One of the choices that a homebrewer must make is whether they choose to use fresh hops or hop pellets. Both approaches are effective for brewing beer, but they have some key differences that you should understand before using one or the other.
With the continued increase in interest of homebrewing it is no wonder that more people are getting involved in growing their own hops. For a homebrewer, this is a relatively easy step towards sustainable homebrewing, and it gets you just one step closer to your beer. Cultivation of the humulus plant is relatively easy, and compared to growing and malting your own barley, it’s not even in the same ballpark! Even for extract brewers, this can be a fun way to put a personal touch on your own beers.
Beer itself has a history of roughly 9,000 years, but for the majority of this time, hops were not used! The very first mention of hops in relation to beer and brewing in recorded history was in 822 AD, in a set of rules for a monastery. These rules are the earliest evidence that hops was used in brewing, but there was no indication of what precise role hops played. Now, in many countries, a drink brewed without hops simply cannot be called beer!