Alpha Acid %
12 – 14%
Beta Acid %
3 – 4%
Chinook are another US hop variety developed by the US Department of Agricultures hop breeding program. Released in 1985 Chinook are a high alpha acid variety that contain around 12 – 14% alpha acids and 3 – 4 % beta acids.
Chinook are the product of a cross of a Golding variety hop called Petham Golding and a wild hop that originated in Idaho. Chinook although quite a young variety is well established for its use in Pale ales and IPAs in both the US and UK with quite a few commercial examples showcasing their qualities.
Chinook are a great bittering hop with a clean bittering quality and also because of the high alpha acid percentage very economical. As well as this they have a unique aroma that is very piney as well as having the grapefruit and citrus notes of US west coast hops although more subdued.
Although they are great for hoppy pale ales their versatility as a bittering hop also makes them good for darker beers like porters and stouts where a clean bitter finish is required.
As an aroma hop Chinook are fairly unique so it’s going to be hard to emulate them with another variety, that said however I have heard people commenting Sticklebract are similar but whether or not they are is another matter, that’s if you can get hold of them as well.
Bittering qualities of Galena and Nugget are good at replicating that of Chinook and they are of similar alpha acid levels.
There are quite a few beers that use Chinook as the hop and a few of these are hopped solely with Chinook so if you can find these beers then you are going to know what to expect from them in your own beers.
First up is Brewdogs Punk IPA which although is not single hop it does use Chinook and you can get it pretty much anywhere in the UK. You might get lost with everything going on in this beer though.
Two Roses Brewery does a single hop beer aptly named Chinook that showcases the hop in a pale ale, this is worth looking for.
Stones Arrogant Bastard which from most reports I’ve seen is hopped solely with Chinook, this is a beer which is powerfully hopped so you are getting maximum flavour from the hops.