Finally - a good "session" IPA

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kpr121

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Something along these lines is going to be my first brew in about 12 months! As long as I can get my equipment up and running, brew day is this Saturday and will be serving at an annual "sno-ball" softball tournament in late February, so the quick turnaround times are key!

Will be sorting through the hops I've kept vacuumed and at freezer temps, hopefully they are still good.

Thanks for documenting the experimentation!
 

kpr121

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This is what I'm going with tomorrow:

13 lbs 2 row
4 lbs Munich
1 lb c-60
1 lb flaked oats
1 lb acid
1 lb carapils

Blended cascade and us goldings at approx 2:1 ratio.

1 oz 60 min
2 oz 10 min
2.5 oz flameout

Dry hops tbd
 

kpr121

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Hmm looks like I'm a little light on the hops, might have to crack open something else to add to the late addition... Question is what? I have Columbus, citra, centennial, willamette, warrior, sirachi ace, crystal, Belma, and mosaic...along with more cascade.

Also will be using us05 as its all I got on hand.
 

kpr121

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Ugh just realized I used a whole pound of acid malt in this... Normally I'd use like 4-6 oz to help lower ph in pale malt beers.

What's odds that it'll be noticeable/detract from the beer?
 
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Ugh just realized I used a whole pound of acid malt in this... Normally I'd use like 4-6 oz to help lower ph in pale malt beers.

What's odds that it'll be noticeable/detract from the beer?
Wait...... I just looked back at your earlier posts. Your recipe says 21 pounds of grain.... and then you say you added DME on top of it to get to 1.050. For 5 gallons? That does not make any sense. Did you actually use that much grain and DME for this beer????
 
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10 gal batch
ok...... that makes sense then. 1lb of acid malt in 10 gallons is probably toward the higher end. But, I don't think it is totally crazy. My guess is you will be ok with that. Plus...... you aren't taking it out now, so let it ride. I really think you will be ok. That is only 5% or so - not outrageous.
 

kpr121

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Thanks, yea it's not like I'm going to be dumping it tonight or anything... I'm going to let it ride and see what It brings!

I was just real excited about a successful brew day and then it hit me. There's not much I can do to offset that right? I mashed at 155-156 so maybe a little more nonfermentable sugar will offset the sour?


I'll be sure to update with how it turns out
 
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To be honest, I would be a little surprised if you got any "sour" out of 5% acidulated malt. I would be surprised if you can tell at all. Be interested to hear how it turns out though.
 

kpr121

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I'll be happy if that's true! Thanks for the input, will def update with how it goes.
 

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Well first impressions of my version are okay. I started at 1.049, or 12.2°P, and finished at 1.011, or just under 3°P. It does not feel thin or lacking. I'm thinking about dropping the crystal and upping the mash temp.

The hops are lacking. It tastes like an apa. I think I'll up the total dry hop, but do it over 2 3-day dry hop sessions. Also I think I'll cut 30% of the whirlpool and add them at 5 minutes so they get some actual boil time. I also need to analyze my water and possibly bump up the gypsum. I added a bit to a glass and it helped accentuate the hops. So some of my problems are water based.
 

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I just calculated abv and looks like right at 5%. I'd like to bring it down to 4.5 so upping the fg and slight drop on the og and I should be good.
 

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There's a lot of inspiration in this thread. I'm going to take some of the tips and brew a session india red ale and a session rye ipa.
 
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I just calculated abv and looks like right at 5%. I'd like to bring it down to 4.5 so upping the fg and slight drop on the og and I should be good.
My last one was 4.0% ...... and I am wondering if I don't need to take it UP to 4.5%.

Still not entirely sure what to make of this last attempt. There are some things I like about it, and some things I don't. Counting on my blind tasters to critique it. To be honest, it is almost like the flavor has not stablized or something - one day it tastes really pretty good, another day I am not so happy with it. Weird.

I am starting to plan version 4.0 ........ going back to 1968 yeast again. I think that matters. Gonna tweak my water a touch. Going to use a bit of epsom salt to get mg and sulfate..... not a lot, just a little. Going to do something different with hops - although not sure on details. Probably go with a later bittering addition instead of 60 minutes. 5 minute addition and flame out and dry hop. Varieties to be determined.

