Cascade hops are well known by brewers from all over the United States and that’s because their flavor is considered to be quintessentially American. Released in 1971 by the USDA, the Cascade hop began it’s humble beginnings on the west coast, and boomed in popularity soon after.
These budding beauties are lusciously bright great, ripe with bright yellow dust beneath each delicate petal, a good sign that they are bursting with flavor. The Cascade hop is in full bloom this time of year, if not beginning to dry up and fall from its branches. Now is the time when Pale Ale released from the states, especially the West Coast, are fresh and full of the irresistible aroma of these specialty hops.
The Flavor Profile and Aroma of the Cascade Hop
Often compared to grapefruit, the cascade hop has a citrusy scent not easily forgotten. The chemical compounds in this hop are so pungent that they are often used by perfume manufacturers. A complex scent, the Cascade hop also has hints of spice, even a touch of heat, but nothing so intense that it would scare a simple palette. Used as a bittering hop, but subtle enough to taste the smoothness of its flavor. Finishes with a floral taste. Basically, it’s delicious!
Does the Cascade Hop Have Superpowers?
The Cascade hop isn’t known for its flavor profile and powerful scent alone. It’s also a hardy crop with a natural resistance to fungus and disease. This alone makes the Cascade hop a favorite among brewers who won’t have to worry their shipment of hops will arrive to sickly to throw into the wort. There is a done side to this strain, however. They’re inability to store for long periods of time sometimes deters brewers who can’t brew fresh hops right off the bat.
Find Cascade Hops in These Mendo Brews
We’ve got plenty of brews with cascades in them here at Mendocino Brewing Company. Look for the below beverages to see just what I mean. On this list, you won’t notice a new brew being released on September 13th, 2016, that is bursting with this Cascadian flavor.
Eye of the Hawk is an excellent, rich bodied ale that is brewed to perfection. “Eye” is coppery reddish-amber in color and its unique taste is the result of a judicious mix of caramel and pale malted barley, balanced with Cluster, Cascade and Saaz hops. This gives the Eye its luxurious flavor, substantial mouth-feel and that slightly dry finish. Eye of the Hawk has garnered a cult following that is enviable.
Blue Heron Pale Ale is a delightful, medium bodied smooth ale, with a distinctive crisp mouth-feel and a fresh hoppy finish. It is brewed using premium two-row Pale malted barley, generous amounts of both Cluster bittering hops and Cascade finishing hops and our own special proprietary yeast strain.
White Hawk Select IPA is a traditional India Pale Ale. We’ve blended American West Coast Cascade Hops with a very generous dose of English Fuggle Hops. This combination makes for a very aromatic character, as well as a truly authentic English flavor which you must taste to believe. “Hopheads” will love this brew!
Imperial IPA – This full bodied Imperial IPA is brewed with massive amounts of premium varieties of hops such as Amarillo, Cascade, Simcoe and Crystal and paired with a rich blend of luscious Munich, caramel and 2-row pale malts. The result is a perfect balance of luxuriant malt and heady, exhilarating hop flavor. After primary fermentation is finished, we dry hop our Imperial IPA with copious quantities of the above mentioned hops. It is then cold conditioned for a few weeks. The result is an outstanding and unforgettable hop aroma. Starting with an original gravity of 20 Plato and finishing at 8.0% alcohol by volume, this Imperial India Pale is a hop tour de force!
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