A batch of House Ale. Are styrians more expensive than crack?

I brewed a batch of my house bitter (recipe here) today with the yeast from yesterday’s post. I say house bitter, as if i’ve brewed the same recipe more than once, but that’s not really the case. Sometimes i’ll use a different hop, add a little home toasted malt, different shade of crystal and so on. However, it will always be a low gravity, with a characterful English yeast (no US-05), plenty of English hop aroma and served through a beer engine. Of course, it doesnt take a genius to work out Styrian goldings aren’t technically an English hop – rather a Fuggle grown in Slovenia – but, ever since Taylor’s Landlord, the signature hop of Madonna’s favourite pint, they are surely as English as cricket and warm beer. Styrians have a beautiful lemon-zest aroma, without the sharpness of flavour of other citrusy hops like Cascade or Amarillo, for example.

They cost a fortune, in comparison to last years prices at least. The reason? A combination of a large exodus of hop farmers from the market due to years of over-supply combined with poor worldwide weather conditions, i’m led to believe. Slovenia was particularly badly affected, as this video shows. “When I see this I want to cry”, Hristian77 laments; I know how he feels.

As far as todays beer went, the top photo shows the Styrian pellets I used. I’ve never used them in pelletised form before, in fact i’ve only ever used pellet hops once or twice in my brewing career. They tended to clog up my hop strainer a little, but i’ve had worse things happen on a brew day. The above photo shows a sample of the wort, a nice, clear, copper colour. It is now happily tucked away in the fermentation fridge set to 20C. I’ll post some pictures of my real ale set up when this beer is ready.




  1. Wez · June 24, 2008

    Liking the blog! Keep the updates coming, some great reading. Thats a nice colour wort you have there. Sytrians Mmmmmm, looking forward to hearing how it turns out.

  2. Geoff · June 24, 2008

    Cheers Wez… I’ve been enjoying reading yours and the rest of the JHBF crowd’s blogs. Six quid it cost me for 100g of Styrians!

  3. Wez · June 25, 2008

    £6.00! The local brewery that I normally get mine from charge a flat rate of £2.50 for any leaf hop, no styrians at the moment though, picked up 500g Bobeks to try recently, thinking of trying them alongside Casdade.

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