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Jaxford

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I've been eying the Austin Home Brew clone for Hopslam but have yet to pull the trigger. This seems like a complex IIPA and I'm wondering if anyone has brewed this version from Austin?

If so what hops where in it and did it clone close to the original?
 

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Being a huge fan of Bells Beer and Hopslam in particular, I believe the hops in question would be all Centennial. I'd love to find out for sure though, and get a complete ingredient list. I should call them or go down there and ask.

The reason I think that is because at a recent beer festival, I was talking with the owner of Founders Brewing, in Grand Rapids, and he said that Bells uses Centennial only in the Two Hearted Ale, and I think that Hopslam! is more or less a more potent version (although I believe it also has some honey in there as well, and possibly a slightly different grain bill.)

I've got some Cascade to use up, as well as some centennial coming up and was thinking about trying to make a slightly modified version to use some of each of those.
 

bdnoona

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Bells Hopslam Recipe ::: Brew365 - Homebrewing Recipes and Articles

I've never brewed it, but based on the taste of Hopslam, I don't think there is anyway that it is all Centennial. However, I've heard and read that is true regarding Two Hearted.

I ordered the Two Hearted clone from AHS, but due to the hop shortage at the time, they sent it with all Amarillo instead. I'm glad they did though, because it made a much better beer anyway IMO. Never tried their Hopslam clone though. Sorry, just rambling here.
 

Homercidal

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That article is pretty much just speculation.

Amarillo is a great hop IMO. The Founders Owner said that they use Amarillo and Simcoe as the hops for their Double Trouble, another great IIPA.

I'll be looking for a 6-pack of Hopslam! to come out soon, so I can start work on it. I wonder if anyone at the brewery could shed some light on this. I'm tempted to call the homebrew store attached to the brewery and just ask them what they hop and grain bills are.

I don't think it's a simple recipe. The 6-packs I've seen were all $16 each...
 

hopvine

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I was at Bell's Brewpub last weekend, and they actually had Hopslam on tap. I had a pint of Two Hearted and then a Hopslam immediately afterwards, which really allowed me to differentiate the flavors of both.

Based on that I am convinced that Hopslam contains something more than Centennials. It had a spicier hop character. It reminded me of Simcoe, but it's difficult to say for sure because the differentiation in flavor profile of the different hops can be pretty fuzzy.
 

Homercidal

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Yeah, this thread reminds me that the good beers are on their way! I have only had 2-3 bottles of it, at a couple of different places, so it's hard for me to note the exact taste, but I will try to get the recipe and buy a 6er or two to have on hand when I give this a go.

I also like how Hopslam gives you that funky feeling afterwards, like kind of sleepy and all happy and mellow. I'm a lightweight anyway, but this stuff kicks in quick!
 
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Jaxford

Jaxford

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They are going to email the recipe to me and if it's even close I,ll order it. I'll give you all the play by play. Updates to follow.
 

Trencher

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So what was the verdict? Been looking around for a Hopslam clone but it seems hard to come by.
 
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Jaxford

Jaxford

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So what was the verdict? Been looking around for a Hopslam clone but it seems hard to come by.
Well, I bought the kit and it has a truck load of hops. They use sugar instead of honey though. I have one recipe in front of this one so it will be a few weeks before I get to it. I'll let you know.
 
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Jaxford

Jaxford

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Going into the Keg tomorrow. Hard to measure the SRM while in fermentor but the color looks right. I'll publish my opinion along with brewing process and fermentation details soon.
 
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Jaxford

Jaxford

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What the 411? Decent?

Here's the deal...

I think this is a solid recipe from Austin Homebrew. The SRM, flavor and aroma are pretty right on. If I was going to use Jamil's standard for "is it a clone"... I'd have to say "not exactly". In other words if I brewed it again I'd change a few things. My general rule is that I never change the base recipe until I brew it at least once as it was designed.

