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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Brew Science > Would love a 2nd look at my IPA recipe & Water profile - first timer
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Old 03-16-2012, 06:28 AM   #1
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Default Would love a 2nd look at my IPA recipe & Water profile - first timer

Hi fellas, this is the first time we've made an IPA using built up DI water. We usually just use Arrowhead Mountain Spring, and we've made kick ass beers (from saisons to IPA's) with that. But this one we are starting with DI water and adding salts. I used EZwaterCalculator for it...

After additions of CaSO4 and MgSO4 (and acid malt), here is our profile.
Water Profile:
Ca: 76
Mg: 18
Na: 0
Cl: 0
SO4: 263
RA: -216
Alk as CaCO3: -151
Estimated Mash pH: 5.42

The recipe uses:
10 lbs 12oz 2-Row
2 lbs Maris Otter
1 lb Carapils
1 lb Melanoidin Malt
8oz crystal 40
4oz Acid Malt

I've recently just learned all I know about water chemistry by listening to The Brewing Network's shows with John Palmer as well as other random message board research and whatnot. I just would love some thoughts/confirmation that this will work. I'm pretty confident in it, considering that the mash pH falls where it needs to be, and the profile has a good amount of Sulfate to really firm up our bitterness (we are hardcore San Diego IPA drinkers). I've seen water profiles with much much higher sulfates, so I think this looks ok, but should I maybe aim lower on the sulfate, like more towards 100? (which would mean I'd probably need to add just a bit more acid malt to bring pH back down a bit, I believe).

Any help is MAJORLY appreciated! Cheers!
Steve

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Old 04-07-2012, 03:05 AM   #2
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122 views - no water adjusters though.

It must be tough working with city water.

Our local water seems to work just fine.

Your recipe sounds tasty. There is a lot in there to add body to the head.

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Old 04-07-2012, 04:45 AM   #3
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Melanoidin in an IPA is blasphemy!

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Old 04-07-2012, 04:51 AM   #4
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use the water as is. cut the carapils to .25 or maybe .5 at most (unless you want it SWEET). remove the melanoiden. remove the acid malt.

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Old 04-07-2012, 04:42 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmurph6 View Post
Melanoidin in an IPA is blasphemy!
This is a maltbill for one of San Diego's best IPA's. Given to me by the owner of Alpine Beer Company. This recipe that was created for his beer was actually a play off of Blind Pig. They called Vinnie up and asked for help creating something very similar to Blind Pig and Vinnie, although he didn't tell them exactly what to do, put them in the direction that created this recipe Alpine uses. Granted, this particular beer (can you guess it?) is a touch more malty and darker than Blind Pig, and believe me, I HATE malty IPA's, but this specific beer just WORKS. Alpine knows what they are doing.

Beer has been in bottles for a week, can't wait to try it in another week!
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Old 04-07-2012, 07:15 PM   #6
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Its unlikely that the acid malt was needed. Was the mash pH checked? I've got the feeling that the beer may be a little tarter than expected, but it should be still good.

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Old 04-07-2012, 07:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mabrungard View Post
Its unlikely that the acid malt was needed. Was the mash pH checked? I've got the feeling that the beer may be a little tarter than expected, but it should be still good.
We actually left the acid malt out. With the mineral additions the pH was just under 5.6 so that was good enough for me. The tastes before dry hopping and before bottling were superb.
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Old 04-07-2012, 08:30 PM   #8
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So your 1.7% sauermalz addition would have taken you to, theoretically, 5.6 - 0.17 = 5.43.

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Old 04-07-2012, 08:45 PM   #9
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So your 1.7% sauermalz addition would have taken you to, theoretically, 5.6 - 0.17 = 5.43.
But then residual alkalinity would have been -200'ish. I know RA can be negative, but in all the stuff I've read and listened to, I've never seen anyone refer to RA as THAT negative. So would I have been better off with an RA closer to 0, and my pH 5.6'ish, or with pH at a more desirable 5.4, but with an RA of -200? That's was one of my biggest concerns with my water treatment, this issue of such a negative RA.
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Old 04-07-2012, 11:57 PM   #10
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It really doesn't matter what your RA is. What matters is what your pH is. RA is being used here as a proxy for buffering capacity. It was never intended to be used in this manner but since it is defined as

alkalinity - [Ca++]/3.5 - [Mg++]/7

it is clearly possible to have negative RA. Any solution which has a pH less than the pH used to define alkalinity will have negative RA because it has negative alkalinity. Five gal DI water with 2 mL lactic acid added to it will have an alkalinity of -39 if the defining pH is 4.3 (-49 if the defining pH is 4.7). With 4 mL the RA would be -99 (4.7 definition) and -82 (4.3 definition). Thus while technically you can have a negative RA it isn't terribly meaningful in absolute terms unless you define the end point of the titration used to measure alkalinity and there are various choices for that. None of the spreadsheets I'm aware of consider that aspect of it yet still define RA and make predictions of mash pH and and I think they do it by looking at RA differences. Indeed alkalinity is a measure of the buffering capacity from aribitrary pH (the pH at which the sample arrives in the laboratory) to a specified pH (the defining pH). This is the correct way to predict mash pH so while the approach taken by the spreadsheets may not be robust in that they ignores the fact that slope of the malt titration curve isn't necessarily linear, the fact that they get reasonable estimates of pH in some cases (like this one), or, depending on your definition of reasonable, many cases, is a testimonial to the effect that it sort of works.

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