Sterling Hops


Moderate bittering values with a mix of Saaz and Mt. Hood properties. Herbs and spices dominate, flowers and citrus around the fringes.

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Hop Qualities

Sterling Hops Flavor

American floral hop released in 1998. A cross between Saaz and Mount Hood in character but easier to grow. (Reference)

Hop Growers of America Information

Sterling is an aroma variety that was bred from Saaz and a number of other varieties. It has herbal and spicy aroma notes with a hint of floral and citrus. Sterling is perceived to be similar to a combination of Saaz and Mt. Hood, and many brewers use it as a replacement for Saaz. It is typically used in Pilsners and Lagers, as well as Belgian-style Ales.
Commercial Examples:
Pilsners, Lagers, Belgian-style Ales
Acid Range (Alpha %)
6–9% 6–9%
Beta Range
22–28% of alpha acids
Total Oils
1.3–1.9 Mls. per 100 grams dried hops
44–48% of total oils
5–7% of total oils
19–23% of total oils
11–17% of total oils
Possible Substitutions

USDA Sterling Hops Information

SELECTION: seedling selection Nr. 9043-52
GENUS: Humulus
SPECIES: lupuls
CULTIVAR: Sterling
PEDIGREE: USDA 21522 x USDA 21361M
Saazer 38 x [Cas x (65009 - 64035M)]
PRIMARY SITE USDA/OSU hop farm, East Farm, Corvallis, OR.
ORIGIN: seedling selection from cross 9043 made by Dr. Al Haunold in 1990
DATE RECEIVED: spring 1991
METHOD RECEIVED: seedling selection
AVAILBILITY: no restricions, commercial cultivar
REFERENCES: various USDA/ARS annual reports starting in 1990
Various Annual Reports to the Hop Research Council starting in 1993
USDA/ARS: Notice of release of Santiam, a new aroma hop. Summer 1999
MATURITY: medium to medium early
LEAF COLOR: dark green
SEX: female
DISEASES: downy mildew: moderately resistant
VIGOR: powdery mildew: moderately resdistant
Verticillum wilt: no information; no symptoms observed in OR test plots
Viruses: free of all major hop viruses at the time of release
YIELD: very good, 1,800 to 2,000 lbs/acre in Oregon test plots
SIDE ARM LENGTH: 24 to 36 inches
ALPHA ACIDS: 6 to 9%
BETA ACIDS: 4 to 6%
OIL: 1.3 to 1.9 ml/100 g
Humulene 19 - 23; caryophyllene 5 - 7; farnesene 11-17; myrcene 46; no selenine ; H/C ratio = 3.3
MAJOR TRAITS: diploid, 2n = 20; aroma and oil compositoin very similar to Saazer (USDA 21077) and other Saazer clones. Pleasant continental aroma;
suitable for replacing Saazer hops in brewery blends. Much higher yield potential than Saazer hops.
OTHER INFORMATION: This hop has only been tested commercially in Oregon. The initial release by USDA is based on Oregon test results. Testing in Washington state is under way.

Additional information

Weight1 oz
Dimensions1 × 0.5 × 3 in


  • Dave at Freshops is a… super nice guy, and he runs a clean ship. I shop there.

  • Nancy Scott

    Everyone who saw my garden wanted to know what that gorgeous plant was! Next year they will be covering a 20′ x 20′ purgola. Thanks again!

  • David R. Waite

    I wanted to tell you how extremely pleased I am with the quality of these hops! I have never purchased whole hops that look and smell this wonderful.
    Thanks for quick turnaround on the order, and for making hops of this quality and value available to fellow homebrewers.

  • Joe Harris

    I called you on a Friday and ordered 8 rhizomes. The following Monday, I received the order in the mail. You must have processed my order immediately for it to arrive that quickly, thanks! Special thanks to you for tremendous service, great products at great prices.

  • Robert

    Just from the feel, and smell, of these hops, I can say that (Greg Noonan’s recommendation) was right on the money… thanks for a great product!

  • John Boston

    As a 13 year home brew veteran, and former president of the Fellowship of Oklahoma Ale Makers, I must say your hops were the freshest and highest quality I have ever seen or smelled. I have been a Northern Brewer fan since visiting the Anchor Brewery in 1987, but I have never come across any Northern Brewer hops that rivaled those Anchor uses... until this batch arrived. The 4 oz of Cascade that came as part of your Value Pack were also a delight to behold.

  • Rick Oftel

    Just wanted to thank you again for the extremely fresh and prompt shipment of my last order.
    Just last evening, I brewed up a German style lager using the N.Z. Hallertauer and Magnum whole hops.
    Looking forward to many future purchases and just wanted to thank you for your attention to detail and also for allowing me the chance to make such great beer!

  • Sherry Leveque

    I received your root stock in record time and excellent condition. I am impressed.

  • Mitch K.

    I have worked at two of the three largest nurseries in America, but I can’t recall anything that has a more vigorous growth rate than these hops.
    I just wanted to say thanks for the fast service and viable rhizomes. You are a great company!

  • Curtis Hale

    I am writing to thank you for an excellent transaction.