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Balancing hop bitterness


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I have created a lager, which was just an experiment but I like the result and want to brew the beer again. The only issue I have is its aftertaste. Initially, the beer was a little in your face with the bitterness but as it matured, it all balanced out quite nicely. But the bitterness in the aftertaste is a bit harsh. It's not bad, I'd just like to mellow this one out a little for the next batch. On the surface, it all looks ok, 28.2IBU and a IBU/SG ratio of 0.634 but the aftertaste leaves a similar impression to an IPA with double the IBU number but without the hop flavours.

I have the sneaking suspicion that the PoR is the culprit as they're known for a harsh bitterness at times. I was thinking of upping the amount of Crystal malt to introduce a little bit of extra sweetness to balance things out a bit. 

Any ideas?

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Just now, Aussiekraut said:

So you reckon leaving the late addition out might help?

I definitely will never use it again as a flavouring hop ( late addition ) thats just me, Ive never had any luck. To me there is much better hops around for flavouring a lager. If you're aiming for that aussie pub beer, 60 minute bittering is all you need I think.

Aside from that I made a really nice ale once using POR with just that 60 minute addition. It went down well with some of my family that are fussy beer drinkers. 

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On 4/22/2023 at 5:33 AM, Aussiekraut said:

25g @60
10g @5


@AussiekrautAK, I have finally gotten around to going back through all my AG lager brews that use PoR hops, 13 of them and mostly 44 L batches.

I think your problem is your BU:GU ratio is a bit off the mark at 0.634 because when I average all mine out, it comes in at a BU:GU of 0.456.
I would not alter your grain bill by upping the Crystal light malt, leave all that as is and get your hop schedule correct first.
When I do an Aussie pub lager I aim for a BU:GU of 0.480 to 0.500.  My PoR AA% packs over these 13 brews varied between 10.4 % and 11.0 %.

Also, I don't think it's the late addition that are causing the problem, it's too much PoR in the 60 min boil so move some of that to the late side of the recipe.
I have added up to 18 g @ 10 mins but personally I think 15 g at either 10 mins or 5 mins is the sweet spot for an Aussie pub lager the rest is used for the bittering.
I have settled on a rule of thumb to not add any more that 30 g POR total in the whole recipe for a 23 L batch and the bulk of that is late.

Play around with your software by putting various amounts of PoR in for the 60 min and then the bulk of PoR late at say 10 or 5 mins to get your required IBU's and aim to hit the ratio numbers similar to above.   But don't exceed the max of 30 g all up.  IMO, the 10 g should have gone in at 60 mins and the 25 g should have gone in late (just for example) but play with your additions to get the ratio right but remember not to exceed the max of 30 g all up.

Hope that helps you out.

Edited by iBooz2
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