Beer lovers, homebrew enthusiasts and well, pretty much everyone in existence has heard of hops.
Hops are a key component in modern day beer-making.
You’ve probably even heard of Sativa, a subspecies of cannabis.
Beer hops and cannabis Sativa have similar taste and smell properties that could potentially indicate common ancestry. Or could they?
These two are the most economically significant species that are derived from the same plant family otherwise known as Cannabaceae.
And if I’m being honest, perhaps the most fun.
The physical characteristics between the two are similar as well. Both green, with resinous flowers and a similar shape.
Like cannabis or hemp, hops also contain an increasingly popular compound known as terpenes.
Similar chemical attributes between cannabis and hops are evident in the way each smells.
There are actually a number of plants that contain similar aroma molecules known as terpenes and terpenoid compounds. Some of these include lemon, lavender, and conifer trees.
The more common terpenes found in cannabis and hops are alpha-humulene, beta-pinene, and myrcene. (Surprisingly, terpenes although quite aromatic, can provide therapeutic relief as well.)
But what if we combined hops and cannabis?
Naturally, many growers have tried cross-grafting hops and cannabis in an effort to develop cannabinoid-rich hops plants however the results have proven lackluster.
Similarly, brewers have attempted adding cannabis flower to the beer making process in hopes of creating the ultimate super beer but have failed, hard.
Is this something you would experiment with?
Or perhaps these two post-prohibition era species aren’t meant to play in the same sandbox together after all.