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The impact of hop bitter acid and polyphenol profiles on the perceived bitterness of beer

Oladokun, Olayide; Tarrega, Amparo; James, Sue; Smart, Katherine; Hort, Joanne; Cook, David


Olayide Oladokun

Amparo Tarrega

Sue James

Katherine Smart

Joanne Hort

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Sabmiller Chair Brewing Science


Thirty-four commercial lager beers were analysed for their hop bitter acid, phenolic acid and polyphenol contents. Based on analytical data, it was evident that the beers had been produced using a range of different raw materials and hopping practices. Principal Components Analysis was used to select a sub-set of 10 beers that contained diverse concentrations of the analysed bitter compounds. These beers were appraised sensorially to determine the impacts of varying hop acid and polyphenolic profiles on perceived bitterness character. Beers high in polyphenol and hop acid contents were perceived as having ‘harsh’ and ‘progressive’ bitterness, whilst beers that had evidently been conventionally hopped were ‘sharp’ and ‘instant' in their bitterness. Beers containing light-stable hop products (tetrahydro-iso-α-acids) were perceived as ‘diminishing’, ‘rounded’ and ‘acidic’ in bitterness. The hopping strategy adopted by brewers impacts on the nature, temporal profile and intensity of bitterness perception in beer.


Oladokun, O., Tarrega, A., James, S., Smart, K., Hort, J., & Cook, D. (2016). The impact of hop bitter acid and polyphenol profiles on the perceived bitterness of beer. Food Chemistry, 205,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 8, 2016
Online Publication Date Mar 8, 2016
Publication Date Aug 15, 2016
Deposit Date Apr 21, 2016
Publicly Available Date Apr 21, 2016
Journal Food Chemistry
Print ISSN 0308-8146
Electronic ISSN 0308-8146
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 205
Keywords Beer, phenolic acids, total polyphenol content, hop acids, humulinones, tetrahydro-iso-humulones, bitterness quality.
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Oladokun et al_Perceived bitterness of beer_Manuscript_Revised for eprints.pdf (799 Kb)

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