I do have 2 other IPA's fermenting right now in the 1.05-1.055 range - one is all 7 C's hops with Conan yeast. The other is more of an english/spicy slant with all hopping from Pearle/willamette/Glacier/Tettnang. We will see.
 
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On a related note - I mentioned an offshoot version of this recipe I did, back in post #15.........

I also did an offshoot of this recipe - not really a session IPA - just a session american ale. Very generic. Looking for something to replace "american wheat" in my line up for a good, basic drinking beer that appeals to anyone. Think I found it. The same grain bill as Version 2. Used 1.5 ounces of Liberty at 40 minutes, 2 ounces of Wilamette just before flame out. Fermented with 1056 in the 62-66 range. It is GREAT. Can't believe what a good beer it is. 4.1%ABV. Great body, flavor, mouthfeel. Some hops, but nothing that is real pronounced. 100% RO with 55ppm of Ca, Sulfate and Chloride. Really pleased with this one for sure. It has only been on the gas for 2 days, but it is a real drinker. Perfect for introducing people to homebrew.
I really loved this version (although not an IPA at all). I just rebrewed it again this last weekend because everyone that had it just loved it. At any rate, I had entered it as a "blonde" in a recent competition (BUZZ Boneyard Brew Off). It won its category and ended up 3rd overall in the BOS. It was really a super drinkable beer. It is gonna be a regular in my line up for sure. If anyone is looking for something like that, it is a really simple, easy drinking beer.
 

Brewmex41

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What do you all think about yeast for session ipas? I was thinking either Bavarian Lager or London ESB. I figure the lager yeast will let the malt and the hops shine through more, but the London esb is my go to English yeast and i think it would ferment less and leave more body and sweetness behind to make up for the lower OG. Any thoughts?
 
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I have used a few different yeasts on the brews I have done recently.....all in the 1.040-1.050 range and hoppy. I can't say that any were "bad" - I used 1968, 1318, 1056 and some Conan I stepped up from cans of Heady Topper.

I think the 1968 (002Whitelabs) is a really good one. I also just transferred a 4.8% 7C's pale ale using the conan yeast...... and man was it good going into the keg. Dry hopping right now.

I would use the ESB yeast before the lager yeast.
 

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I've been working on a recipe for a session IPA, planning on making it a bit malty to overcome the low gravity like you seem to be doing here. I also like some wheat in my IPAs.

Currently my proposed grainbill is 70% 2-row, 11.5% each wheat malt and Munich 20L (20L is the primary option for Munich here), 3.5% each Melanoiden and Carared to an OG of 1.042. First wort to 20 IBU, whirlpool to 60 IBU (per Beersmith's calculations, which seem to be a bit high in my experience), then a couple consecutive 1 oz. dry hops, all with the same 2-3 hop mix. Dry yeast, maybe S-04, but US-05, BRY-97, Notty, and most other Fermentis and Danstar yeasts are options (as is a weird dry version of 1332 Northwest Ale...).

A few questions:

1 - How does the grainbill look?
2 - Hop suggestions? I'm thinking a two or three hop mix from the following: Rakau, El Dorado, Ahtanum, and Azacca. As secondary options, I've got enough Cascade, Chinook, Columbus, Simcoe, Amarillo, and Calypso to throw their hats in the ring as well. One of these days I'll dry hop a bunch of cheap Chinese beers for a real sniff and mix test...
3 - Yeast thoughts? I can't get liquid here without a ton of hassle and expense, and I'm not equipped to do starters or slants (which would justify going to the trouble), so it's all dry, but most dry yeasts are available here.
 

Brewmex41

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I have used a few different yeasts on the brews I have done recently.....all in the 1.040-1.050 range and hoppy. I can't say that any were "bad" - I used 1968, 1318, 1056 and some Conan I stepped up from cans of Heady Topper.

I think the 1968 (002Whitelabs) is a really good one. I also just transferred a 4.8% 7C's pale ale using the conan yeast...... and man was it good going into the keg. Dry hopping right now.

