Types of Hops

Cascade Hops

Known as the hop that started the American craft beer revolution, Cascade was developed in Oregon in the 1950s. It delivers a unique floral, spicy, and grapefruit-like quality, which is why it’s extensively used in American Pale Ales. The flavor profile stands out but is balanced enough to blend well with other hop varieties. Beers like Sierra Nevada’s Pale Ale have made this hop famous worldwide.

Centennial Hops

Named after the American Centennial celebration, this hop variety is sometimes referred to as the “Super Cascade” because it offers twice the alpha acids, the compounds that contribute bitterness. Centennial imparts a robust floral and citrus aroma, with distinct lemon notes. While it’s known for its bittering qualities, it’s also a good aromatic hop, particularly in IPAs and Pale Ales. Its well-rounded characteristics make it a versatile hop in brewing.

Citra Hops

A relatively new hop, Citra was developed by the Hop Breeding Company in 2008. As its name suggests, it is known for imparting vibrant citrus flavors and aromas, like grapefruit, lime, and tropical fruits like mango. Citra is widely used in modern American IPAs, double IPAs, and hop-forward Pale Ales. Its intense flavor profile has made it one of the most popular hops among craft brewers and homebrewers alike.

Simcoe Hops

Launched in 2000, Simcoe is a versatile dual-purpose hop, suitable for both bittering and aroma uses in beer. Its signature flavor profile offers a unique blend of piney and fruity notes, with undertones of berry, apricot, and earthy elements. Although the complexity can vary, it’s typically bold and intense, making it a favorite for brewing IPAs, especially in single-hop brews that allow its character to shine through.

Amarillo Hops

Amarillo is a private hop variety that was discovered and introduced by Virgil Gamache Farms in Washington State. It’s known for its high myrcene content, an essential oil that contributes a distinctive orange citrus flavor, though you can also find hints of melon and peach. Amarillo is ideal for late additions to the boil or dry hopping to maximize its aroma in American-style Ales, IPAs, and Pale Ales. Despite its potent flavor, it’s balanced enough to use as a standalone hop.

Mosaic Hops

Mosaic, introduced in 2012, is named for the array of flavors it presents. It’s the daughter of Simcoe and a Nugget-derived male. The hop is often associated with blueberry, tangerine, floral, and earthy aromas. When used late in the boil, it gives a good flavor and aroma punch and is commonly found in IPAs, Pale Ales, and other hop-forward beers. Its complex flavor bouquet has quickly made it a favorite among craft brewers.

Galaxy Hops

Developed and grown in Australia, Galaxy is a unique hop known for its strong tropical fruit characteristics, often described as passionfruit, peach, and citrus. These flavors shine in IPAs and Pale Ales, making Galaxy a favorite among craft brewers. Its intense oil content means a little goes a long way, and it’s often used as a late addition or in dry hopping for aroma rather than bitterness.

Nelson Sauvin Hops

Named for its similar aroma characteristics to Sauvignon Blanc wine, this New Zealand hop offers a distinctive white wine “fruitiness,” described as crushed gooseberries. But its flavor complexity doesn’t stop there; it also presents hints of tropical fruit, with fresh crushed grapes and grapefruit elements. It’s a good dual-purpose hop used in a variety of beer styles, including Pale Ales, IPAs, and Saisons.

Hallertau Mittelfrüh Hops

A noble hop from Germany, Hallertau Mittelfrüh is noted for its mild aroma that offers light floral and spicy characteristics. This variety is considered the epitome of noble hops, providing delicate bitterness and rich, complex aromas. It’s used traditionally in German lagers, especially Munich Helles, and other classic styles like Pilsners and Bocks.

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Saaz Hops

A traditional noble hop from the Czech Republic, Saaz is known for its delicate, spicy floral aroma with hints of herbal and earthy notes. With a low alpha acid content, it’s mostly used as an aroma hop, especially in traditional Bohemian Pilsners and other lagers. The unique flavor profile of Saaz has set the standard for Czech beers over the centuries.

