I am using Fuggles for bitter and for flavour/aroma. While I am content with flavour/aroma I find that bitterness is a bit harsh. Is it just my opinion, or Fuggle is not very suitable for bitterness?

The recipe I used was the following:

for 4,5l

400g amber dry extract
85g crystal 120L (steep for 45' in around 70C water)

8g Fuggles 5% 60'
3.2g Fuggles 5% 30'
3.2g Fuggles 5% 15'
3.2g Fuggles 5% 2'

3 Answers 3


Fuggles aren't typically used for bittering being as their alpha's are so low. I have never experienced a bitter harshness from use of fuggles. Of course it's all recipe dependent, what was your hop schedule?

  • Alpha acid percentage was around 5%. I will post the exact recipe.
    – Paolo
    Commented Mar 19, 2013 at 15:58

Thanks everybody for your help, after some research I think that what I experienced is mostly because of those reasons:

  • Fuggles has a not so low cohumulone content, compared with noble hops. Moreover the one I used was (not English) Fuggles, which has higher cohumulone content than English Fuggles
  • In my particular case the hops used were harvested in 2011 (more than a year ago)
  • Recipe was an amber ale, about 1.045 OG from extract, with moderate Crystal addition. The result didn't have plenty of body and final sweetness, that could have better balanced bitterness.

My 2c: I did a (high IBU) single-varietal Fuggles barley wine many years ago and didn't get any harshness - it was one of my favourite beers.

  • I suppose you aged it for some time. I drunk my amber ale after a couple of weeks... :) This might have some effect.
    – Paolo
    Commented Mar 19, 2013 at 15:59

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