The Elsasser hop is a French hop variety grown on very limited acreage in the Alsace region. Alsace is on the eastern border of France and borders both Germany and Switzerland and the upper Rhine River. Elsasser hops, and cousins, Precoce de Bourgogne and Tardif de Bourgogne are considered true Strisselspalt varieties.
Elsasser hops used to be a favorite of Anheuser Busch, but are not being used by them at this time. Anheuser Busch referred to the hop as “Alsace.”
Elsasser are prized for their noble European aroma, and are very similar to Hersbrucker, but with lower alpha and oil. This hop is very smooth and pleasant, but using it for bittering as well as flavor and aroma, may leave the beer “greener” than desired. This is due to the lower alpha acids and need to use more hops than would be used with a traditional noble hop.
The typical analysis of Elsasser hops follows. Alpha acids are quite low, but no specifics were found. Humulene averages 32% , which is considered high, and the humulene/caryophyllene ratio is also high at 3.5. Elsasser also contains a small amount of farnesene, but less than typical noble hops, and significantly less than Saaz.
Due to the limited acreage there is not much information about the growing of Elsasser, but it is moderately resistant to Downy Mildew, and are considered to have poor vigor. Elsasser hops mature early.
Elsasser hops have fair to good storability and retained 63% of the original alpha acids after six months at room temperature.
Henning, John (2010, October 19). Re: Elsasser (hops). [Personal email]
Peacock, Val (2010, November 7). Re: Alsace Hops. [Personal email].