Aroma Profile: Herbal, Earthy, Floral, Spicy
Alpha Acids: 5-7.5%
Beta Acids: 2-2.7%
Total Oils: 0.8-1.2 mL/100g
DescriptionWhitbread Goldings variety, or WGV for short, has a wonderful and robust flavour, with a distinct hoppiness in comparison to other Golding varieties. It has some beautiful herbal, earthy, floral and spicy fruit tones too, making it very European in its aromatics.
WGV was first selected in 1911 by Edward Albert White. He saw potential in this open-pollinated Bate’s Brewer hop. It didn’t receive the name of Whitbread Goldings Variety until after the brewery of the same name took over the farm on which it was raised a few years later.
The Whitbread Brewing Company saw the potential in WGV and decided to try it in one of their beers and as they say, the rest is history! One of the reasons WGV is held in such regard by many brewers is for its sharp and pronounced bitterness when added into the boil early. However, when added into the mid-boil, WGV’s flavour tends to lend towards a lovely fruitiness. If you use this hop as an aroma addition, you can also expect some woody and herbal flavours to spring to the forefront.
WGV is an exciting hop with a fascinating history. It was hailed as ‘the saviour variety’ by growers in Kent in the ’50s. WGV’s resistance to a particular kind of wilt helped cement its place in the hearts and fields of growers all across Kent after Verticillium Wilt devastated Fuggles and Goldings crops in the Kent region at that time. WGV saved a lot of Kent farmers from losing a lot of money.
Although Goldings features in the name, WGV is more likely to have a Fuggles pedigree. As the hop was openly pollinated, it can be tricky to know for sure what its background is, but it has a very similar aroma and taste profile to Fuggles. It is, however, a little bit stronger, so it isn’t a direct swap if you run out.
WGV is an excellent hop, giving a mild and clean bitterness in traditional ales and is excellent for bitters, pale ales, wheat beers and more.