Fuggles Hops

Originating from England, Fuggles is a classic hop with a distinctly robust, woodsy, and fruity aroma that also brings light minty and floral notes. It’s often used in traditional British Ales, Porters, and Stouts. The moderate bitterness level of Fuggles makes it suitable for English-style beers where hop character needs to be present but not dominant. 

Chinook Hops

A product of the U.S. breeding program, Chinook offers spicy, piney, and a distinct grapefruit character. It’s a versatile hop, used both for bittering and as a flavoring/aroma hop in various styles, including American Pale Ales, IPAs, and Stouts.

Magnum Hops

Known for its clean bittering properties, this German hop is a favorite for brewers looking to add bitterness without any distinct hop flavor or aroma. Magnum can be used in almost any style of beer, from Pale Ales to Lagers.

Willamette Hops

Named after Oregon’s Willamette River, this U.S. hop offers a mix of floral, fruity, and earthy notes, making it ideal for a wide range of traditional ales, including English and American Ales, Porters, and Stouts.

Sorachi Ace Hops

Originally developed in Japan, Sorachi Ace has a unique lemony, dill-like character that stands out in any beer style. It’s often used in Saisons, IPAs, and Witbiers.

Warrior Hops

Warrior hops are prized for their smooth, clean bittering and mild aroma. They have subtle citrus and pine notes, and they are often used in IPAs and Pale Ales.

East Kent Goldings Hops

Known as EKG, this is the quintessential English hop. It’s revered for its smooth, refined bitterness and the delicate, slightly sweet floral and honey-like aroma it imparts. You’ll find it in classic British styles like Bitters, Porters, and English Pale Ales.

Northern Brewer Hops

Originating from England but grown in various regions, Northern Brewer has a unique minty, piney, and herbal character. It’s often used in English and American Ales, Porters, and even California Common (or Steam Beer).

Strisselspalt Hops

A traditional hop from France, Strisselspalt is often used in Pilsners and Lagers, and it’s known for its delicate, lightly floral, and slightly spicy aroma.

Tettnang Hops

A German hop variety, Tettnang is known for its slightly spicy character and balanced bitterness, which fits perfectly in traditional German Lagers, Belgian Ales, and Wheat Beers.

Columbus/CTZ Hops

Columbus, also part of the group called CTZ (Columbus, Tomahawk, Zeus), is an American hop known for its high alpha acid content and robust pungent aroma, providing an earthy and citrusy quality to beers. It’s used in American Ales and IPAs for both bittering and flavoring.

Azacca Hops

Named after the Haitian god of agriculture, Azacca is a relatively new American hop known for its intense tropical fruit notes, including mango, papaya, and some citrus. With its high alpha acids and aromatic oils, it’s an excellent choice for IPAs, Pale Ales, and other hop-forward styles where its unique flavor can take center stage.

Liberty Hops

This American hop is a triploid daughter of Hallertau Mittelfrüh, which is a noble hop. As such, it has similar mild and delicate aroma characteristics, with subtly spicy notes and hints of citrus and floral. It’s often used in Lager, Pilsner, Bock, and other traditional German styles, as well as in American and English ales.

Motueka Hops

Formerly known as Belgian Saaz or B Saaz, this New Zealand hop is a hybrid of Saaz and a New Zealand breeding selection. It imparts vibrant citrus flavors, with fresh lime zest and tropical fruit notes dominating its profile. These characteristics make it a standout in IPAs, Pale Ales, Saisons, and Belgian styles.

Huell Melon Hops

Developed in Germany, Huell Melon is known for its unique fruit flavors that are not typical for hops, with strong honeydew melon and strawberry notes. It’s a newer hop variety and tends to be used in lighter ales or wheat beers where its delicate flavors can shine.

Target Hops

One of the most widely grown hops in the UK, Target is a high alpha hop with an excellent, well-rounded bitterness and a floral, sage-like aroma with hints of citrus. This hop is used extensively for bittering, but also for its aroma qualities in various traditional English ales.