WRITTEN BY DANIA NOVACK-KATZ
PHOTOGRAPHY BY MICHELLE T.M. LEE
WHAT IS IT?
Hops are the flowers of the hop plant Humulus lupulus. They are used as a flavoring and stability agent in making beer, to which they add a bitter, zesty, or citric flavor. They also find use in a variety of other beverages and herbal medicines. The hop plant is a vigorous, climbing perennial, usually trained to grow up vines in fields commercially known as “hop gardens.” Many different varieties of hops are grown around the world, with different types being used for particular styles of beer.
HOW DO YOU EAT IT?
Hops play an important role in balancing the sweetness of malt with their natural bitterness, and contribute a variety of desirable flavors and aromas. In addition to adding flavor to beer, hops are also brewed for their antibacterial effect over less desirable microorganisms.