IPA Hop Sched - Citra, Centennial, Cascade

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devicex

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Hello all, I'm making my first attempt at brewing an IPA and I'm in need of a bit of advice. I have some Citra, Centennial, and Cascade to experiment with although I am uncertain as to how to put them together so that they play nice. I was hoping for a tropical feel in this one with a decent amount of bitterness. I also have 9 lbs of LME to work with. I understand that Citra has the potential to blow the other two out of the water. I'd like to avoid that. Thanks for your input!
 

NedStackey

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These are all great ups for your IPA. How much are you planning on using, or how much do you have of the 3? I would use the Cascade and Centennial as your bittering hops so throw them in at the beginning of your boil, then use the Citra at flame out and dry hop with them since the aroma is really what you're after. What's the recipe look like that you are going to go with?
 
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devicex

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I have 3 oz of the Centennial and Cascade. 2 oz of the Citra. Not only is this my first IPA it's also my first attempt at developing a recipe. I have 3# of NB superstructure LME, and 6# of gold LME. I also have some caramel 40 for steeping as well as carapils although there seems some debate on it's necessity. Safale US-05 yeast. It's an experiment that I hope proves tasty.
 

agrazela

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After looking up those extracts, I'd say steeping grains are entirely at your option. If you do decide to steep some C40L, use not more than 0.25-0.5 lb. Assuming a 5 gallon batch, you're going to be 1.065-1.067 or so OG

Keeping the Citra to a quarter or less of your total hop bill should tame it somewhat. I assume you meant 3oz EACH of Centennial and Cascade?

I'd say you could go:
1oz Centennial at 60 min
1oz each of Centennial, Citra and Cascade at 5 min to flameout
1oz each of Centennial and Citra and 2oz Cascade for dry hop

Should put you about 45 IBU or so.

Or better yet, go get 1oz of some fairly neutral high alpha bittering hop (Magnum, Warrior, etc.) and do:
1oz Magnum or Warrior at 60 min
1oz each of Citra and Cascade and 2oz Centennial at 5 min to flameout
1oz each of Centennial and Citra and 2oz Cascade for dry hop

Should put you about 60 IBU or so (what I'd call a "decent" amount of bitterness) and have better hop flavor (more at flameout).

What's your water look like?
 
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devicex

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I'm not entirely sure what to look for in the water report but it is at this link http://www.scbwa.org/pdf/state_college_wqr_2013.pdf. I was considering a higher alpha hop to bitter with as well... but I'd like to brew this weekend and I wont have a chance to get anything here. Is there any reason you prefer the 60 min/5 min additions as you stated in your post? Thanks you all for your input.
 

agrazela

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That water report doesn't say anything about sulfate, chloride, calcium, sodium levels, I wonder if you could call the number on it and get more detail? I ask about this because my IPA's jumped up a big notch once I started going to high sulfate levels (like 300ppm) primarily from gypsum (calcium sulfate) additions, and keeping chloride levels low (like 50ppm). But then I start from distilled and build it with salts. I don't know how far you want to go down the water chemistry rabbit hole at this point!

The 60 min addition gives the bulk of the bittering, so IMO might as well use a cheap, neutral-flavored high alpha hop for that.
Massive 5 min or so additions (and in reality, I'd add them at flameout, or even more likely after some wort cooling like around 140°F) is where the real hop flavor comes from. What kind of wort cooling capability do you have?
Then the dry-hop gives the big aroma.

I don't bother with all the 30 / 20 /15 / 10 minute hop additions these days, in my experience any hops boiled more than about 5 min loses too much flavor / aroma punch.

Maybe a 45 IBU bitterness level will suit you fine, what are some commercial IPA's you like?
 
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devicex

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I'm sure I'll head down the water quality rabbit hole soon enough but lets save that till next time :) I'll call and check though and thanks for the suggestion.
I'm a big DIPA fan, so I like them bitter. Enjoying Sierra Nevada Hoptimum and Founders Double Trouble right now. I'm looking to make something more mellow though. 45 IBU sounds a bit on the low side, perhaps I will just wait it out and purchase something strictly for bittering. As for wort cooling I've been using a homemade copper immersion chiller. It has been doing a good job.
 
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