Why the gardens in Hooky are blooming
Brewers Spent Hops.
Last month we looked at Brewers Grains and their use when the Brewery had finished with them, this month we look at spent Hops.
Hops are the flowers the hop plant, they are used primarily as a flavouring and stability agent in beer to which they impart bitter, zesty, or citric flavours.
The choicest hops are used in Hook Norton Beers. Traditional varieties such as Fuggles, Goldings & Challenger dominate with First Gold & Styrian Goldings also being used in some seasonal ales. The chosen blend of hops is added and the copper is then boiled for 1 hour 15 minutes. This process allows the bitterness to be extracted from the hops.
After the boil, the contents of the Copper are cast to the Hop back where the hops are separated from the liquid and sent out of the Brewery into a stillage, as shown in the foreground below;
Unlike Brewers Grains which are used in animal feed, Spent Hops are used for Garden compost.
I would like to clarify a local myth. There is a notion that if Spent Hops are spread on a lawn then the grass will come up Half Cut! I can confirm here that this is not the case.