I've timed this so that I could taste them side by side and while it's close, these are the things I'll change next time:

The instructions recommend mashing at 150. The clone version does not have a strong enough malt backbone. This is very obvious when tasting them together. Next time I'll mash a bit higher to retain residual sweetness.

Mouth feel is off... again I'd point to the mash temp needing a bump.

I'd also potentially knock the IBU's down a bit by moving some of the hops back. Also will add to the flavor profile.

Those things aside this is a great recipe and clone kit. This is a great beer and with some modification it will nail it as a clone. Hats off to AHB for putting it together.

Jaxford recommends...
 
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Jaxford

Jaxford

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Is this legit? I have heard that Bells is really cool and helpful also.
I think this was refering to Austin Homebrew. They were great and did actually send me the recipe before I purchased the kit. Good peeps...
 

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I actually email them and this is what I got:
Thank you for taking the time to contact us. I'm glad to hear that you are enjoying the Hopslam Ale. There are certain things about our recipes that we keep close to the vest, but I can offer some guidance. The malt bill is relatively straightforward: stick with 2-row base malt and just a bit of caramel malts for color. Add a healthy dollop of honey towards the end of the boil. Aim for an OG at knock-out of 21 Plato. You'll want to set up your mash rests for moderate fermentability: the sugars from the honey will be largely consumed, so you need malt dextrins around to keep the beer from getting too dry. Terminal gravity will be below 3 Plato.

Hopping is trickier, but I can tell you that we use a blend of modern American high-alpha aroma hops. I won't say that your exact choice of kettle hops doesn't matter, but I would focus more on the aroma side. A late kettle addition of Amarillo & generous dry-hopping with Simcoe provides the signature aromatic punch. Bitterness is in the upper 60 IBU range, less than most people think. Hopslam is all about hop flavor, not unrestrained bitterness.

You can culture yeast out of one of our bottles if you're comfortable with that; it's certainly the preferred option for a solid flavor match. The yeast in the Hopslam bottle is the yeast used for fermentation, but at 10% abv, but the yeast that isn't dead will be severely stressed. I would recommend culturing from a lower gravity beer such as Amber Ale, Best Brown Ale, etc.: the yeast is the same & likely to be in superior condition. Winter White Ale is a completely different strain, so don't use that. Otherwise, the local homebrew supply shops around here have found that most people looking to clone one of our recipes lean towards ale strains with a straightforward ester profile & good attenuation.
 

SpanishCastleAle

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What is the approx. color of Hopslam? I got some yeast from a Bell's Pale Ale and brewed a lowish gravity Pale Ale with it and plan to make a Two-Hearted clone with the cake. I plan to save some of the washed yeast from the Pale Ale and do this process again but make a Hopslam instead of the Two-Hearted.
 

remilard

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I actually email them and this is what I got:
Thank you for taking the time to contact us. I'm glad to hear that you are enjoying the Hopslam Ale. There are certain things about our recipes that we keep close to the vest, but I can offer some guidance. The malt bill is relatively straightforward: stick with 2-row base malt and just a bit of caramel malts for color. Add a healthy dollop of honey towards the end of the boil. Aim for an OG at knock-out of 21 Plato. You'll want to set up your mash rests for moderate fermentability: the sugars from the honey will be largely consumed, so you need malt dextrins around to keep the beer from getting too dry. Terminal gravity will be below 3 Plato.

Hopping is trickier, but I can tell you that we use a blend of modern American high-alpha aroma hops. I won't say that your exact choice of kettle hops doesn't matter, but I would focus more on the aroma side. A late kettle addition of Amarillo & generous dry-hopping with Simcoe provides the signature aromatic punch. Bitterness is in the upper 60 IBU range, less than most people think. Hopslam is all about hop flavor, not unrestrained bitterness.

