Hop Variety

Centennial

Origin

US

Alpha Acid %

8 – 10%

Beta Acid %

4%

Background

Centennial are one of the hops to define the big craft brewery movement in the US. Centennial is a hop from the US Department of Agricultures hop breeding program and was released in the 1990’s. It’s parentage comprises of a few well known varieties including Brewer’s Gold, Fuggle and East Kent Goldings.

Although it’s relatively young in terms of hop varieties it has proved to be one of the defining hops in US craft brewing alongside Cascade and Columbus the “Three C’s”

Brewing Attributes

Centennial has dual purpose, being a higher alpha acid variety is well suited to bittering. The bittering quality of Centennial is crisp and clean. The term “Super Cascade” is often used when describing Centennial and they do a have citrus, grapefruit notes as Cascade do but it not as pronounced as Cascade, there is more of a floral quality along with a gooseberry note.

As they are good as a dual purpose hop they are ideal in single hop beers and dry hopping which makes some striking beers that showcase Centennial very well.

Possible Substitutions

As mentioned previously Centennial does have attributes similar to Cascade, however Centennial has less of a fruitiness with less prominent flavours, they are also far higher in alpha acids so other hops are more suited for bittering purposes.

Columbus are a good substitute for bittering and better still, in terms of aroma a mixture of Cascade and Columbus of around 70/30 ratio will approach Columbus.

Commercial Examples

Centennial is a very popular hop and one of the ever present “C” hops used in American craft beers. You can expect to find Centennial in a lot of beers especially hop forward IPA’s and pale ales.

Flying Dog Brewery make a Centennial Imperial IPA as part of a series of single hop beers and this showcases the hop well.

Sierra Nevada also use Centennial along with other hops in the Bigfoot Ale and their Celebration Ale