Australia and New Zealand Hops – Hop Groups

by Brad Smith on December 29, 2023 · 0 comments

This week I take a look at the hops from New Zealand and Australia which have become some of the most desirable IPA hops in the world over the last few years.

Hop Varieties from Australia and New Zealand

As the US craft beer industry has grown, many of the varieties from Australia and New Zealand have risen to the top of the list for Craft Brewers. These hops, largely derived from Pacific Northwest hop varieties, have taken on the local terroir and also been selectively bred to deliver fruity and tropical flavors.

New Zealand is rapidly expanding their hop acreage, and their popular varieties include Nelson Sauvin, Motueka, Riwaka, Wai-iti, Rakau, Waimea, Superdelic and Rakau. Australia grows Galaxy, Topaz, Enigma, Super Pride, Ella and Helga.

Many of these hops have distinctive personalities that feature apricot, passion fruit, grape, gooseberry, white wine, mango and other fruit flavors. Because they are grown on limited acreage and have many desirable characteristics for IPA styles, they tend to be sold at a premium price here in the US.

Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) Hop Use in Beer

Both because of their Pacific Northwest heritage and unique fruity flavor profiles, these hops tend to be used in many popular IPA and Craft Beer styles. Like their Pacific Northwest hop parents, they can be adapted to a variety of beer styles including many “Americanized” versions of popular European and British styles. However, in Craft Brewing the ANZ hops have found a home primarily in IPAs and the very popular New England or Hazy IPA styles.

Many of these hops are high in thiols as well as key aroma oils like geraniol and linalool. As a result, the ANZ hops are widely used as whirlpool and dry hops for IPAs. The high level of these hop oils also make them a good candidate for dry hopping with them late in the fermentation cycle which can aid in biotransformations that create fruity, tropical notes in the finished beer.

Some of the New Zealand varieties are now offered in a Cryo-hop (luplin powder) form which are also ideal for whirlpool and dry hop applications.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s article on Australia and New Zealand hops. Please subscribe for regular weekly delivery, and don’t hesitate to retweet, link, like or mention any of my articles on social media.

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