I would use the ESB yeast before the lager yeast.
Alright i have been brewing lagers out of necessity lately. Been banished to the garage where fermentation temps are staying around 48.
 
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I've been working on a recipe for a session IPA, planning on making it a bit malty to overcome the low gravity like you seem to be doing here. I also like some wheat in my IPAs.

Currently my proposed grainbill is 70% 2-row, 11.5% each wheat malt and Munich 20L (20L is the primary option for Munich here), 3.5% each Melanoiden and Carared to an OG of 1.042. First wort to 20 IBU, whirlpool to 60 IBU (per Beersmith's calculations, which seem to be a bit high in my experience), then a couple consecutive 1 oz. dry hops, all with the same 2-3 hop mix. Dry yeast, maybe S-04, but US-05, BRY-97, Notty, and most other Fermentis and Danstar yeasts are options (as is a weird dry version of 1332 Northwest Ale...).

A few questions:

1 - How does the grainbill look?
2 - Hop suggestions? I'm thinking a two or three hop mix from the following: Rakau, El Dorado, Ahtanum, and Azacca. As secondary options, I've got enough Cascade, Chinook, Columbus, Simcoe, Amarillo, and Calypso to throw their hats in the ring as well. One of these days I'll dry hop a bunch of cheap Chinese beers for a real sniff and mix test...
3 - Yeast thoughts? I can't get liquid here without a ton of hassle and expense, and I'm not equipped to do starters or slants (which would justify going to the trouble), so it's all dry, but most dry yeasts are available here.
I think the grain bill looks good. and for yeast, I would go with whichever one is most likely to leave you with a few extra gravity points (in the 1.012 range if possible). Something relatively clean, or with low-moderate fruity esters.

Hops - I have almost no experience with the first group of hops you listed..... But, I am sure they would be good and maybe some others have more experience with them. Bittering with chinook, columbus or simcoe and using combination of Simcoe/Amarillo/cascade/calypso late and dry hop would probably be a good combination.

*I am still really experimenting with the hops..... I brewed a couple recent batches and moved the first hop addition to 30-40 min. and did more late hops.

*I am probably going to push my grain bill back toward 1.048ish and 4.5%-4.8% beer. I did two that were pushing 4.0%...... and they just were not quite there. They were decent, and maybe it was other aspects of my brew (hop combination, lack of patience on my part to give the beers time).... but, the ones I brewed in the 4.5-5.0% range were much better.

*I have one I am dry hopping right now that I am pretty excited about..... 4.8%, all 7C's hops (2 oz. @40 min., 4 oz. hop stand, 2 oz. dry hop.) Conan yeast. It was really good when it went into the keg. going to take the dry hop out tonight, and chill, carb, and hoping next week it is what I have been looking for.
 
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Have not had a chance to update my recent attempts at this session IPA.

I updated my initial post with my most recent session IPA attempt (4.6%)- by far my best one I have brewed. Really good. For a couple folks that tried some of my earlier attempts...... I feel bad. This recent attempt is significantly better. Smoother - no harshness at all. I rebrewed it recently taking out chinook hops and replacing with centennial/cascade - looking for a bit more citrus and less pine. We shall see where that goes..........

I added this to the very first post, but will put updated attempt here too:

68% Rahr 2 Row
17% Munich
4.5% Wheat
4.5% Flaked Oats
2% Carapils
2% Caramel 20
1% Honey Malt

Hops:
.75 oz. Warrior (60)
.25 oz. Columbus (30)
.33 oz. Amarillo (10)
.33 oz. Simcoe (10)
1oz. each at flame out, with 30 minute hopstand @180ish: Citra, Simcoe, Columbus, Amarillo, Chinook

1oz. each of the same (as flameout) for dry hop. In a CO2 purged secondary for 5 days.

Used 1056.

Water targets were:
Ca = 64
MG = 8
Na = 8
Sulfate = 150
Chloride = 30
Bicarb = 16
Mash pH 5.36

100% RO water

*Basically, I used my grain bill with the hop schedule found in the following thread - Kelsey McNair Session IPA with Stone/Ballast Point.
https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f14/ston...ration-201080/

I rebrewed this same beer but took out the chinook and replaced with Centennial/Cascade (Chinook is not a huge favorite of mine). I also used Conan yeast in recent batch. Not sure how it is yet - still in primary.
 

