Weird Galaxy Dry Hop Aroma

I’ve been playing around with Galaxy hops lately, and both of the IPAs I’ve made with it have had the same odd aroma. Sort of like cut flowers that are past their prime, with an odd savory (almost like parmesan cheese) note.

The first time I encountered this flavor I thought I’d oxidized the beer with a cracked siphon, but I’ve ruled that out by rigging up a contraption to push the beer into the keg with gas. I’ve been playing around with a dryhopping technique I read at The Mad Fermentationist, where you dryhop in two stages, the first coming in the final stages of primary fermentation.

Whatever is going on, I think it’s at least partially related to the Galaxy because my second attempt, which added Amarillo and Columbus, is much better. That flavor is still there, though. It’s either the dryhopping schedule, a property of the Galaxy hops themselves, or the Galaxy hops releasing some odd compound when treated this way.

Just to nail down some of the variables, I’ll say that the hops are all from the same batch, smell fine, and have been vacuum-packed since I bought them in early December. The all-Galaxy batch used WY1469 yeast and the subsequent one used Conan.

Anyone have experience with this?

It sounds like they weren’t handled properly somewhere along the supply chain. Where did you purchase them? I got some from NB around the same time frame, and I didn’t get anything except the juicy Galaxy goodness. Just got some from Farmhouse brewing as well, but haven’t had a chance to try them yet.

They were packaged by HopUnion…bought at my LHBS. I vacuum sealed the 1lb bag into 2oz packages.

I guess Porkchop is right about this. I’m going to re-up on Galaxy hops from NB and see if they smell any different. I’m also going to see if this odd aroma calms down with a little aging.

I went and dumped my remaining Galaxies, but not before I dry-hopped a bottle of Yuengling as a control. Hopefully that will nail down for good whether the hops were somehow damaged.

Aww man, that sucks! Galaxy is becoming my favorite hop. I’ve been tempted to dry hop my coffee with it in the mornings.

That sounds pretty typical of dry hopping with Galaxy in my experience. Galaxy does best with REALLY short dry hopping periods, like two to three days. I’ve had great luck with that.

Yeah, you know, I’ve got mixed feelings on it. On the one hand, damn if that’s not one of the most expressive hops out there! On the other hand, I think many brewers use it in a heavyhanded way. Schlafly, a brewery I otherwise adore, makes what is in my opinion a really cloying beer with their Tasmanian IPA. IMO Stone gets it REALLY right with Enjoy By.