You can culture yeast out of one of our bottles if you're comfortable with that; it's certainly the preferred option for a solid flavor match. The yeast in the Hopslam bottle is the yeast used for fermentation, but at 10% abv, but the yeast that isn't dead will be severely stressed. I would recommend culturing from a lower gravity beer such as Amber Ale, Best Brown Ale, etc.: the yeast is the same & likely to be in superior condition. Winter White Ale is a completely different strain, so don't use that. Otherwise, the local homebrew supply shops around here have found that most people looking to clone one of our recipes lean towards ale strains with a straightforward ester profile & good attenuation.
That's more help than I thought they would have given for this particular beer.

It has a lot of honey aroma and I've always suspected that have a unique technique for retaining it (eg adding it during fermentation or something), they might just use a very strongly flavored variety.
 

hopvine

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What is the approx. color of Hopslam? I got some yeast from a Bell's Pale Ale and brewed a lowish gravity Pale Ale with it and plan to make a Two-Hearted clone with the cake. I plan to save some of the washed yeast from the Pale Ale and do this process again but make a Hopslam instead of the Two-Hearted.
My best estimation (by holding up a pint of hopslam to my monitor and comparing to various SRM guides on the internet) is in the neighborhood of 8 SRM.
 

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Bells says the OG is 1087 with 10% APv. It has an orange flavor to it. There is definately
a honey after taste. Which would indicate centennial hops or orange blossum honey. I have a english IPA done with 7oz kent goldings that comes in around 1072. So I am going to add 2 lbs of orange blossum honey which should hit close to 1087. However
it willtake 6 to 9 months in secondary to mellow out the honey than one month or more in the bottle. Founders breakfast stout is way easier to clone.
 

hopvine

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Bells says the OG is 1087 with 10% APv. It has an orange flavor to it. There is definately
a honey after taste. Which would indicate centennial hops or orange blossum honey. I have a english IPA done with 7oz kent goldings that comes in around 1072. So I am going to add 2 lbs of orange blossum honey which should hit close to 1087. However
it willtake 6 to 9 months in secondary to mellow out the honey than one month or more in the bottle. Founders breakfast stout is way easier to clone.
6 to 9 months in the secondary is going to accomplish one thing: diminish your hop flavor and aroma. Hopslam has been in stores for 2 months now, and it has already begun to lose some of its character. Intensely hoppy beers are meant to be consumed as young as possible, when the hop flavors are at their most potent.

Honey is 98% fermentable; you may get some residual character with the orange blossom variety, but if you're waiting 6 to 9 months for it to mellow, why use it to begin with?
 

ameadrat

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My conversion to ipa's has been recent so my knowledge of hops is weak. I am a ttacked to hopslam because I started making wine than mead and than big dark and maltty. However I have one point of disagreement with you and that is IPA's which are large alcohol and highly hopped beers were a way to survive for transports taking British troops around the cape to India. Where they caught on for their maturity and were than shipped as a product to the those same ports from England. As to hopslam I have no history with maturing it. It was only a talking point which I am going through. Today I opened an afforementioned homebrew. added TBSP clover honey to a small glass and whisked it in an taste it. ITwas way to sweet but interesting I got my funnel out and
dumped the remainder into the just opened 16 oz swingtop. Shook it up and tasted again with much better result. I think Bells is using clover(cost also drives that). I have a IPA in primary, when I rack to secondary I'm going to pull 1 gallon and add 1/4 honey to that gallon and give it 2 weeks to a month to bottle both. At which time I'm going to pull another gallon off which will use honey as the primer, the remainder of the fiver and the honey added gallon will be primed normally. 2 more weeks to bottle condition. Than Ill have my initial result for my clone of hopslam. Since Bells is using 1087 as OG that means their FG is 1020, Only 1056m yeast is normally used for an IPA that is because of the alcohol tolerance which can easily handle 10%. Thanks for your reply
 

Sleepyemt

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So I've been searching all over as well and have copy and pasted a few notes that seem legit ....

