Ramble On

Friday, March 2, 2012

Hops Geeks

Sometimes on Sunday afternoons at Hawksbill Cabin, I'll take a walk up to visit our neighbors, Sally and Dan.  We'll have a great chat about the news of the day in the neighborhood, or about goings on up in Shenandoah National Park, and then, sometimes, Dan will break out his latest home brew.

These are always good times, but especially when the latest batch rolls out, there's no time when Charlie Papazian's (author of The New Complete Joy of Home Brewing) ring truer:  "Relax.  Don't worry.  Have a home brew."

Since Dan often talks about the vines he has going in the backyard there, our discussion will turn to hops from time to time.  This last time, he'd joined the craze about the new Calypso variety and the Flat Tale IPA that resulted for dryhopping with it.

I looked up the variety on-line and didn't find a whole lot of info.  What I found mostly was a whole lot of "Oh, I want to try that."  Then there was some geeky detail, as follows:

"Here are their vitals: 

Calypso Pellet Hop

Alpha Acid 12.0%
Dual Purpose Hop
Pleasant, fruity aroma, with hints of pear and apple
Typical Brewing Styles: Ales, Stouts and Barley Wines."

Dan gave me a couple of ounces, and then paired them up with a couple of ounces of Cascade - enough for me to make a batch - I bought a home brew kit recently and have been waiting for my work load to ease up enough to try it out.

In his first batch, Dan had used his (he bought a pound) combined with the Cascade crop from last summer - I posted a few times on that crops process under the "Beaver Run Brewery" label at the end of this post.  But this result was among his best yet.  It had retained all of the great qualities of Dan's beer with the addition of a lightly dry hop finish. 

We were just admiring the quality of Dan's work. 

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