What are lotus hops?

Answered by Marvin Richey

Lotus are a unique and intriguing variety of aroma hops that have gained popularity in the industry. As an expert sommelier and brewer, I have had the pleasure of working with Lotus hops and experiencing their distinct flavors and aromas firsthand. In this detailed answer, I will delve into what makes Lotus hops special, their flavor profile, and how they can be used in brewing.

Lotus hops, also known as HBC 586, were developed by the Hop Breeding Company and released in 2018. They are a relatively new addition to the hop world but have quickly made a name for themselves due to their complex and enticing characteristics. Lotus is primarily used as an aroma hop, making it an excellent choice for late boil additions and dry hopping.

One of the standout features of Lotus hops is their captivating aroma. When you take a whiff of these hops, you are immediately greeted with a burst of orange, reminiscent of freshly squeezed citrus. This vibrant citrus note is often accompanied by subtle hints of vanilla, adding a touch of sweetness and creaminess to the overall aroma. The combination of orange and vanilla creates a unique and enticing fragrance that is often described as reminiscent of an orange creamsicle.

In addition to the citrus and vanilla notes, Lotus hops also bring a delightful berry character to the table. This berry aroma is reminiscent of ripe raspberries or blackberries, adding a layer of fruity complexity to the hops. It's this interplay of citrus, vanilla, and berry that sets Lotus hops apart from other varieties and makes them a favorite among brewers looking to create unique and flavorful beers.

Lotus hops also showcase tropical fruit flavors, further adding to their complexity. Notes of pineapple, mango, and even coconut can be detected in the hop's flavor profile. These tropical nuances can add a refreshing and exotic twist to a , making it an excellent choice for styles such as IPAs, pale ales, and fruity wheat beers.

When it comes to brewing with Lotus hops, they are typically used in late boil additions or for dry hopping. Adding them towards the end of the boil or during fermentation allows their delicate flavors and aromas to shine through without being overshadowed by bitterness. Dry hopping with Lotus hops can further enhance their aroma, giving your beer an enticing scent that will have beer enthusiasts coming back for more.

Personal experiences have shown me that Lotus hops can be incredibly versatile. They work well in a wide range of beer styles, from hop-forward IPAs to more -focused brews. The key is to find a balance that allows the distinct flavors of Lotus hops to complement and elevate the other ingredients in the beer.

Lotus hops are a captivating and complex variety of aroma hops that bring a delightful combination of orange, vanilla, berry, and tropical fruit flavors to the table. Their unique flavor profile and enticing aroma make them a favorite among brewers looking to create beers with a twist. Whether you're a seasoned brewer or a beer enthusiast, I highly recommend giving Lotus hops a try and exploring the endless possibilities they offer in the world of .