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How Cryo hops & 'lupulin powder' removes the need for traditional hop pellets

using lupulin to make cryo hops


How lupulin 'Cyro Hops' are changing the beer brewing industry 


The concept of making beer hasn't changed much in several hundred years but the methods recently have. While hops have been used for many a year, one company in America might have found a way for a genuine step change in hop use with their innovation of collecting lupulin powder.

You might already know that lupulin is the part of the hops that brewers utilised to make beers hoppy as that's where the good alpha acids for brewing come from.

In case you didn't know, the alpha acids are converted into bitter iso-alpha acids during the brewing process, and essential oils and are what give beers their varying hoppy qualities.

YCH Hops, a grower-owned hop supplier based in Washington, America has created a new process where the lupulin is extracted from the hops and is collected in powder form and marketed as Cyro Hops.

You might well ask, what's the point of this?

Efficiency gains in making beer are the short answer.

Beer hops are often made into pellets form for distribution and preservation. The process of making the pellets actually breaks down the acids and oils meaning the effect on the beer requires more hops than one perhaps needs. Enter lupulin powder which has the superior percentage of 'herbs and spices' over hop pellets meaning that less quantity is required.
Ekuanot hops are quite popular

YCH boasts that their product "offers twice the resin content of traditional whole-leaf and hop pellet products" which basically means you only need to use half as much.

YCH Hops initially started to market their powdered 'Cyro Hops' with the brand name "LupuLN2" to commercial brewers in America.  The reviews are in and breweries switching as result.

How is lupulin powder made into cryo hops?


The powder extraction process is simple in concept. The collected hops are subjected to cold temperatures inside a nitrogen atmosphere. This limits any oxidation of the sensitive resins and oils in the hop. The hops are 'chilled and milled' and the lupulin is forced from the lupulin gland.

The little guy has not been forgotten though - a small home brewer, you can buy the powder from Amazon!

How to use Cryo Hops

It's dead simple - you can simply dry hop the Cyro hops as you would with your ordinary pellet hops. You don't even need to make a hop tea!
cascade cryo hops


What variety of cyro hops are there?


YCH Hops have produced Mosaic, Ekuanot, Citra, Simcoe and Cascade versions of LupuLN2. 

The benefits of using Cryo Hops


You can see the appeal for commercial brewers - less volume means better storage and transportation costs.

The other benefit of the powder is that their use in place of traditional hops means less 'green material' is left in the beer, improving clarity by reducing sedimentation and better beer brightness.

You can see why home brewers who don't have commercial means of clearing beer will love using the powder!

I haven't found any information how long the powder can be used before it loses its potency.
Given the apparent early success of lupulin powder with the American brewers that have used it, we expect that its popularity will slowly begin to spread across the Continent and then the rest of brewing communities the world over - provided it's sold at a cost-effective price relative to the economics of using traditional hop pellets it should do well - indeed the prices on Amazon seem pretty fair.

Best keg and carboy washer: Mark II

using a keg washer


The Mark II Keg and Carboy washer is ideal for the homebrewer with kegs


Any experienced beer brewer will tell you that cleaning your equipment is one of the most important parts of making beer. If your keg or carboy is dirty, you'll run the risk of contaminating your beer.

This is why keg washers are a handy way to ensure your gear is clean, free of gunk and ready to receive your golden ales.

Kegs washing machines reduces the time it takes to clean and sanitize your kegs, carboys, and buckets and the Mark II Keg Washer is ideal.

To use the Mark II, simply fill the reservoir with cleaner or sanitizer, place the vessel to be cleaned over the sprayer, and plug it in. This great automated device frees you to complete other tasks while it works. You can save on cleaning and sanitizing chemicals, by spraying the cleaning solution on the entire inner surface you use.

The reservoir also contains space to soak small items like airlocks and stoppers.

Here's some reviews by actual users who bought the Mark II washer on Amazon:

"Why didn’t I buy this sooner? The keg and carboy washer is amazing. It works flawlessly and it seems to be built well. After 2 broken backs, no more lifting of full 6.5 gallon carboys is darn appealing. It saves on water and cleaner too. Great investment!"

"A must-have if you use Corny kegs - it gets the valves, diptubes and poppits very clean without having to disassemble, though I still do disassemble after every couple of uses. Saves time with carboys too, though the tough gunk still needs the brush. Haven't used on buckets - no real point IMO."

What's the most popular selling beer on Amazon?

I was amused to discover that you can buy beer on Amazon.

I shouldn't be surprised, beer is beer no matter where it comes from.

But what is the most popular selling beer item on Amazon?

Is it a niche craft beer or an iconic American brew like Budweiser?

Neither.

It's Stella Artois.

Bud Light is number 5 so I'll give you some credit there but Stella Artois?



I had no idea it was such a popular beer in America! And given how ordering from Amazon is pretty much a way of life in the states, taking Amazon's list of popular selling beers as a proxy for popularity, we see that Stella Artois is a very popular beer in America.

Why is this?

Yes, when served at a cold temperature, it's an easy to drink beer that's pleasant enough.

But in the modern beer drinking climate, where every man and his homebrew kit is a critic, how is this beer Amazon's champion seller?

Legend has it, this beer was first brewed in 1336 as under German Beer Purity Laws and has been produced unchanged ever since.

A little bit of research tells us that Stella Artois has been making great in roads into the American beer market over the last decade. It's said that the beer gain popularity about 20 years ago due to its 5 percent alcohol content and fair price point.

 The beer earned the nickname 'wife beater' due to the connotations of drunken men who've spent all day at the soccer match drink the stuff and then taking whatever their issues were out on their partners.

Steinlager in New Zealand has the same reputation - the concept being traditional mass-produced beers are 4 percent and when drinks switch to 5 percent they cannot handle their piss and do stupid things. We call bullshit, getting drunk is getting drunk and the choices you make are because you are an asshole if you are violent when drunk.

Stella Artois managed to re-brand itself as something a 'bit special' and has an image, especially around the world as a high-end beer.

An example of this is that it was marketed as 'reassuringly expensive' in adds such as the famous 'Papa et fils' add campaign:



Classic.

But that's not necessarily the reason people drink the beer is that for those that enjoy a quality European style pilsner, Stella Artois fits the bill, especially with it inoffensive Saaz hops. 

A bit of brand loyalty in many markets will also play a part.
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