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Guzdaman 10-18-2012 02:51 PM

IPA Basics?
Hey Everyone! I'm looking at brewing a grain/malt IPA. This is the first IPA I will be making so i'm not exactly sure where to start on this. I would like to try dry hopping for the first time as well. All of my previous brews were made from ingredient kits which were fine but I really want to start getting the taste and and feel of what types of ingredients will contribute what types of aroma or taste to my brews. So for this IPA I want to pick out my own ingredients at a local homebrew store and make it from scratch (sort-a). I would really appreciate it if I could get some advise as to what a typical IPA recipe would include and also any input of certain ingredients that you personally like for IPA's or know work better for IPA's. And maybe some dry hopping tips/techniques if possible. I thank you all in advance.

Okole maluna!

tippetsnapper 10-18-2012 03:08 PM

If your plan is to brew a west coast style IPA, the vast majority of your grain should be base malt to allow the hop flavors to dominate. You can add some light crystal malt or wheat malt, but I like to keep it to ~15% or less for my total grain bill. Consider using only one type of hop to gain an understanding of the flavors it imparts. What I do for dry hopping is wait until primary fermentation is pretty much over, where its only bubbling once a minute or so. I have a nylon straining bag that I sometimes weight down with a spare stainless fitting or two, that I'll sanitize and add pellet hops for a week, then rack into keg. If you get into kegging, I have also let the beer finish in primary rack to keg and put the bag of hops in the keg as well. You can always repeat the process adding more hops for another few days or a week to get more aroma. Hope that gets you on your way.

bobbrews 10-18-2012 03:14 PM

Can you be more specific as to what you're after? Maybe list some commericial examples of what you enjoy and/or your overall desire/goal for this beer. All IPAs are not created equal. Also, what size is your kettle and are you doing partial mash or all grain? You should also know your water chemistry and if it requires any mineral adjustments.

Typical recipe for an American IPA will usually include (but not limited to):

American 2-row
American Carapils or Wheat Malt (optional)
American Light crystal (optional)
Corn sugar (optional)

American Pacific Northwest Hops (at least one high alpha variety)

Clean, American Ale yeast

Guzdaman 10-18-2012 05:16 PM

@Tippetsnapper, Thanks for the reply and yes that helped out a lot. I appreciate it.

@Bobbrews, I like a decently Hoppy IPA, I have had the dogfish head 60 minute IPA and really enjoyed it. I know my first IPA will probably not be as good as that but I would like it to have a good hop kick to it, not over powering, just a good plain northwest IPA with the ABV sitting anywhere between 6-9%. I have a 3 gallon kettle for the boil and a 5 gallon carboy for the fermentation. I am planning on doing a partial mash and I'm seeking out amounts of ingredients as well. Unfortunately I don't have the proper tools to know my water chemistry at the moment so I am just going with what I have. I'm thinking of a recipe such as (Not talking about specifics for now):

6 pounds of a light grain.
2 pounds of a light LME.
4oz of hops, 3 for the boil and 1 for dry hopping.
1 whitelabs yeast packet.

But I really don't know if that would produce enough fermentables, or if that is enough hops to get the true IPA hop kick.

So, taking the recipe above (if you want to call it a recipe), what would you change/add/remove/ anything! haha.

Sorry, I know i'm a little all over the place with this but I really just don't know where to start and what direction to go in...

bnilguy 10-18-2012 05:56 PM

I don't think you could mash 6 pounds of grain in a 3 gallon kettle.

I've made many IPAs with extract and steeping alone. I aim to get a huge majority of the sugars from DME. If I mash, usually it's a pound or two of Vienna or Munich.

Hop wise..I think you'll want to use more. I typically use about 6 to 8. I also like to get most of the bitter from a high alpha at 60, then put the bulk in the last 15 minutes or less. I'm curious what you want from the hops..bitterness? Flavor? Dank? Citrus?, Floral?...etc.

Do you want a sweeter IPA or a dryer one?

I'll also agree on keeping the recipe simple. I'd go with 1 or 2 hops and honestly I'd skip the mash unless you're really set on it. I'd pick a higher alpha with good flavor so you can use it in multiple places..(Columbus, Simcoe come to mind)..then have another hop for the citrus fruity notes..(Cascade, Amarillo...)

