Going to czech republic in spring time...im fairly close to czech republic so ill be visiting it more often. but i got a question would they let me buy saaz rhizomes at their field?
RandyNewmanFan (1 year ago)
most likely
canal bem legal parabéns
bimmer boyz (2 years ago)
great video!
As we get into making videos about beer while interviewing musicians, your knowledge and information will be really helpful. Thanks for all you guys are doing.
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+Hear & Now you're very welcome indeed!
ddrab14 (2 years ago)
Anymore Beer School videos coming for 2016? They're one of many great aspects of this channel!
ddrab14 (2 years ago)
+The Craft Beer Channel sounds perfect, covering all the bases, cheers!
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+ddrab14 hey! Yep lots! We're sorting out both malt and yeast at the moment, starting filming in March so out April. Also got one of glassware, drinking fresh and ageing beer at home in the pipeline!
Strat Beer (2 years ago)
Very Nice  Cheers
Bellavinos P S (2 years ago)
Very useful info for beer people !
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+Bellavinos P S cheers!
KoKi GAmI (2 years ago)
Drinking a New Zealand "Moa" pale ale as I watch this. I can't stop watching your videos. Hazzar!!
James McCormac (2 years ago)
+KoKi GAmI I just stumbled on to these today. I can't stop either :)
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+KoKi GAmI cheers! Glad we're as addictive asa big hop hit!
saucysoviet (3 years ago)
Maybe it's just me.. I cannot stand IPA's and "hop heavy"beers... Great info. though!
Sidney Smith (10 months ago)
It's not necessarily an aquired taste! I absolutely loved the first hop heavy IPA I ever had, it really got me into giving other kinds of beers another shot!
The Craft Beer Channel (2 years ago)
+BoscoVapes it's not just you. Lots of people can't - but it's an acquired taste because we have a low tolerance to bitterness that we have to train over time. It's worth having a go though!
Great Documentary! We're a Micro Brewery based in Manchester UK, check out some of our brewery videos and funny craft beer mocumentaries - Come down anytime Jonny"
Marcownz747 (3 years ago)
Sorry, but this is a very biased-towards-hops video.  It should be noted that many beer styles CALL for low alpha acid hops.  Many German lagers traditionally have IBUs of 5-20.  Going over 20 for many of them is considered off-style, and is seen as a flaw.  Americans and the British tend to have more bitter beers NOT because they're "more concerned with the craft and flavor of beer", but because their hops tend to be more bitter.  I cannot tell you how many American homebrewers I've met who absolutely cannot brew a Doppelbock (Or to be fair to those lacking lagering technology, a Kolsch).  I'm fine with getting flavor from hops, but it seems that the days, craft beer drinkers are going with the whole "Your beer is shit if we can't taste the hops" attitude... and the fact is, there are wonderful beer styles that call for little to no hop character and have existed for hundreds of years... which Americans are making EVEN HARDER TO FIND... because they're always doing a "Marzen, but with a hoppy twist".  I'm cool with hops, but I very much dislike how the craft beer industry (and how the homebrew crowd) have been treating them.  We need some styles of beer that emphasize malt and some that emphasize yeast.  If a brewer can't make at least one beer which emphasizes each of these, I do not consider them to be even a halfway competent brewer.
KoKi GAmI (2 years ago)
He actually stated that a lot of beers are made from low alpha acid hops. I wouldn't call it biased. I'd call it a video that covered all aspects of hops acidity levels. Cheers🍻
Nevets t. Smith (3 years ago)
+The Craft Beer Channel I don't know about you, but I definitely notice that distinct rice adjunct "flavour". Hops would go a long way toward masking that.
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
+Marcownz747 Glad it's proving useful. We love weiss beers and doppelbocks and such - those beers are rammed with flavours while at low IBUs. We were merely saying low IBU American lagers are brewed to slip down without you noticing. You always feel a doppelbock, especially after 2 or 3!
Marcownz747 (3 years ago)
+The Craft Beer Channel It was only really yhe line saying something to the effect of "Macros go all the way down to 9 or so IBUs because they're trying to reduce flavor so that it can be consumed quickly, so that nobody realises you're drinking", without any mention of belgian low ibu beers or german low ibu lagers (Such as a Doppelbock, which generally has that same super low IBU).  I'm glad to hear that you'll be doing a yeast and malt video.  And I don't want you to think that I disliked the video.  I still find it useful for teaching my fiancee about beer.
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Eh?! We're in a saaz field in the Czech Republic! It's the best low-alpha hop in the world! I couldn't agree more with your final statement though, and brewers are starting to revert back to yeast and malt based styles. In the UK it's not as extremely hoppy as the US as our hops are also very low alpha (the highest being cascade). Lagers, saisons and sours are getting very trendy over here now. I promise, when we do our yeast and malt episodes you'll see we appreciate all styles, all ingredients and all hops. Cheers for commenting.
Luisa Cantón (3 years ago)
This is so cool!! <3 
Bo J. (3 years ago)
HOOOOOPS.  the more the better, basically.  here's to west coast / imperial / double / triple / whatever IPAs!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Amen to that.
GabiKoomen (3 years ago)
YES!!! Love the channel! +1 Subcriber Are there gonne be more Beer School episodes in the future? 
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
there sure are! Another coming in a fortnight, then the malt episode comes in April
felix sadie (3 years ago)
just found this channel, awesome !!!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Welcome! Glad you like our vids.
Brewery Show (3 years ago)
Awesome episode!
Jip (3 years ago)
Keep it up! When will the new episode be launched?
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Hoping to do malt and water before the end of March. After that the next few topics are up to you guys! What do you want to see?
