Aroma/Flameout vs. Whirlpool

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by TheGecko, Feb 6, 2017.

  1. TheGecko

    TheGecko New Member

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    I'm wondering if it makes sense to have a hop utilization assumption for whirlpooling but not aroma (zero time boil hops), as the current system does.

    If I am whirlpooling around 170 and assume ~11% hop utilization for an IBU contribution, it seems we also assume some IBU contribution from the hops we threw in at flameout, prior to whirlpooling. What are others doing to address this? Do you classify flameout additions as whirlpool additions, and assume a higher utilization?
     
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  2. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    The aroma hop addition (at 0 minutes) does assume chilling immediately after the flame goes out. If I was adding 0 minute hops, and then whirlpool hops, then yes I would classify the 0 minute hops as whirlpool hops also, with a longer time than the actual whirlpool hops (since it would be at a higher temperature before the whirlpool hops addition starts). I hope that makes sense!
     
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  3. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Seems to me that the only difference between Flame-out and whirlpool hops is the momentary contact with 200+ degree wort. That degrades some of the volatile oils which the 170 degree temperature doesn't do. I've sort of decided that more hops at flameout is just about as good as a whirlpool given that I leave the hop bag in during chill. If I really want more aroma, a dry-hop is going to give me that.
    Seems like if you're going to do a whirlpool, skip the FO addition.
    Regarding IBUs, I've often wondered about the distinction, too. If there's alpha contribution in whirlpool, it has to be considered for FO hops, too. I'm not sure there's a noticeable bitterness from whirlpool hops. I guess the only way to really find out would be to do a split boil. ;)
     
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  4. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    And/Or get it tested at a laboratory for IBU %. Sounds like a brulosophey exbeerment to me.
     
  5. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    For what that would cost you could probably brew several batches of good beer. :)
     
  6. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    I do mostly whirlpool additions in pale ale and IPA's (very little in the boil, no flameout hops), usually @ 165-170F for 20-30 minutes. They most definitely add some bittering even though they are below 180F, where isomerization is supposed to stop. I use an IBU calculator and use 3-4% utilization as a general guide line. I think if you add some at flame out this number maybe higher.

    There are two ways at looking at bitterness; perceived and actual. The perception of bitterness is far more important to a beer drinker than the actual lab analysis. I'd go with the seat of your pants with this one and stick with trial and error.
     
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  7. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    I'm not sure I want the seat of my pants anywhere near my beer.:oops::rolleyes::eek: :D
     
  8. Starter Hops

    Starter Hops Member

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    I do separate flameout and whirlpool additions. I have learned to reduce my bittering charge by about 30IBU to what I want the target be. I shoot for around 60 IBU at 60 minutes, and then just load up at flame-out and after.
     
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  9. TheGecko

    TheGecko New Member

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    Yeah, this makes sense to me. Just call the 0 minute (flame out) addition a separate whirlpool addition and assume a higher utilization.
     
  10. TheGecko

    TheGecko New Member

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    #10 TheGecko, Feb 10, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2017
    I hear what you're saying, and probably splitting hairs here, but I don't track with all you're saying. That momentary contact with the 200+ wort will isomerize a higher amount than a whirlpool (assuming a temp of 150-170ish), and the extent of this will be highly dependent upon a system's cooling ability. Because of this I don't really think of whirlpool and flame out as substitutes. If someone uses an immersion chiller, for example, I think your point is pretty relevant as total full volume is chilling in the boil kettle. For someone who uses a plate or counterflow chiller, however, might not be as relevant. The wort is really only moving from 200+ F to pitching temp right before it hits the fermenter, and this is only happening to some of the wort. The wort remaining in the BK, yet to be chilled, is sitting at 200+ F and it can take a while before it changes.

    Also, you might be right about dry hopping giving similar aroma contribution whirlpool. Last weekend I did my first whirlpool, so I don't have any personal/anecdotal evidence (not sure if that's a good or a bad thing, haha), but there is a lot of literature supporting higher hop flavor from whirlpooling at or around isomerization temperatures than dry hopping.