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Mine was a minor disaster. Old hops (thought just freezing them in Ziplocs after opening would be enough, used about 4 months after opening), miscalculated aa% of my hops mix when I got El Dorado and Ahtanum mixed up, and too much malty grains. The result is too many IBUs, roughly zero hops aroma, and too much malt. The good news is that I used S-04 so it basically tastes (to my limited palate) like an overbittered English bitter, so it's not a dumper, just nothing to be very proud of...

Oh, not to mention I forgot to assist for temp and table sugar versus corn sugar when bottling, so it's overcarbonated to boot...
 

kpr121

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Have not had a chance to update my recent attempts at this session IPA.



I updated my initial post with my most recent session IPA attempt (4.6%)- by far my best one I have brewed. Really good. For a couple folks that tried some of my earlier attempts...... I feel bad. This recent attempt is significantly better. Smoother - no harshness at all. I rebrewed it recently taking out chinook hops and replacing with centennial/cascade - looking for a bit more citrus and less pine. We shall see where that goes..........



I added this to the very first post, but will put updated attempt here too:



68% Rahr 2 Row

17% Munich

4.5% Wheat

4.5% Flaked Oats

2% Carapils

2% Caramel 20

1% Honey Malt



Hops:

.75 oz. Warrior (60)

.25 oz. Columbus (30)

.33 oz. Amarillo (10)

.33 oz. Simcoe (10)

1oz. each at flame out, with 30 minute hopstand @180ish: Citra, Simcoe, Columbus, Amarillo, Chinook



1oz. each of the same (as flameout) for dry hop. In a CO2 purged secondary for 5 days.



Used 1056.



Water targets were:

Ca = 64

MG = 8

Na = 8

Sulfate = 150

Chloride = 30

Bicarb = 16

Mash pH 5.36



100% RO water



*Basically, I used my grain bill with the hop schedule found in the following thread - Kelsey McNair Session IPA with Stone/Ballast Point.

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f14/ston...ration-201080/



I rebrewed this same beer but took out the chinook and replaced with Centennial/Cascade (Chinook is not a huge favorite of mine). I also used Conan yeast in recent batch. Not sure how it is yet - still in primary.

Did you do two flameout/whirlpool additions or just one? Did you chill to 180 before adding them?

I'm a big fan of whirl pooling since my last ipa I made.
 

sandyeggoxj

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Mine came out at 5% and 1.010fg. Too low. Going to mash at 160 next time. I am brewing a dark american mild right now and I mashed it at around 158. Lower than I wanted. This is 10.5ºP OG.

I am going to rebrew this soon. Maybe in 2 weeks. I want to improve my version. All of the comments are a touch bitter, nice and piney with a little fruit but a little bit minerally. I don't know my water profile but I don't know how to change the minerally nature. Perhaps different hop profile. I'll probably drop the wheat in favor of more crystal malts. I am thinking of a little c20 instead.

So, less IBU, more hoppy-ness. Maybe a touch of gypsum in the mash. I add around 450ppm of sulfate and 180 calcium to my mash on my big IPAs. Maybe the same method but a third as much salts.
 
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Mine was a minor disaster. Old hops (thought just freezing them in Ziplocs after opening would be enough, used about 4 months after opening), miscalculated aa% of my hops mix when I got El Dorado and Ahtanum mixed up, and too much malty grains. The result is too many IBUs, roughly zero hops aroma, and too much malt. The good news is that I used S-04 so it basically tastes (to my limited palate) like an overbittered English bitter, so it's not a dumper, just nothing to be very proud of...

Oh, not to mention I forgot to assist for temp and table sugar versus corn sugar when bottling, so it's overcarbonated to boot...
I had a few that I was none too proud of too. I am finding it one of the more difficult beers to brew well. The water/high hop levels and carbonation level all seem to make it pretty easy for the beer to become harsh if the balance is even a little bit off. I have probably brewed 8-10 of these in the last 4-5 months. I would say this recent update was somewhere between very good and outstanding. I had one other that was really good. I have had 1-2 that were borderline dumpers. The rest were somewhere in the area of mediocre to decent.
Brewing a 5.5% Citra/Centennial/Cascade APA/IPA today.
 
