Schell's Frost Hop Sampler Pack

Discussion in 'Midwest' started by MNAle, Jan 24, 2017.

  1. MNAle

    MNAle Champion (892) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Saw this on Schell's twitter account:

  2. HammsMeASAP

    HammsMeASAP Initiate (75) Jun 14, 2012 Minnesota

    Can't wait for this.
    Victory_Sabre1973 likes this.
  3. Victory_Sabre1973

    Victory_Sabre1973 Meyvn (1,288) Sep 15, 2015 Minnesota
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    Sounds amazing.
  4. SipIt

    SipIt Aspirant (236) Jul 18, 2013 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Can anyone explain to me what qualities fresh-flash frozen hole cone hops should impart? Kind of like a fresh hopped beer frozen, but still not dried, so you get more of the green resiny flavor like a fresh hop? Curious, as I've never heard of this.
  5. MNAle

    MNAle Champion (892) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    FIFY... I imagine "frozen hole" is a completely different thing! (Sorry, I just couldn't resist the lame joke...) :wink:

    Anyway, I've wondered the same thing. Given the apparently intentional naming "Frost Hop" v "Fresh Hop" I would guess they are going for a similar aroma and flavor profile... but I'm eager to find out!

    Summit's experiment a couple of years ago with fresh hop pellets did not seem to blow everyone away as compared to other fresh hop beers.
    #5 MNAle, Jan 25, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2017
    SipIt likes this.
  6. grantcty

    grantcty Initiate (90) Feb 17, 2008 Minnesota

    Based on my very limited understanding, the hops should have similar/same qualities of a wet/fresh hop. They were picked, frozen, and shipped to the US.

    Maybe @bergbrew can explain further or correct anything I may have mis-stated.
    SipIt likes this.
  7. Atom13

    Atom13 Initiate (176) Jun 29, 2010 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

  8. bergbrew

    bergbrew Initiate (50) Jan 12, 2004 Minnesota

    Yeah, that's pretty accurate.

    So long story, not so short. For the past couple of years we (along with many others) have done a fresh hop beer around harvest time. It's probably the most stressful beer we make, as you never know if the weather will cooperate for harvest, so the brewing schedule is kind of in flux. You think you're getting your hops on Tuesday, and then it rains Monday and they can't harvest until Thursday (or they move the date up to avoid the rain). It just creates a lot of headaches from a production standpoint.

    The other issue is this: we make lagers. Not all the time, but most of the time. The hops selected for the fresh hop harvest aren't necessarily what I would choose to make a Pils. Sure, we used Cascade this year (and Citra/Mosaic previous years), but Chinook Pils anyone? Or Simcoe? They aren't hops I particularly like, and I can't see using them in a Pils.

    Oh, one thing I forgot to mention: the hops are overnighted to us. Because with fresh hops, you need to use them quickly or they begin to mold/deteriorate.

    Fast forward to about a year ago, a German hop merchant visited talking about the different hops he had, and kind of in passing he mentioned they were flash-freezing fresh hops. I think my response was "Oh, that's nice...wait, back the truck up here. You're doing what?"

    He described the process which is basically this: the hops are harvested, shipped in refrigerated trucks to a freezing facility, and then brought down to -19C. They'd been doing this for a year or so, and had some favorable results in Germany and Japan.

    My first question, of course, was "why hasn't any one else ever thought of this?" Because quite honestly, it seems like a pretty simple solution, Here's the kicker: their processing center is by Lake Constance, which has a lot of fruit orchards. They flash freeze *a lot* of fruit, and that pays for the facility. To do this for simply hops, which are harvested 2 weeks out of the year would be idiotic (or whatever the German word for "you're being stupid" is).

    That's basically the nuts and bolts. The hops are flash-frozen, then shipped to us in a freezer container. We took shipment, and then moved them into a frozen warehouse until we were ready to use them. Luckily, it's winter in MN, so when I called them up it was cold outside-all the state is a deep freeze! We bagged the frozen hops and threw them in the whirlpool.

