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In the absence of facts, be creative... Building on the idea that "Dry" is an antonym for "Sweet", perhaps "Dry Hopping" is... The adding of hops after the yeast has consumed most of the sugars, when the wort/beer is comparatively no longer sweet. I'm not claiming any proof that this is the origin of the phrase, just a completely unfounded yet apparently ...


I can't really answer your question, but I've found some interesting information nonetheless. The phrase "dry hopped" didn't appear until the early 20th century, according to Google's NGram. The sense of the phrase, from looking at a few samples seems to be the same as in modern use. "Hopped down" was a synonym that has fallen out of favour.


As far as I know there's no traceable etymology of the word 'dry' in this context. No one I've known in the brewing world has had anything close to a solid answer for this question. I think it's just lost to history. In looking around, I found at least two instances of referring to the process as "cold hopping", so you're right there. It just refers to any ...


Interesting question. I did some searching and didn't find an answer. Since dry-hopping refers to adding hops after fermentation is complete, though, I can only assume that somehow "wet" is related to fermentation and, therefore, "dry" relates to post-fermentation.

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