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Old 03-02-2010, 04:48 AM   #1
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Default Aging before dry-hopping...

I'm looking at brewing another IIPA, very loosely based on Pliny (even though I've never had it). My last IIPA (a black IIPA) was too caramel-ly and not nearly hoppy enough.

My question is:

When brewing a high gravity beer. Has anyone let the beer age in secondary for a month or two before adding the dry hop additions?

It seems like if you dry-hop and then age, the hops would fade, but if you wait... let the alcohol subdue, flavors blend, etc. and then add dry hops for 7-10 days, the hop profile in the final product would be a lot brighter.

Any thoughts?

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Old 03-02-2010, 05:02 AM   #2
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I don't see anything wrong with it, but I have never had to age before dry hopping.

Depending on the hops, I think hops need to mellow a bit - they can be harsh immediately after dry hopping.

I would simply taste the beer before either aging or dry hopping and see what you think.

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Old 03-02-2010, 01:47 PM   #3
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I'll probably end up compromising - 2 weeks primary, 2 weeks secondary, 1 additional week dry-hopping in secondary. I don't think 8% needs that long to rest and come together, especially at low ferm temps. I'm probably going to use 1056 at 60-62 .deg F, ramping up to 65-67 deg F the last three days of primary.

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Old 03-02-2010, 02:03 PM   #4
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Sounds like a good plan. Let us know how it works out.

I have tried many people's input here, and found what works for me and my equipment. That's what makes places like HBT priceless.

My final process includes 2-3 weeks in the primary, until FG is reached. Then, into a keg for dry-hopping (if needed for the style) and then cold crash for a week. Finally, transfer to another keg and age, if required.

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Old 11-02-2010, 11:05 PM   #5
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I definitely practice this with all my dry-hopped ales. My rule-of-thumb is simple. The final 7 days of secondary fermentation is the dry hopping period. It could be in secondary for 1, 3, 5 weeks, whatever. The final 7 is the dry hopping. I do this because I like my IPAs and CDAs to be strong, and I want there to be enough hop aroma left in the bottles by the time I start opening bottles. I definitely agree with where you are coming from. I think you should do it.

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Old 11-03-2010, 12:14 AM   #6
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I've had good results dry hopping more than once. You can 'refresh' the aroma and/or change it with a different hop.

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