Response from Bell's:

We don’t have any specific recipes scaled to the homebrew size, but I can offer a bit of guidance. The malt bill is relatively straightforward: stick with 2-row base malt and just a bit of caramel malts for color. Add a healthy dollop of honey. Aim for an OG of 21 Plato. You’ll want to set up your mash rests for moderate fermentability: the sugars from the honey will be largely consumed, so you need malt dextrins around to keep the beer from getting too dry.

Hopping is trickier, but I can tell you that we use a blend of modern American high-alpha aroma hops. A generous dry hop addition of Simcoe with a touch of Amarillo provides the signature aromatic punch. Bitterness is less than most people think, in the mid-to-upper 60 IBU range. Hopslam is all about hop flavor, not unrestrained bitterness.

You can culture yeast out of one of our bottles if you’re comfortable with that; it’s certainly the preferred option for a solid flavor match. The yeast in the Hopslam bottle is the yeast used for fermentation, but at 10% abv, the yeast that isn’t dead will be severely stressed. I would recommend culturing from a lower gravity beer such as Amber Ale, Best Brown Ale, etc.: the yeast is the same & likely to be in superior condition. Winter White Ale is a completely different strain, so don’t use that. Otherwise, the local homebrew supply shops have found that most people looking to clone one of our recipes lean towards the WLP001 strain from White Labs. From what I’ve seen of it, that seems like a reasonable selection, but anything with a straightforward ester profile & good attenuation will work.

I hope this answers your questions. Good luck with the brewing!

Sincerely,

Gary S. Nicholas

Quality Assurance & Control

Bell's Brewery, Inc.

Per Bells: We use Hersbrucker, Centennial, Glacier, Vanguard, & Crystal in the kettle, and then dry hop with Simcoe. Hopslam has an unusually high degree of fermentation, so you also encounter a fermentation profile that you wouldn’t find in many of our other beers. Lets figure out a clone recipe for this one now that we have the type of hops. I have no experience with Glacier, Vanguard, or Crystal so I will not be of any assistance. Here is one more hint Our internal taste panels regularly identify a peach aroma that is unique among our brands to Hopslam. That, in concert with the various hops, may be the tropical flavor you asked about.


So with that said, here's what I put together, I haven't brewed it yet, waiting on some hops recently ordered and I need to pick up some honey .... I'd figure as well that you'd need to pitch a huge starter ....

BeerSmith Recipe Printout - http://www.beersmith.com
Recipe: IIPA (HOPSLAM?)
Brewer: Jonathan
Asst Brewer:
Style: Imperial IPA
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 6.00 gal
Boil Size: 8.08 gal
Estimated OG: 1.085 SG
Estimated Color: 5.6 SRM
Estimated IBU: 72.4 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.00 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
14 lbs 8.0 oz Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 80.56 %
1 lbs Caramel/Crystal Malt - 10L (10.0 SRM) Grain 5.56 %
3.00 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] (Dry Hop 3 days) Hops -
1.00 oz Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] (Dry Hop 3 days) Hops -
1.00 oz Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] (40 min) Hops 20.2 IBU
1.00 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] (40 min) Hops 30.9 IBU
0.50 oz Glacier [5.60 %] (20 min) Hops 4.6 IBU
1.00 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (20 min) Hops 9.0 IBU
0.50 oz Vanguard [5.50 %] (15 min) Hops 3.7 IBU
1.00 oz Glacier [5.60 %] (1 min) Hops 0.7 IBU
1.00 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (1 min) Hops 0.6 IBU
1.00 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] (1 min) Hops 1.5 IBU
1.00 oz Centennial [10.00 %] (1 min) Hops 1.2 IBU
2 lbs 8.0 oz Honey (1.0 SRM) Sugar 13.89 %
1 Pkgs California Ale (White Labs #WLP001) Yeast-Ale


Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, No Mash Out
Total Grain Weight: 15.50 lb
----------------------------
Single Infusion, Medium Body, No Mash Out
Step Time Name Description Step Temp
60 min Mash In Add 19.38 qt of water at 170.1 F 154.0 F