My simple IPA is usually something like as follows:

6 lb Light DME /6.6 Light LME
.5 lb Crystal (10-60) for dryer, double that for sweeter.


1 oz @60 of a high alpha
2 oz @ 15 for flavor
1 oz @ flameout
2 or 3 for dryhop

kingwood-kid 10-18-2012 06:11 PM

There's a DFH 60 minute clone right here: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f69/dogfish-head-60-minute-clone-ag-extract-25709/ DFH-60 is far from a typical Northwest IPA; it's much maltier and lacks the heavy-handed use of Cascade hops that I think are legally required to be labelled a Northwest IPA.

You can browse the IPA section of the recipe forum to get a feel for constructing a recipe. Once you have a rough handle on things, plug the ingredients into a recipe calculator like hopville.com, brewersfriend.com or any other you like and adjust as you see fit. For example, your recipe would barely have enough fermentables to qualify as an APA; you'd need about 25-100% more for an IPA. As for hops, you need enough added at the beginning of the boil to get adequate bitterness. This amount will vary wildly from hop to hop and recipe to recipe. You also need to add enough late in the boil to get the flavor/aroma you're looking for, plus more for the dry-hop. 3oz is probably not near enough for any northwest IPA. One pack of liquid yeast won't be enough for a 5-gallon batch of IPA. You have several options, but the best/easiest/cheapest/most-reliable is to use a pack of US-05 dry yeast. If your tap water tastes fine on its own and has made good beer for you already, you're probably fine to keep brewing with it.

If you're relatively new to brewing, you should read http://howtobrew.com/ Very helpful and 100% free online. It won't answer all your questions by any means, but you will get an excellent foundation to build on.

Guzdaman 10-18-2012 08:08 PM

Awesome info guys! Truly appreciate it.

So with the help of hopville.com I have put together a recipe based on the info you all have provided. Check it out and let me know what you think and what you would change... and I actually didn't know the difference between mashing and steeping, I thought they were the same. So as bnilguy suggested, i'm scrapping mashing and only doing a steep.

6lb light DME
6lb light LME
.5lb Crystal 20L

2oz Willamette for 60min
2oz Cascade for 15min
2oz Willamette for 7 day dry hop

Wyeast northwest ale

Estimated ABV = 7.6%
Estimated IBUs = 49.9

@Kingwood-kid, the yeast you recommended wasn't on the list of yeast's and I don't remember seeing it at my local homebrew store... Any other yeast recommendations?
@bnilguy, honestly, I couldn't tell you exactly what I want from the hops. I don't really have an experienced taste pallet yet. I just know that I like IPA's, and IPA's are usually pretty hoppy. Sorry, I know that's not much help.

According to hopville, dryhopping does NOT add to the bitterness of the beer, as I thought it did. So is dry hopping just for aroma? Also, I am assuming Willamette and Cascade hops have roughly the same amount of acidity because I switched up the order of hop implementation in this recipe and it gave the same amount of IBUs if either of the hops were used for the full 60min boil. Does this sound about right?

bnilguy 10-18-2012 08:37 PM

Are you using both 6 lb LME and 6 lb DME? That would be way too much..

Also, just noticed that your carboy is 5 gallons. You would probably want to change this to a 4 gallon batch since you'll need the headspace.

Some hop boil basics..you need the hot water to get bitterness..the longer the boil, the more bitterness you get..but boiling drives off all those flavor and aroma oils..so 60 minute boils for the bulk of bitter..the mid boil adds (5-30) for flavor..and the dry hop for aroma..but smell influences those taste buds...So you should have all those bases covered.

I'll agree that US-05 would be a great and easy choice... But I've also used a vial/smack pack of liquid without a starter with no issues.

Guzdaman 10-18-2012 08:49 PM

Gotcha, so I actually found that yeast you recommended, hows about this:

3lb light DME
6lb light LME
1lb Crystal 20L

2oz Willamette for 60min
2oz Cascade for 15min
2oz Willamette for 7 day dry hop

1tsp Irish moss last 15min of boil

Safale US-05 dry yeast

Estimated ABV = 6.5%
Estimated IBUs = 56.8

I think I might go with this recipe, unless anyone sees something really out of wack? or has other opinions on it?

Murdog 10-18-2012 09:06 PM

I would use Amarillo, Simcoe, and Cascade. I would use Wyeast 1056 American Ale yeast. I have had excellent results with that yeast.

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