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Pacific Gem Hops: Unleashing the Bold Essence of New Zealand


Pacific Gem hops, a bold and expressive hop variety from New Zealand, have made a significant impact on the craft beer scene with their distinctive characteristics. Developed in the Southern Hemisphere, these hops have gained popularity among brewers worldwide for their unique flavour and aroma profile. With their robust and intense qualities, Pacific Gem hops are a sought-after choice for those looking to create beers with a captivating and punchy character. In this blog post, we will dive into the fascinating world of Pacific Gem hops, exploring their origins, characteristics, brewing applications, and the unparalleled essence they bring to the craft beer landscape.

Origins and Development

Pacific Gem hops were bred and developed in New Zealand by the New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research. Released in 1987, these hops are a cross between the Smooth Cone hop and an American male hop variety. The goal was to create a hop that offered unique flavours and attributes to diversify the hop options available to brewers. Pacific Gem hops have since become a notable addition to the international hop market.

Characteristics of Pacific Gem Hops

Pacific Gem hops are revered for their robust and complex aroma and flavour profile. Let’s explore the defining characteristics of the Pacific Gem:

Aroma Profile

Pacific Gem hops boast a rich and intense aroma with pronounced fruity notes. Expect to find luscious berry, blackberry, and black currant scents, which contribute to the hop’s bold and captivating character. These vibrant aromas make Pacific Gem an excellent choice for adding depth to beers seeking a punch of fruitiness.

Alpha Acids and Bitterness

Pacific Gem hops have a high alpha acid content, making them particularly suitable for imparting bitterness during the brewing process. The high alpha acids also contribute to the hop’s potential use in brewing robust and hop-forward beer styles.

Subtle Spice

Amidst the fruity bouquet, Pacific Gem hops offer subtle hints of spice that add complexity to the overall flavour profile. The touch of spice complements the hop’s fruit-forward nature, creating a harmonious and well-balanced beer experience.

Brewing Applications

Pacific Gem hops offer a wide range of brewing applications, adding a punch of boldness to various beer styles. Here are some ways Pacific Gem hops can be used in brewing:

Bittering and Dual-Purpose Hops

With their high alpha acid content, Pacific Gem hops are ideal for bittering additions in the boil. Brewers seeking a robust bitterness can rely on Pacific Gem to provide a firm and lingering bitterness to their beers.

Flavour and Aroma Hops

While often utilized for bittering, Pacific Gem can also be employed as a flavour and aroma hop. The hop’s vibrant berry and fruity notes shine when added late in the boil or during whirlpooling, adding a unique and captivating dimension to the beer’s character.

Dark and Robust Beer Styles

Pacific Gem hops are well-suited for brewing dark and robust beer styles such as stouts, porters, and black IPAs. Their intense berry and fruity flavours complement the rich malt profile of these styles, creating a memorable and full-bodied beer.


Pacific Gem hops stand as a testament to New Zealand’s contribution to the hop world, offering a bold and captivating essence that sets them apart. With their intense fruity aromas, high alpha acid content, and subtle spice, Pacific Gem hops open up a realm of creative possibilities for brewers. Whether adding a punch of bitterness or infusing beers with vibrant fruitiness, Pacific Gem hops leave a lasting impression on the craft beer landscape. Embrace the bold and robust character of Pacific Gem hops in your brewing endeavours, and revel in the captivating and unforgettable experience they bring to your glass. Cheers to the unparalleled essence and allure of Pacific Gem hops!