- United States
Amarillo has become increasingly popular among craft beer enthusiasts and homebrewers alike since their introduction in 2003. Developed by Virgil Gamache Farms in Washington State, these hops are a proprietary variety characterized by their high alpha acid content, typically ranging from 8-11%, which makes them an excellent choice for both bittering and aroma additions in the brewing process. Amarillo hops are a product of a chance discovery; they emerged as a spontaneous mutation in the hop fields in 1990 and were subsequently cultivated and patented for their unique and desirable characteristics.
The flavor profile of Amarillo hops boasts a distinct blend of citrus, floral, and tropical fruit notes, often compared to grapefruit, orange, and even a hint of pineapple. These characteristics make them highly sought after by homebrewers looking to create bold, fruit-forward beers that are both refreshing and complex. Amarillo hops are especially well-suited for American-style Pale Ales, India Pale Ales (IPAs), and Double IPAs, where their vibrant flavors and aromas can truly shine. Additionally, these hops can be used to add a fruity twist to other styles such as Blondes, Saisons, and Wheat Beers.
When brewing with Amarillo hops, homebrewers should consider their desired level of bitterness, aroma, and flavor contribution to the final product. A higher alpha acid content can lead to increased bitterness when added earlier in the boil, while late boil or whirlpool additions can emphasize the fruity and floral notes. Experimenting with Amarillo hops as a single-hop variety or in combination with other hop types can yield exciting results and help you create a truly unique and memorable beer.