Anyone with more experience please speak up as I'm looking for some info as well ....:mug:

Edit: I just noticed I posted some of the same as others with my copy and paste, and I'm not 100% sure about the Crystal 10, or maybe add some carapils? The SG looks about right, the I'd aim for FG of 1.012, IBU's are close, maybe decrease slightly?
 

hopvine

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... Since Bells is using 1087 as OG that means their FG is 1020, Only 1056m yeast is normally used for an IPA that is because of the alcohol tolerance which can easily handle 10%. Thanks for your reply
Given that their O.G. is listed at 1.087, their F.G. is actually in the neighborhood of 1.011 in order to achieve 10% ABV. That crazy attenuation is made possible by two things. 1) Bell's uses a proprietary strain of yeast that is known to be extremely attenuative, and 2) a percentage of the sugars come from honey, which is extremely fermentable.
 

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Yes, they were adamant about the use of honey to dry the beer out. If you use Fermentis US-05 you will be able to dry this beer out, especially if you use the nice "dollop" of honey they reffered to in the letter I posted. It finishes "under 3 Plato"
 

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So I've been searching all over as well and have copy and pasted a few notes that seem legit ....
My initial thoughts are not to bother with a Cascade bittering/flavor addition... seems like it would get totally lost in this beer, and I don't remember tasting much citrus in Hopslam. It seemed cleaner than that... if Cascade is used at all, I would make it aroma only. Also, something strikes me as strange about a full ounce of Centennial at flameout... but eh. :) I LOVE the idea of the Simcoe/Amarillo dry hop, seems like a great combination... I would beef up the middle addition somehow though.

The malt bill looks like about what I was thinking, although having seen it in the glass, I would be tempted to bump it to 20, or maybe even half and half with 40. A bit of carapils wouldn't hurt, but with all that malt, I don't think foam's going to be a problem. I think I'm going to try a half-batch of this type of thing very soon....
 

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My initial thoughts are not to bother with a Cascade bittering/flavor addition...
So I pulled out another bottle of Bells for tasting and played with the recipe a little more, here's the second version, no cascade, bumped up the grain bill to figure that my efficiency would be lower. I also made the first addition of simcoe/amarillo as a later addition and bumped up the quantity ... still trying to keep the IBU's at their upper 60's (69 for this one) ...
any thoughts?

Recipe: IIPA (HOPSLAM?)
Brewer: Jonathan
Asst Brewer:
Style: Imperial IPA
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (35.0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 6.00 gal
Boil Size: 8.08 gal
Estimated OG: 1.086 SG
Estimated Color: 6.8 SRM
Estimated IBU: 69.7 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 70.00 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
16 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 82.05 %
1 lbs Caramel/Crystal Malt - 20L (20.0 SRM) Grain 5.13 %
1.50 oz Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] (20 min) Hops 20.7 IBU
1.50 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] (20 min) Hops 31.6 IBU
1.00 oz Vanguard [5.50 %] (15 min) Hops 7.3 IBU
1.00 oz Glacier [5.60 %] (15 min) Hops 7.4 IBU
0.50 oz Centennial [10.00 %] (1 min) Hops 0.6 IBU
1.00 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] (1 min) Hops 1.5 IBU
1.00 oz Glacier [5.60 %] (1 min) Hops 0.6 IBU
2.50 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] (Dry Hop 3 days) Hops -
1.50 oz Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] (Dry Hop 3 days) Hops -
2 lbs 8.0 oz Honey (1.0 SRM) Sugar 12.82 %
1 Pkgs California Ale (White Labs #WLP001) Yeast-Ale


Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, No Mash Out
Total Grain Weight: 17.00 lb
 

KyleWolf

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Here is a HopSlam Clone I pulled from Brew365.

