If you’re on the lookout for exciting new hops varieties, you’re probably very familiar with the Hop Breeding Company (HBC), a joint venture between John I. Haas and Yakima Chief Ranches. HBC is a hop breeding company that has created some of the most popular new hops on the market today, including Mosaic®, Citra®, Eukanot®, and Loral®, along with newly-branded varieties Sabro™ (HBC 438) and Pahto™ (HBC 682).
Every year the HBC breeders make over 10,000 cross-pollinations to create new hop varieties. Over the next several years, the resulting plants are tested for agronomic qualities such as resistance to mites and mildew, and after 5-6 years less than 1% of those hop crosses will have survived and graduated into the HBC “advanced selection” process, where they are then evaluated on their aroma/flavor as well as agronomic characteristics and can be considered for trial brewing or commercial production.
Haas is constantly working closely with the HBC and learning about these “experimental” or “elite” varieties that have gone through the long breeding process, but are not yet fully commercialized. Here’s a rundown of some of the more interesting experimental varieties that we are currently exploring:
HBC 353 is a dual-purpose hop for bittering and aroma additions. It delivers a clean, low- to medium-hop flavor that is well suited for hot side additions in lager-like beers. It’s similar to Willamette hops, with notes of herbal, floral, woody, green tea, and grassy, and it works nicely in American Lager, Helles, Pilsner, Kolsch, Cream Ale, and Golden Ale styles.
HBC 472 is an aroma hop for hot side and cold side (dry hopping) additions. HBC 472 offers a distinct, medium intensity hop aroma that complements darker, malt-forward beer flavors and styles. Its woody, oak-barrel, whiskey, vanilla, cream, coconut, orange, and dill notes are suited for Cream Ale, Amber Ale, Brown Ale, Porter, Stout, Pale Ale, India Pale Lager, India Pale Ale, Session IPA, New England IPA, and Imperial IPA styles.
HBC 586 is an aroma hop for whirlpool and dry hopping additions. It features intense notes of tropical fruit, mango, guava, citrus, herbal, and sulfur that are well suited for IPAs and hop-forward beers, including Wheat Ale, Golden Ale, American Lager, Pale Ales, India Pale Lager, India Pale Ale, Session IPA, New England IPA, and Imperial IPA styles.
HBC 692 is an aroma hop for whirlpool and dry hopping additions as well, and it delivers a high intensity of hop aroma well suited for IPAs and hop-forward beers. HBC 692 exhibits grapefruit, floral, stone fruit, potpourri, woody, cream, pine, and resinous notes that are great for lots of beer styles: Wheat Ale, Golden Ale, American Lager, Pale Ales, India Pale Lager, India Pale Ale, Session IPA, New England IPA, and Imperial IPA.
To learn more about HBC experimental varieties, or to place an order, contact Roy Johnson or reach out to your local John I. Haas sales rep today.