This book is an amazing compendium on the hop, written at a level of detail that will captivate historians, chemists and brewers alike. Stan Hieronymus’ exhaustive research traces the history and evolution of many traditional and recently developed cultivars embraced and supported by craft brewers, and reveals a great deal about the dynamics driving the industry. Stan offers personal insight into the multigenerational families that continually strive to meet the ever-changing needs of the brewer. This book is technically sound, very well researched and footnoted, and digs into the use and history of hops in a deep and relevant way.
For thirty years, I’ve smelled the hops, walked in the hop fields and talked to the hop growers that Stan has written about. After reading this book, I realize how much more there is to learn about every brewer’s favorite flower.
You can’t say one ingredient in beer is more important than another, however, hops are what consumers are looking for today. Stan does a great job of telling the complex story of hops in a way that consumers and novice brewers can understand, while including the information that brewers with years of experience need.