All Grain Recipe - Bells Hopslam ::: 1.089/1.020 (6.5 Gal)
Grain Bill (75% Efficiency assumed)

13 lbs. - Maris Otter Malt
2 lb. - Munich Malt
1 lb. - Aromatic Malt
1/2 lb. - CaraPils
3 lbs. - Table Sugar *OR* 4 lbs. - Honey (end of boil)
Hop Schedule (93 IBU)

2 oz. - Simcoe [13%] (75 min.)
1 oz. - Glacier [5.6%] (60 min.)
1.5 oz. - Centennial [10%] (20 min.)
1 oz. - Glacier [5.6%] (15 min.)
1 oz. - Vanguard [5.5%](10 min.)
1 oz. - Crystal [3.5%] (1 min.)
1 oz. - Hallertau [4%] (1 min.)
2 oz. - Simcoe (Dry Hop in Secondary 1 week)
Yeast

1.3L starter of WLP001 or WY1056 IF you have a stirplate.
If you do not have a striplate, make a pale ale or something below 1.050
with WLP001 or 1056 and use 200 ml of that yeast for this beer.
If you choose Safale S-05 use 2 properly hydrated packs.
Mash/Sparge/Boil

Mash at 150° to 152° for 75 min.
Sparge as usual
Cool and ferment at 68° (make sure you control your temp!)
 

MrInternet

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So I pulled out another bottle of Bells for tasting and played with the recipe a little more, here's the second version, no cascade, bumped up the grain bill to figure that my efficiency would be lower. I also made the first addition of simcoe/amarillo as a later addition and bumped up the quantity ... still trying to keep the IBU's at their upper 60's (69 for this one) ...
any thoughts?
That looks a lot closer to how I remember the profile tasting... :) I love my Cascades, but if they put it in this beer, they hid it impeccably well, I can't find it. :)

Your schedule seems a lot closer now to the clone posted immediately after... although there's probably 400,000 ways to combine five different hops in reasonable amounts in a standard boil. I say go for it. :)
 

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Being the noob that I am, I have a sorta off-topic question:

The letter from Bells said to harvest yeast from another Bells beer, but how does one go about harvesting yeast from a commercial brew? I can envision a way to do it from a bottle conditioned beer, but have no idea how you would do it from anything else.

Z.
 

Sleepyemt

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Your schedule seems a lot closer now to the clone posted immediately after... although there's probably 400,000 ways to combine five different hops in reasonable amounts in a standard boil. I say go for it. :)
I saw that clone in my searching, the grain bill didn't seem as simple as the info I saw from Bell's, also plugging in that hop schedule into beersmith put me @118 IBU's or the max of 100 that you can actually get into a beer ... I also tried to stick to some guidelines that Vinnie C. (russian river) wrote about keeping the the sugar or honey to around 10%

I really think it is all about the hopbursting (late additions)

I'll be going for it here soon, just waiting on some hops recently ordered and I'll try to report back ... I do appreciate the feedback, anyone else please speak up!
 

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Willie3

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Although I cannot disagree with you on that hop schedule. I love it, however, the questions beg;

Why use Simcoe as a Kettle addition if Bells states that they use Simcoe strictly for Dry hopping?

and

Wy not use Hersbrucker as they suggest they do for this beer?

WW
 

Duster72

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The new batch of Hopslam tastes like a huge hopburst of Amarillo and Simcoe to me. I have never used Glacier or Vangard before, but I think your recipe looks pretty good.
 

Fletch78

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I had it once, pretty recently. I remember an aggressive grapefruit flavor. My former pro-beer brewer friend insists it is pineapple, he says he "knows someone".

I think it's weird there is little mention of this profile in this thread. Perhaps it's the yeast, like a hefe can be like banana, obnoxiously.

I'm not a hop expert, is Simcoe or one of those other hops known for a citrus note?

FWIW: I found this thread searching on how to clone this beer, it is very good. I hate hops but I love this beer.

:)
 
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