České Budějovice, 31st August 2018 – Yesterday afternoon, Budweiser Budvar brewed its seasonal beer specialty made from fresh hop cones. Fresh hops must be processed on the day of their harvest thus ranking amongst the rarest brewing ingredients, infrequently used in brewing practice. Fresh hops provide beer with more aromatic substances and a rather higher bitterness compared to dried hops.
The tradition of brewing fresh beer came to life in Budweiser Budvar seven years ago as a celebration of the brewers’ skilful work on one side and thanks to the growers on the other. At that time Budvar was the only Czech brewery to work with green hops. Due to a great interest of consumers in such beer, Budweiser Budvar was joined by other breweries in the subsequent years.
The seasonal specialty brewed in Budvar is solely hopped with fresh hops, which are added in three batches. “Our brewery is one of the few Czech breweries whose brewing house is equipped with a so-called “hop strainer”, which removes the extracted grains from the hopped wort at the end of the hop boiling. Breweries that brew beer from hop pellets or extracts do not have a hop strainer and can therefore add fresh hops only in symbolic quantities to each batch,”explains Budweiser Budvar’s brewmaster Adam Brož.
This year, Budvar’s brewing house brewed two batches of beer with a gravity of 16°. 400 kg of green hop cones were added to a traditional 400-hectolitre batch hopped by Saaz “poloraný červeňák”. “We have been using the Saaz “poloraný červeňák” hops from the “Splav” hop field for seven years and thanks to that we can monitor very well the differences caused by different weather patterns each year. In the second batch we also tried a fresh harvest of the “Agnus” strain from the “Pod Česačkou” hop field near Mradice this year. That will give us a chance to have a comparison of the two Saaz stains. I really look forward to the result,” concludes Adam Brož.
Numbering amongst the leading Czech hop sellers and traders, ARIX, joint-stock company supplied the hops for the special batches. Special beer from fresh hops will mature in the cellar for up to 180 days and then it will be drawn for all beer fans in selected restaurants in the Czech Republic as well as several other countries.