HVG Germany: Hopfen



Characterising the Hop Varieties

The hop varieties grown in Europe had developed in the various production regions from their natural selection by the hop-grower and the brewers over hundreds of years.

Up until the mid-1950s when the selective hop breeding brought new varieties from crossings onto the market, each production region had its own hop variety which generally bore the name of the region. Thus in Germany there was:

in the Hallertau - the Hallertauer Mittelfrüh
in Hersbruck - the Hersbrucker Spät
in Spalt - the Spalter
in Tettnang - the Tettnanger

and in Europe

in France in the Alsace - the Strisselspalter
in Poland in Lublin - the Lubliner
in the Czech Republic in Saaz/Auscha - the Saazer 

The appearance of the hops was the main characteristic to distinguish the variety. Additionally there was of course the aroma evaluation made by the brewer.
The hops have expelled all the other spices in the beer by extending the beer's microbiological durability. For the brewer it was important to choose varieties of which they could put a substantial amount into the copper without negative effects on the taste. Thus those varieties which survived this natural selection are characterised as being particularly mild.

Here we shall therefore call these hops classic aroma hops. They were the basis for the following hops in Central Europe and are still being grown today.

A definite genetic relationship exists between them which is why e.g. the varieties rich in farnesene such as Tettnanger, Spalter, Saazer and Lubliner are called the varieties of the "Saazer range".

A close genetic relationship also exists between the Hersbrucker and the Strisselspalter.