    The idea behind the series was old school vs. new school. Two classic German hops vs two new varieties. Hallertau Mittlefruh, Tettnang Tettnanger, Mandarina Bavaria, and Huell Melon. I didn't want to bore you with all being pilsners (actually, I did want to bore you, but cooler heads prevailed) so we made a Helles, Export, Kolsch, and Pils. All golden German beer styles whose malt bills wouldn't interfere too much with the hops.

    If you made it this far in the post, you deserve a beer.
  9. LittleGus

    LittleGus Initiate (152) Mar 13, 2008 Minnesota

    As it happens, I'm drinking a Schell's Baltic Porter! :slight_smile: Very excited for this!
    bergbrew likes this.
  10. herman77

    herman77 Savant (964) Jan 24, 2010 Minnesota

    Is the Baltic porter only available in the brewers stash mix pack?
  11. LittleGus

    LittleGus Initiate (152) Mar 13, 2008 Minnesota

    Yes. It's really nice! It's worth a purchase for sure.
    JMN44 likes this.
  12. MNAle

    MNAle Champion (892) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Sie werden dumme... maybe? :slight_smile:

    Thanks for the TL;DR, only the DR stands for DID read! I'm gonna grab those as soon as I can get my hands on them!
  13. HeadRetention

    HeadRetention Initiate (133) Jul 13, 2015 Minnesota

    This could be the next brewey/consumer craze. Good bye sours and Blood Orange beers
  14. plumcrazyfx

    plumcrazyfx Devotee (494) Aug 26, 2010 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    The Prost and Brewer's Stash packs are awesome. I like the idea of 2 great regular beers and 2 limited beers. They have all been solid. Really looking forward to this one. Add the Tropical Stout and CABA to the mix - hitting home runs.
    MN23, jakemn91, MNAle and 1 other person like this.
  15. KiddVideo

    KiddVideo Initiate (165) Jun 19, 2015 Minnesota

    Will the yeast strains of all the different beers be the same or different?

    EDIT: It should be noted this is the best lager brewery in the country.
    CLevar likes this.
  16. dbhammel

    dbhammel Initiate (159) Oct 24, 2016 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Helles, Export, and pils likely same yeast but kolsch would not.
  17. dragonaut

    dragonaut Disciple (302) May 29, 2005 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    correct, @bergbrew confirmed on Twitter that all but the kölsch use the same yeast
    dbhammel likes this.
  18. KiddVideo

    KiddVideo Initiate (165) Jun 19, 2015 Minnesota

    Thank You!
  19. distantmantra

    distantmantra Meyvn (1,019) May 23, 2011 Washington
    Beer Trader

    Breakside in Portland has done this with fresh hop IPAs in the past. It's a pretty cool technique. Freeze them with liquid nitrogen and then "shatter" them open.
    DineAlone likes this.
  20. SipIt

    SipIt Aspirant (236) Jul 18, 2013 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Is this out yet? If so, where have u guys seen it?
  21. dragonaut

    dragonaut Disciple (302) May 29, 2005 Iowa
    Beer Trader

    It's definitely packaged…hoping to hear what some MN drinkers think before it hits shelves in central Iowa middle of next week. Really looking forward to this!
  22. GrainBeltBeer

    GrainBeltBeer Initiate (115) Feb 15, 2017 Minnesota

    Just picked this up from my local store in North Dakota... very delicious. I particularly like the Helles. I would recommend to anybody considering buying. Keep up the good work, Schells!
    JMN44, SipIt and jakemn91 like this.
  23. CLevar

    CLevar Initiate (146) Aug 10, 2009 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    2/4 in, I can confirm that this is indeed amazing.

    Anyone that doesn't list Schells as the best brewery in the state must not enjoy beer.

    Simply outstanding stuff.
  24. MNAle

    MNAle Champion (892) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    I picked up a pack from my favorite local tonight on the way home from work.