Diogo Barbosa (3 years ago)
Great channel and amazing video. It's making me love beer even more. Congrats!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
that's what we like to hear!
Brandon Spanis (3 years ago)
Great idea for a series. Stoked for more. My question about this one: Are hops a special sort of flower to contain the alpha acids? I understand that a lot of brewing is based on tradition and "what works" as a process developed and refined over thousands of years, but I find it exceedingly unlikely that there would be no other flowers that contain the alpha acids, or something similar. I'd be curious about a brewery using another type of bud as a preservative, aromatic, and bittering, if it was possible.
Ole P. (3 years ago)
+The Craft Beer Channel Hej gents - my memory does betray me a bit I must admit, however: There is the Brewdog / Flying Dog - International Arms Race. 0 IBU. Maybe Sarah (Warman) can somehow organize a bottle for you. Then there is Sahti, the traditional Finnish brew. When done in the old school way it is bittered with juniper berries and herbs. Problem is that it therefore does not keep fresh that long and needs to be stored cool. Getting a traditional one outside Finnland is therefore hard and you basecally need to see if you can find a rare instance where another brewery dares to make it in the traditional way. The entire Gruit beer style is also hop free, so if that comes across you, might wanne have a try. Closer to you is Fraoch Heather Ale by Williams Bros. As far as I can tell that is also hop free. Dogfish Head, as mentioned before, does the anchient ale series which use just enough hops to not be illegal. Those are however extremly hard to get in Europe. Though a Kvasir, Ta Henket, or Bierra Etrusca could be interesting. The Bierra Etrusca actually exists in two European versions. Baladin fermented on wood and Birra Del Borgo on terra cotta, so those might be easier to grab (though I have not found them). That is all I got for the moment I am afraid. Meanwhile I sit here in Malmö, Sweden and wait for you guys to come by here or to Copenhagen sometime...maybe CBC....;) Cheers!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
+Ole P. Hey Ole - got any examples? Obviously saisons are flavoured with all kinds of things but we'd love to hear about any used for bittering. Thanks for all the info!
Ole P. (3 years ago)
Time and again brewerys do beers entirely without hops, as that is found in some of the prehistoric beer styles from around the globe. Plus some of the new breweries just want to be different. When this is done all manner of herbs and woods and such are used to achieve both the bittering and the flavor. Brewdog did a collaboration with Flying Dog by the name of International Arms Race, which was brewed without hops. Nogne O I am pretty sure did one too. Dogfish Head did multiple ones as far as I recall, especially in their anchient ale series. And at least the african honey beer part of their B*tches Brew was also bittered without hops IIRC. I do not know if alpha acids are in effect here or if it is down to other stuff though, which is quite possible. In hops too there are other compounds that influence the way the bittering feels. You might now how sometimes the bitterness is harsh and sometimes smooth and such, which is not just down to the amount of IBUs. That is also what makes Polaris my favorite bittering hop for my brews, as it is very smooth and pleasing in the bitterness it produces, and that at around 20% (!!!) alpha. Also freaking complex and awesome in taste. Thing is that the ones I had were definetly interesting experiences as the bitternes felt different and the spice aromas were interesting as well, but you can also see why hops are so popular and widely used. Most of the non hop beers are in the "Glad I tried it, but I don´t need a second" category. If you want to try some look for beers in the herbal beer category, maybe you´ll find one. Cheers!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Holy crap that's a good question. We've never heard of beers being specifically bittered with any other plants but I'm sure it's been tried. As for whether other plants can have alpha acids I'm sure they can, but probably not in levels high enough to have a similar effect. We'll do some research and see what we can find! Cheers.
Jan Kenk (3 years ago)
Wish I saw this before starting my homebrew journey, but it still helps a lot. 
Frederico Estermann (3 years ago)
Great idea, keep them coming please!!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
thanks, we'll keep drinking!
ryosaebamoi (3 years ago)
Love this new beer saga 😃. Great job! Have a good continuation. Cheers.
Tempo4200 (3 years ago)
Really digging your vids guys. Looking forward to this series. Cheers from the states.
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
cheers to you too!
Douglas Ribeiro (3 years ago)
Fantastic, give us more!
Jesse Dodkins (3 years ago)
Do this more!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
On it.
Simon Cervin (3 years ago)
Awesome. Looking forward for the next one. Keep it up!
Jerry Lincoln (3 years ago)
+The Craft Beer Channel Thanks for the hop education looking forward to hearing about malt making cheers
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
we'll keep drinkin'
j4ken (3 years ago)
Awesome! This is exactly what i want to see! Really looking forward for this series!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
chocho12321 (3 years ago)
YES so hype for this series
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
We'll hopefully live up to it...
Chris Chapman (3 years ago)
Excellent treatment - keep it up, can't wait for next episode!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
You only have to wait til Tuesday!
InTheKitchenWithKate (3 years ago)
This looks like it's going to be a great series Jonny awesome work! Kate :)
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Cheers! Hopefully I can sneak abroad for most of them too...that's always nice.
Gabriele Pumo (3 years ago)
Great great stuff as usual on this channel!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Glad you're enjoying it!
Scott Morris (3 years ago)
Good idea this chaps. Helps the newbs like me know what we are drinking and why it is (hopefully) so delicious. Keep it up 👍
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
Love this feedback! It's exactly what we're trying to do. Keep drinking, we'll keep filming!
tomber220 (3 years ago)
Great video thanks for the very useful information
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)
You're very welcome.
kuken2000 (3 years ago)
Love it!
The Craft Beer Channel (3 years ago)

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