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Did you do two flameout/whirlpool additions or just one? Did you chill to 180 before adding them?

I'm a big fan of whirl pooling since my last ipa I made.
This was all one addition:
"1oz. each at flame out, with 30 minute hopstand @180ish: Citra, Simcoe, Columbus, Amarillo, Chinook"

I did chill it just briefly with my immersion chiller to bring it down from boiling into that 180 range before adding the hops. Then, I shut chiller off, added hops and swirled it every 5-10 minutes for 30+ minutes before chilling the rest of the way.

I have been doing this more and more with my recent APA/IPA's

I have a recent citra IPA where I added 3 oz. citra at 5 minutes and 5 ounces of citra in whirlpool/hopstand for 45 minutes...... I had planned to dryhop it, but it was so good in the fermenter that I sent it straight to a keg.
 
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I want to improve my version. All of the comments are a touch bitter, nice and piney with a little fruit but a little bit minerally. I don't know my water profile but I don't know how to change the minerally nature.

Maybe a touch of gypsum in the mash. I add around 450ppm of sulfate and 180 calcium to my mash on my big IPAs. Maybe the same method but a third as much salts.
If you don't know your waterprofile, and you are adding 450ppm of sulfate/180 calcium....... that seems like a very possible culprit in regard to "minerally" aspect. Maybe I am reading that wrong, but 450 sulfate is a lot, especially if it is being added to water that may already have minerals in it.
 

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If you don't know your waterprofile, and you are adding 450ppm of sulfate/180 calcium....... that seems like a very possible culprit in regard to "minerally" aspect. Maybe I am reading that wrong, but 450 sulfate is a lot, especially if it is being added to water that may already have minerals in it.
Sorry, had a couple beers... that is what I do for my big dipa. It works really well. I get about half my kettle volume from the sparge so into my kettle I about half those numbers. Does that make sense? For my session I didn't add any Salts.
 

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Im doing a session ipa today based on Pliny the elder

6lb NW Pale Ale malt
.5lb Crystal 10
.5lb Carapils
.75 lb corn sugar
1oz Columbus @60
1oz each whirlpool steep Amarillo centennial and simcoe then Dry Hop with all 4.
 

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I had a few that I was none too proud of too. I am finding it one of the more difficult beers to brew well. The water/high hop levels and carbonation level all seem to make it pretty easy for the beer to become harsh if the balance is even a little bit off. I have probably brewed 8-10 of these in the last 4-5 months. I would say this recent update was somewhere between very good and outstanding. I had one other that was really good. I have had 1-2 that were borderline dumpers. The rest were somewhere in the area of mediocre to decent.
Brewing a 5.5% Citra/Centennial/Cascade APA/IPA today.
Fresh hops would have gone a long way. Not miscalculating my AA% would have gone a long way too: I used 1:1 Rakau:El Dorado, but calculated the AA% as 11% instead of 15% because I got El Dorado mixed up with Ahtanum. If I had calculated better, the bitterness would at least be under control. As it is, not so much.

Unfortunately, my caramel amber ale in the fermenter has the same problem with stale hops. My one week gravity sample had a distinctive 'stale hops' flavor that I wouldn't have been able to identify until a few days ago when I cracked the first session IPA. Fortunately, seeing as it's still in the fermenter, there's still time to dry hop it with some of the relatively-few fresh hops I have left, so it should come out alright, if not as good as I had hoped.
 

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Do you guys think is would be good to consider the bitterness ratio (IBUs/SG) when making a session IPA recipe? If so, any tips on a good range to shoot for?
 
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Do you guys think is would be good to consider the bitterness ratio (IBUs/SG) when making a session IPA recipe? If so, any tips on a good range to shoot for?
I don't know if it is so much about a range, as it is about the way the hops are perceived.

My more successful ones used a small to modest bittering addition of a rather clean bittering hop - warrior, magnum, etc. Maybe 30-40 IBU.

Then a lesser amt of something with character at 15 (1/2 ounce) or 30 min. (1/4 ounce).......Something like columbus maybe.