    It didn't seem right with what was on the menu for supper, so maybe tomorrow or over the weekend...
    Chaz likes this.
  25. CLevar

    CLevar Initiate (146) Aug 10, 2009 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    And that's why I'm working through them before supper.
    LittleGus, SipIt, MNAle and 1 other person like this.
  26. Chaz

    Chaz Poo-Bah (1,929) Feb 3, 2002 Minnesota
    Premium Member Beer Trader

    I'm pairing my Black Label with a cottage pie tonight, but look forward to pairing the Export with something sturdier and more region-centric. :grinning:
    MNAle likes this.
  27. DineAlone

    DineAlone Initiate (127) Jul 4, 2014 Minnesota

    Had the Helles and the Dortmunder last night. I couldn't tell that they were wet hopped (the process they used is about as close as you can get).
    The Helles was pretty fantastic, although the hop aroma/flavor and hop bitterness seemed more like a German Pils to me.
    The Dortmunder opened up as it warmed a little and by the end I was enjoying it, although not as much as the Helles. The first few sniffs and sips seemed a bit mineral heavy. <--- Possibly talking out of my ass on this. I'm not sure what it was.

    I'll try to crack the Pils and Kolsch tonight.
    #27 DineAlone, Feb 17, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2017
  28. Minnesota_beer_guy

    Minnesota_beer_guy Aspirant (271) Feb 15, 2014 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    These are great! Loved the export the best, nice change of pace from the heavy beers I've been drinking lately.
  29. Benj68

    Benj68 Initiate (31) Apr 9, 2015 Minnesota

    Loved the Pils, far and away my favorite song far. Helles was 2nd followed by the Dort. Haven't had the Kolsch yet.
    SipIt likes this.
  30. MrUse

    MrUse Disciple (327) Jun 20, 2015 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    The kolsch is very good. Having the helles right now, also amazing. Schells knows how to make a lager that's for sure.
    HammsMeASAP and Benj68 like this.
  31. SipIt

    SipIt Aspirant (236) Jul 18, 2013 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Had all 4 last night and the pils was also my favorite. Really liked them all though. The pils had such a nice clean, bright bite.
    Benj68 likes this.
  32. MNAle

    MNAle Champion (892) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota

    Finally broke open the box this afternoon. Drinking the first one now.. the Export-style (Dortmunder). Very enjoyable, herbal, bready, slight bittering.
    For sure.

    Looking forward to the other 3, but I'll take it slow to properly enjoy each on its own merits.
    #32 MNAle, Feb 18, 2017
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2017
  33. Atom13

    Atom13 Initiate (176) Jun 29, 2010 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Pilsner is very nice, great balance of dry yeast and hops with lightly sweet grainy bread malt, solid bitterness.
  34. KarlKarl

    KarlKarl Initiate (73) Feb 10, 2012 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Pils is amazing. First and only this far. Lots of hops for a pils but well balanced. Super refreshing, one of the best pils I've had.
    Benj68 and DineAlone like this.
  35. HammsMeASAP

    HammsMeASAP Initiate (75) Jun 14, 2012 Minnesota

    Finally got 1 of these. Will crack it open soon hopefully.
  36. essessbe

    essessbe Initiate (126) Dec 24, 2014 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    Worked my way through the entire sampler pack over the course of the past week. Hard to pin down a favorite as it kept changing from day to day. All incredibly solid renditions.
  37. KiddVideo

    KiddVideo Initiate (165) Jun 19, 2015 Minnesota

    I am looking forward to this package.
  38. Dizmal

    Dizmal Initiate (132) Oct 28, 2009 Minnesota

    Any leads on this in the NW metro? Haven't seen it around yet.
  39. SipIt

    SipIt Aspirant (236) Jul 18, 2013 Minnesota
    Beer Trader

    I got it at Golden Valley Liquor Barrel a week ago or so, and saw it today at the stl park liquor boy (west end).
    Dizmal likes this.
  40. HammsMeASAP

    HammsMeASAP Initiate (75) Jun 14, 2012 Minnesota

    Princeton's only had 1 case left as of Wednesday when I was there.

    They only received 5 total from what I was told.