Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

African Queen Hops

Pairs Well With

Cascade Hops, HBC 586, Blanc

Related Hops

Citra Hops, Mosaic, Barbe Rough

About this Hop

In the vast and diverse world of hops, there’s one variety that stands out for its unique flavor profile and remarkable versatility – the African Queen. This South African gem has been making waves in the brewing scene since its debut in 2022. In this comprehensive exploration, we’ll embark on a journey into the heart of African Queen hops, uncovering its origins, characteristics, brewing techniques, availability, and why it has become a favorite among brewers worldwide.

Introducing African Queen Hops: What Makes Them Special?

African Queen hops are a South African-bred high-alpha variety, renowned for their distinct aroma profile and robust flavor characteristics. With notes of stone fruit, blueberry, lemongrass, and black currant, they add a layer of complexity to any brew. But what truly sets African Queen apart is its ability to deliver a well-balanced flavor experience, whether used in hop-forward IPAs or subtle blended beers.

The Origins and Development of African Queen Hops

The story of African Queen hops traces back to South Africa, where it was meticulously developed by the South African Breweries (SAB). Bred from a cross of African and US hops, African Queen is a testament to the country’s rich brewing heritage and innovative spirit. Its pedigree as a diploid seedling selected for its exceptional characteristics has catapulted it to popularity among brewers worldwide, offering a unique and exciting addition to the global hop landscape.

Close-up of fresh green hops, used primarily in beer brewing, filling the frame.

Exploring the Aroma Profile of African Queen Hops

One of the most intriguing aspects of African Queen hops is its captivating aroma profile, which includes dank, spicy, and resinous notes. This daylight-neutral hop offers a sensory experience like no other, with hints of bubble gum, chili, and watermelon tantalizing the palate. Whether you’re crafting an American IPA or a Belgian-style ale, African Queen hops lend a distinctive aroma that excites the senses and enhances the overall drinking experience.

African Queen Hops Specifications Table from hop head farms detailing hop variety "african queen" with pairing, profile, origin, and substitute information on a white and green background.

Brewing with African Queen Hops: Tips, Techniques, and Best Practices

When it comes to brewing with African Queen hops, there are several key considerations to keep in mind to maximize their potential. Due to their high alpha acid content, they work exceptionally well in hop-forward beers like IPAs and saisons, imparting a delightful bitterness and flavor complexity. Additionally, their versatility extends beyond traditional styles, offering endless possibilities for experimentation and innovation. Whether used in whirlpool additions, dry hopping, or as a late addition, African Queen hops contribute a depth of flavor and character that elevates any brew to new heights.

Hop Addition Timing and Techniques

When incorporating African Queen hops into your brewing process, the timing and techniques of hop additions play a crucial role in determining the final flavor profile of your beer. Here are some key considerations:

Early Boil Additions:

Adding African Queen hops early in the boil allows their alpha acids to isomerize, contributing bitterness to the beer. This beer hop is ideal for achieving a well-balanced flavor in hop-forward styles like IPAs. However, be cautious not to boil them for too long, as this can lead to excessive bitterness and a harsh flavor profile.

Late Boil Additions:

Adding African Queen hops in the last 15 minutes of the boil preserves their delicate aroma and flavor compounds while minimizing bitterness. This technique is commonly used in styles where hop aroma is desired, such as pale ales and hoppy lagers. It helps to enhance the beer’s aroma without overpowering the malt character.

Whirlpool Additions:

Whirlpooling involves adding hops to the kettle after flameout and stirring the wort to create a whirlpool effect. This technique extracts essential oils and aroma compounds from the hops without contributing significant bitterness. African Queen hops can be added during whirlpooling to maximize their flavor and aroma contribution, making them ideal for hop-forward styles like NEIPAs (New England IPAs).

Dry Hopping:

Dry hopping with African Queen hops involves adding them directly to the fermenter after primary fermentation is complete. This technique allows the hops’ aromatic oils to infuse into the beer, creating vibrant aromas without adding any bitterness. African Queen hops lend themselves well to dry hopping, enhancing the beer’s aroma with notes of stone fruit, citrus, and floral undertones.

Maximizing Flavor Extraction

To extract the maximum flavor potential from African Queen hops, brewers can employ various techniques and best practices:

Proper Storage:

Ensure that African Queen hops are stored properly to preserve their freshness and flavor. Store them in a cool, dark place in airtight containers to prevent exposure to oxygen and light, which can degrade their aroma and flavor.

Use Fresh Hops:

Using fresh African Queen hops ensures that you get the full range of their flavor and aroma characteristics. Check the harvest date and choose hops that are as fresh as possible for optimal results.

