# Mission: Impossible? Hydrocarbons in an aqueous liquid (e.g. humulene in beer)

Your mission, should you decide to accept it, is to describe how hydrocarbons can be stably mixed into a water-based liquid such as beer, as in this question. According to the usual textbook wisdom, hydrocarbons which are essentially nonpolar and have little or no hydrogen bonding with water, should be the classic hydrophobic material, surely repelled from water like, well, oil. How is a hydrocarbon such as humulene ($$\ce{C_{15}H_{24}}$$) stably incorporated into a liquid as watery as beer?

• Humulene + detergent + beer. It's pretty much the recipe for Coors Light. Aug 8, 2021 at 23:13
• The question is how much humulene are you expecting in 5% ethanol-95% H2O? Everything dissolves in everything (again at a low level). The concentration of water in toluene is about 500 ppm. That is a lot and detectable by GC. Benzene dissolves about 1000 ppm water. Pure water dissolves about 0.17 % benzene. Aug 9, 2021 at 0:01
• A good starting point is the ampersand brew mentioned in the linked question. It's list of ingredients should hopefully contain a little more than 'stabilizing agents' Aug 9, 2021 at 5:34
• The more straightforward answer, similar to "is the dose that makes a poison" is in the comment by M. Farroq. It points to the relative amounts and this brings along that beer is a complex solution. Everyone knows the joke "what having sex on a kayak and Xoors have to do each other? “? Ans: fucking closed to water. The latter is OoT :)) Aug 9, 2021 at 9:39
• @nilay because of the mixed voting record on this question I have only +44 rep from it, so I have to settle for accepting an answer and thus +15 for the winner. I have an answer but typically wait a few days to "shop around". Aug 10, 2021 at 11:23