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Perceived bitterness character of beer in relation to hop variety and the impact of hop aroma

Oladokun, Olayide; James, Sue; Cowley, Trevor; Dehrmann, Frieda; Smart, Katherine; Hort, Joanne; Cook, David


Olayide Oladokun

Sue James

Trevor Cowley

Frieda Dehrmann

Katherine Smart

Joanne Hort

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Sabmiller Chair Brewing Science


The impact of hop variety and hop aroma on perceived beer bitterness intensity and character was investigated using analytical and sensory methods. Beers made from malt extract were hopped with 3 distinctive hop varieties (Hersbrucker, East Kent Goldings, Zeus) to achieve equi-bitter levels. A trained sensory panel determined the bitterness character profile of each singly-hopped beer using a novel lexicon. Results showed different bitterness character profiles for each beer, with hop aroma also found to change the hop variety-derived bitterness character profiles of the beer. Rank-rating evaluations further showed the significant effect of hop aroma on selected key bitterness character attributes, by increasing perceived harsh and lingering bitterness, astringency, and bitterness intensity via cross-modal flavour interactions. This study advances understanding of the complexity of beer bitterness perception by demonstrating that hop variety selection and hop aroma both impact significantly on the perceived intensity and character of this key sensory attribute.


Oladokun, O., James, S., Cowley, T., Dehrmann, F., Smart, K., Hort, J., & Cook, D. (2017). Perceived bitterness character of beer in relation to hop variety and the impact of hop aroma. Food Chemistry, 230,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 7, 2017
Online Publication Date Mar 8, 2017
Publication Date Sep 1, 2017
Deposit Date Mar 23, 2017
Publicly Available Date Mar 23, 2017
Journal Food Chemistry
Print ISSN 0308-8146
Electronic ISSN 0308-8146
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 230
Keywords Beer; Polyphenols; Iso-?-acids; Bitterness quality; Phenolic acids; Perceived beer bitterness; Bitterness character; Taste-aroma interactions; Trigeminal sensation
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Oladokun et al 2017 Food Chem.pdf (1 Mb)

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