Czech Saaz has forever changed the world of brewing, and it is an esteemed variety that is grown around the world from Belgium to the U.S. and New Zealand. New Zealand has bred several descendants from Saaz including its popular Motueka and Riwaka (B & D Saaz, respectively). Its alpha acid content is low (average 4%), and its alpha to beta ratio is 1:1.5 which is thought to add a more delicate bitterness to the brew. Its high farnesene gives it a warm, herbal character. One of the things that makes Saaz such a popular variety of hops is that its high content of polyphenols abates the oxidation process and gives the beer a longer shelf life. Although not without its difficulties (lower yield, low mildew resistance, light cones) the demand for Saaz has not slowed its commercial demand and enjoys employment in many breweries worldwide.

Recipes | Grain, Hops, Yeast, Water | AllGrain.Beer v1.3
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Sterling was successfully bred to overcome Saaz’s susceptibility to mildew. It is a moderate growth, moderate yielding hops. Sterling’s oil content is rather unusual – very high farnesene, very low (almost unheard of low) carophyllene content, higher humulene and moderate myrcene. This creates a delicately spiced, citrusy aroma with both a floral and herbal punch to it. Sterling’s heritage is crazy, yet apparently brilliant since it was successful in counteracting the problems Saaz was having. Sterling is half Saaz with Cascade, Early Green, Brewer’s Gold and an unknown variety.