    Anyhow, thanks for the feedback from folks. Interesting stuff!
     
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  11. TheGecko

    TheGecko New Member

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    Agreed with the perceived versus actual point, and the good ol trial and error method to suit personal preference. I did recently come across some research indicating that isomerization is taking place, to some extent, all the way down to ~145 F or so. That said, I might have to decrease my whirlpool temp next go round and see if perceived bitterness is affected. Although at 145, you're talking pretty prime conditions for bacterial growth... just another factor to toss into the cost benefit analysis!
     
  12. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    My point is that if the calculator is going to add IBUs as a result of whirlpool hopping, then there must be some contribution to IBUs from flame-out hops. The higher temp, even in the momentary contact provided by immersion chiller must be responsible for isomerization. Chiller plate, as you point out would leave the flame-out hops in contact with near boiling wort even longer. Yet the calculator will add no IBUs for aroma additions at flameout.
    Since I use an immersion chiller and leave the hop-bag in during the cooling it's easier think of my flameout hops as whirlpool hops (I guess since I don't actually move the wort around, it's technically a hop-stand). If I add more hops at 170 and let it sit, that's sort of in addition to other hops already in the bag. My best bet is to assume at least a little IBU contribution from both additions.
     
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  13. TheGecko

    TheGecko New Member

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    Gotcha, makes sense.

    How big is the hop bag you use and approximately how many oz (assuming pellets) are you using for hopstand, typically? Also, why aren't you moving the wort around during your hop stand/whirl pool/ whatever step... worried about infection, don't have a pump, or just whatever?

    I'd be interested in hearing if you've found hopstands to materially impart more/different hop flavor than traditional flame out additions followed by immediate chilling and/or dry hopping.
     
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  14. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    I only recently got a pump rigged up and haven't done a whirlpool addition with it. I could easily move the wort now and will when I do it again.
    I think I've seen a little better hop presence with a whirlpool, but honestly not a lot. I think since I'm leaving the bag in (1 gallon paint strainer from Home Depot) I'm achieving about the same thing. I did a Pale Ale recipe recently with just flame-out hops and no dry hop. The aroma was really great and probably just as good as when I've done that same recipe with a hopstand addition.
     
  15. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    I did a flame out addition tonight 20g Galaxy pretty much hop stand no agitation of the wort except when I stired with chiller. It takes a while for the temperature to drop away from boiling with my chiller so may get the best of both worlds both flame out and 80c whirlpool.
     
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  16. BoomerBrian

    BoomerBrian Active Member

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    When you add flameout hops do you immediately start chilling or let it sit for a bit before chilling?
     
  17. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    I let it sit for 15 minutes last brew then turned the tap on to chill down me wort but this takes awhile with my high ground water temps ATM So I could just start chilling straight away.
     
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  18. Nola_Brew

    Nola_Brew Active Member

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    Flameout/Whirlpool hops have always been difficult for me to pinpoint the IBU's. The calculators I've used are all over the place and TBH I don't find they are real accurate.

    I have done a couple brews using manual whirlpool by stirring every 5 minutes. The first one I tried was a Zombie Dust clone (WP started at 180) and I could not drink it as if was way to bitter for me and that was using 2-3% utilization. The second batch I did was better but I don't think there was much of a difference than doing FO additions. I do add FO additions when I kill the heat so it may in fact add some IBU's to the finished product. I may hold off adding the FO hops on my next batch and chill down to 180 and see how that turns out. I do leave my hop bag in my wort until I am ready to rack to carboy so sometimes (especially the summer) the FO hops may sit for 30-40 min while I get my wort chilled down to 80-85.
     
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  19. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Hops ain't cheep so getting the most out of these little beauties is important. More aroma more flavour more bitterness in boil a hoppy learning curve ahead :).
     
  20. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    hate to say it but while pool hops aren't what made a beer too bitter, as a matter of fact in most cases it makes a beer smoother from the thick aroma, you must of had too much in the boil
     

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