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swissbrew13 01-31-2013 07:38 PM

ipa question
I brewed a brewers best imperial IPA on 1/20. Was going to do 3 weeks primary and 3 weeks in bottles or so. I've read a few things that say ipa's are better when they are younger though. Should I only primary for 2 weeks? Any thoughts?

dstranger99 01-31-2013 07:49 PM

I think beer is considered "young" only once it's bottled or kegged, I'd leave it in the primary for at least a month....

Nuggethead 01-31-2013 07:55 PM

Younger doesn't mean shorten fermentation, it means shorten storage time. Once the 3 week ferment and 3 week bottling are done, it "MAY" be better drinking within a month or two rather than after being stored for 6 months so as to retain more of the hop aromas.

TopherM 01-31-2013 08:13 PM

The maturation time required for any beer is usually a function of the ABV. More ABV = more required conditioning time.

Looks like that BB Imperial IPA is 7.3% ABV if you followed the recipe. I would give that one about 2-3 weeks in primary then AT LEAST 6-8 weeks in bottles to carb and condition. The ABV also makes the yeast sluggish during carbonation, so this one is literally going to take about 4 weeks just to carb up properly.

YES, the hop aroma is going to fade somewhat, but that's the tradeoff you made when you decided to do an Imperial.

The best way to combat that would be to dryhop with about 1 oz of the same hop you used as your aroma addition in the original recipe for a full week right before you bottle. That will give you as much aroma as you are going to get in an imperial due to the maturation schedule.

If you drink this one early, it will have an alcohol bite. If you give it ample time to mature, the alcohol taste will smooth out.

That's about what you're facing. Good luck!

jethro55 01-31-2013 08:37 PM

+1 for 3 weeks in primary.

Yooper 01-31-2013 09:02 PM

For IPAs and IIPAs, I do the regular "ferment until done, then wait until it's clearing", and then dryhop and package. It's usually about 10 days or so when I dryhop, and then package on about day 15-17. In a well made beer, there isn't any advantage to a super long primary.

Pontiac_Guy 01-31-2013 09:14 PM

Well this just went from zero to sixty

jethro55 01-31-2013 09:14 PM

Just put the BB India Black Ale to secondary for dry hopping today. A similar brew, though not quite as high on ABV. Tasted at 2 weeks primary and again at 3 weeks. The difference was overwhelming. I guess it could have improved that fast in secondary.

twalte 01-31-2013 09:16 PM


Originally Posted by Pontiac_Guy (Post 4849799)
Well this just went from zero to sixty

That guy is just posting stupid immature statements in several threads. Some grade school must have a snow day.

phuff7129 01-31-2013 09:25 PM

First, I really believe an IPA has to be dry hopped. I add my dryhops into my primary at 3 weeks, dry hop for a week, and then bottle. Usually 3-4 weeks in the bottle does the trick. 7-8 weeks from grain to glass works most of the time but some beers just take their own time.

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