Adjusting pH Levels:

Monitoring and adjusting the pH levels of your brewing water can enhance the extraction of flavors and aromas from African Queen hops. Aim for a pH level in the range of 5.2 to 5.6 to create an ideal environment for hop utilization during the brewing process.

Cold Crashing:

After dry hopping with African Queen hops, consider cold crashing the beer to facilitate the precipitation of hop particles and improve clarity. Cold crashing also helps to retain the fresh aroma of the hops, ensuring that it remains vibrant and aromatic until the beer is ready to be enjoyed.


Don’t be afraid to experiment with different hop combinations and techniques to discover the optimal flavor profile for your beer. African Queen hops pair well with a variety of other hop varieties, allowing for endless possibilities for creativity and innovation in brewing.

Availability and Sourcing of African Queen Hops

At Hop Head Farms, we understand the growing demand for African Queen hops within the brewing community. That’s why we’re proud to offer brewers worldwide easy access to this sought-after variety. As a trusted supplier committed to quality and consistency, we provide African Queen hops in a range of quantities, from convenient 8oz to larger 2oz packages, catering to breweries of all sizes.

Hop Head Farms sets itself apart by delivering personalized service and expert guidance to brewers seeking the finest hops. Through our online platform, brewers can effortlessly browse and buy hops. With Hop Head Farms as your trusted partner, incorporating this unique variety into your recipes and experiments is seamless and hassle-free.

The Future of African Queen Hops in Brewing: Trends and Innovations

Looking ahead, the future of African Queen hops in brewing appears bright and promising, with exciting trends and innovations on the horizon. As brewers continue to explore and experiment with this unique variety, we can expect to see an increase in its use across a wide range of beer styles and recipes. Whether it’s in traditional hop-forward beers like IPAs and pale ales or more experimental brews like barrel-aged and sour beers, African Queen hops offer endless opportunities for creativity and expression. With their complex flavor profile, versatility, and availability, African Queen hops are sure to remain a favorite among brewers and beer enthusiasts alike, driving further growth and innovation in the ever-evolving world of craft beer.

Conclusion: Embracing the Essence of African Queen Hops

In summary, African Queen hops represent a fascinating intersection of tradition, innovation, and flavor in the world of brewing. From their origins in South Africa to their widespread popularity and availability worldwide, African Queen hops continue to captivate brewers and beer lovers with their unique aroma profile, robust flavor characteristics, and versatile brewing applications. Whether you’re a seasoned brewer looking to push the boundaries of flavor or a curious enthusiast eager to explore new and exciting ingredients, African Queen hops offer a world of possibilities and inspiration. So, embrace the essence of African Queen hops and embark on a flavorful journey into the heart of South African brewing innovation.

Key Takeaways:

  • African Queen hops are a South African-bred high-alpha variety known for their distinct aroma profile and robust flavor characteristics.
  • Developed by the South African Breweries (SAB), African Queen hops have quickly gained popularity among brewers worldwide for their versatility and unique sensory experience.
  • When brewing with African Queen hops, it’s essential to consider their high alpha acid content and explore various techniques to maximize their flavor potential.
  • African Queen hops are becoming increasingly available to brewers through wholesale suppliers and online retailers, making them accessible to breweries of all sizes.
  • The future of African Queen hops in brewing looks promising, with exciting trends and innovations driving further growth and experimentation in the craft beer industry.

How to Purchase African Queen Hops

Interested in placing a spot order or getting wholesale pricing on our hops? View this hop and others from our online inventory! Simply click below to be taken to our shop.


What are African Queen hops?

African Queen hops are a South African-bred high-alpha variety known for their unique flavor profile and versatility in brewing. They are characterized by notes of stone fruit, blueberry, lemongrass, and black currant, making them a popular choice among brewers worldwide.

Where do African Queen hops come from?

African Queen hops were developed by the South African Breweries (SAB) and are bred from a cross of African and US hops. They are a testament to South Africa’s rich brewing heritage and innovative spirit.

What styles of beer are African Queen hops best suited for?

African Queen hops work exceptionally well in hop-forward beer styles such as IPAs and saisons. Their high alpha acid content contributes bitterness and flavor complexity, while their unique aroma profile enhances the overall drinking experience.

How can I use African Queen hops in my brewing process?

African Queen hops can be used in various stages of the brewing process, including early boil additions for bitterness, late boil additions for aroma, whirlpool additions for flavor extraction, and dry hopping for additional aroma without bitterness. Experimentation with different techniques will help you discover the best way to incorporate African Queen hops into your recipes.

Where can I buy African Queen hops?

African Queen hops are available from reputable suppliers like Hop Head Farms, we offer them in various quantities to suit brewers of all scales. Many online retailers also stock African Queen hops, making them easily accessible to brewers worldwide.

More Hops