Then everything else toward the end/flameout/hop stand/dry hop. I have been finding some good success with a big addition (6-8 ounces) at the end and a long hop stand starting around 185 degrees or so..... temps dropping after that. I have actually passed on dry hopping some IPA's after doing this as the beer was so good out of the fermenter.

Some of my session attempts were quite good in the fermenter and seemed to go down hill with the dry hopping.... so, wondering if this might be a good apporach for a future attempt.

Also, the perception of the hops can be impacted by the water profile you use and the types of hops you pick...... Like I said, the big problem I think is avoiding "harshness" on these beers as they approach 4.5% or so. I have had a lot more success in the 4.5-5.5% than I have had in the 4-4.5% range.
 

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I'd like to bump this thread to see if Yooper and the OP had success with their latest versions.

These recipes sound seriously YUMMY. Exactly what I am looking for - an IPA minus the liver shot.

Would like to know more about the process. Would anything about them preclude someone who's just recently gone AG (and albeit not flawlessly) from tackling OP's recipes?

I calculated about 70% efficiency on my last (first) AG batch of Blueberry Summer Ale. Using single step mash in IGLOO 5 gal cooler.

Cheers,

Wooden
 

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Deleted rest of the double post. Oops.
Cheers,

Wooden
 
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I'd like to bump this thread to see if Yooper and the OP had success with their latest versions.

These recipes sound seriously YUMMY. Exactly what I am looking for - an IPA minus the liver shot.

Would like to know more about the process. Would anything about them preclude someone who's just recently gone AG (and albeit not flawlessly) from tackling OP's recipes?

I calculated about 70% efficiency on my last (first) AG batch of Blueberry Summer Ale. Using single step mash in IGLOO 5 gal cooler.

Cheers,

Wooden
My more recent attempts at a "session type IPA" have shifted somewhat..... this is what I have been brewing a lot lately. Some elements are similar, others a bit different - but this is a much better beer (IMO) than the original in this post:
https://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=568046

The #1 thing I have learned brewing LOTS of these beers over the last 2 years is this: It is EASY for these beers to come off on the "harsh" and "thin" side.

I would definitely go with most of what I have in the above link. It is a bit higher gravity (1.050-1.055) but still not crazy. The water is important - what I have in the above link works well.

I have had less success using some of the traditional "west coast IPA" hops in these beers (Cascade, Centennial, Chinook). They just come off "dry" and a touch "harsh" - at least they do to me.

If you want to turn the linked beer into something less "NE IPA" -
*Shoot for a slightly lower pH (5.30-35)
*Use 1056 yeast
*Cold crash for a time before bottling/kegging
*Might need to use Gelatin to clear it possibly.

You could also skip the second dry hop it you are not quite to that point yet.... Just do the two hop additions in the kettle at the end of the boil. Then add one dry hop to primary at day 7 or so.

Personally - I think the linked recipe is better than the one in this post.... so I would start with the other one and maybe make some minor tweaks to get to where you are shooting for.
 

BigPerm

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Not to derail the thread, but I have a question about your 02 free dry hopping. Is there any rationale for why you couldn't use the same setup and serve from that keg (rather than transferring)? Not sure if that fine of mesh would cause excessive foaming by driving CO2 from solution. I've been thinking about something like this but have yet to try.
 
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Braufessor

Braufessor

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Not to derail the thread, but I have a question about your 02 free dry hopping. Is there any rationale for why you couldn't use the same setup and serve from that keg (rather than transferring)? Not sure if that fine of mesh would cause excessive foaming by driving CO2 from solution. I've been thinking about something like this but have yet to try.
You could - I really don't want the beer on hops for 2-4 weeks though as I drink the keg. You get all the "goodness" out of the hops in a couple days...... so, any of the hops, yeast, sediment that is in that keg is not doing your beer any good for sure. At best, it is hurting in minimally. At worst, it is gradually making your beer worse. Jumping it to a serving keg is super easy.

Plus - I don't want my dry hopping set up tied up in a keg I am drinking for 2-4 weeks. I brew this beer 3-4 times a month...... I need it for the next batch.
 
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