What's all this fuss about hops?
Most beer kits are flavoured using a hop extract or oil. This is okay for your first few batches but to appreciate true hop flavour you will have to use real hops in your brew.
There are two widely available forms of hops. Hop flowers or cones are the dried flower of the hop vine. These cones contain resins which impart the refreshing bitterness that we love in our beer. They also contain hop oils which help to give beer that heavenly hop flavour and aroma. Hop flowers have to be boiled with the wort for a period of time and then strained and removed from the boiler. Pelletized hops are pulverized hop cones which can be used without straining. There are also many different varieties of hops which impart unique and distinctive flavours and aromas to your beer.