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Pliny the Middle Child

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Matt Up North

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Recipe Type
All Grain
Yeast
US-05
Yeast Starter
no
Additional Yeast or Yeast Starter
no
Batch Size (Gallons)
11
Original Gravity
1.078
Final Gravity
1.020
Boiling Time (Minutes)
90
IBU
50
Color
12
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp)
14
Tasting Notes
Malty, Hoppy Aroma, Perfect Bitterness
So I set about to make an IPA that was hoppy enough for my friends and balanced enough for me. I like both of the Pliny IPA's by Russian River. I love their Younger when it comes out, but didn't follow either recipe at all (I don't know of one that really exists to match the taste precisely), so really this isn't a Pliny at all. It is the closest thing to their style that I have ever tasted though (since they are just down the street :) ). Really, I would call this a poor mans Pliny at around $50 for 5 Gallons, rather than the $100+ I see elsewhere.

I used a total of 10.5oz of hops (for 10gal) and think that I could get that down a smidgen more in order to keep the hops at less than $50. I also might see adding (for those of you that like to) about another two oz of Cascade at flameout or hopback for even more hop aroma. I don't really like my IPA overly bitter, so I set about creating enough bitterness to let you know it was an IPA, but really have all of the Hops go into the Aroma production.

After posting how this beer made a tear come to my eye and getting some responses, I decided to post the recipe official. Let me know what you think. Lastly is that the IBU's don't take the DH into consideration. So I have been told by a brewer friend that he counts the DH addition somehow and that is why I am only putting this guy at 50 IBU. Trust me though, there is enough bitter in this guy for even the most staunch IPA HopHead.

OG 1.070 / FG 1.020 / IBU 50 / SRM 12

11 Gallon Batch
13 Gallon Boil
Used the fan technique to help with boil off

Malts

22 lbs Golden Promise (British Two Row)
4 lbs Victory
1 lb Rye
1 lb Crystal 60L

Hops

2oz Chinook 11.8%AA (60 min)
1oz Cascade 5.7%AA (60 min)
3oz Cascade 5.7%AA (5 min)
1oz Irish Moss (15 min)

2oz Cascade 5.7%AA (Dry Hopped after 5 Days for 7 Days)
2.5oz Centennial 9.7%AA (Dry Hopped after 5 days for 7 days)

EDIT: Should you want to, you can up the base IBU's to closer to 60, however this amount of dry hopping really makes the beer be both malty and super aromatically hop driven. Also, you can always attempt to get 1.075 by adding two more lbs of base malt.


Mashed at 157 for an hour, sparged with 167* water, boiled 90 min, pitched at 78* with two packets of US-05.

Fermented at 63* for five days, added pellets directly into the primary fermenter and swirled gently to get them wet. Fermented another 10 Days and then racked into keg.


This beer is so freaking good. There is no other way to put it. Everyone that I tasted on this was a happy camper and had another pint. Even SWMBO liked it and she doesn't like IPA at all. It is a beast with Hop aroma and just flies out of the glass even before you see it. When you taste it, there is a nice malty/bitter balance that plays well off itself. Just watch out, I got 1.078 at 7.5% this is an easy beer to drink too many of :)



3/24/09 - I just brewed up a second version of this using only Chinook in the bittering to 50 IBU and no Cascade at 5min. Mashed at 153 and it came out at just 1.080, I will dry hop on the 29th with Chinook, Centennial and Cascade. I tweaked the malts a bit to get it a little lighter at 9 SRM instead of 12. Going to aim for lighter still next time, perhaps with some Crystal 20L instead of the 40L I used for v.2. I will keep you informed on v.2

3/29/09 - Dry hopped v.2 with half ounce of Chinook, half ounce of Centennial and an ounce of Cascade. It attenuated lower than v.1 and has a more balanced perception prior to the dry hopping. I think that it might end up a little thinner, but that can be fixed with a touch more rye or flaked something.

4/3/09 - v.2 is kegged. It is really nice and piney, crisp and well attenuated. Came in at...8.9% abv with FG 1.013 :mug: Will let you know when carbonated.
 

Dubcut

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Thanks man, I put it in my beer tools to try sometime soon. Good luck on the second batch, I'll be interested to see how it goes.
 
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Matt Up North

Matt Up North

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I just did up a growler of this boy for myself and drank the entire thing last night! Woke up this morning with hop breath. Yeesh. I feel great and didn't get too bad last night even though after 64 oz, you are there.
 
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Matt Up North

Matt Up North

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So I just updated what happened with version two and man is it slick. I just can't explain how much I love me some US-05. That is the **** yeast that every beer needs to be made with.

Two things about v.2. First off is that I mashed lower which brought the attenuation to an out of this world number, 85%. Next is that as mentioned, the alcohol is at 8.9% and a beast. The dry hopping worked well and I think that once carbonated this version will be the right flavor, though needs some flaked barley or flaked oats into it, in order to smooth out the mouthfeel a bit. That or just mash a little higher to keep the FG around 1.016.



After tasting it I realize that it is a little bit too dry (hops, attenuation, alcohol). This is green now though, so it will be nice a month down the road. It isn't however as accurate an example of a plinyesque clone. Good IPA, bad Pliny. So I will mash a little higher next time to keep the attenuation lower and a nice malty beer.
 
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Matt Up North

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Last Otter IPA - because it is a fine IPA, just not Pliny the Middle Child v.2


5.5 gallon batch, kegged 4.5 gallons
OG 1.080 / FG 1.013 / SRM 9 / IBU 50 / ABV 8.87%

11.75 lbs Maris Otter - 78%
2 lbs Victory - 13%
.5 lb Red Wheat - 3%
.5 lb Crystal 40L - 3%
.25 lb Crystal 60L - 2%

1.5oz Chinook @ 60min
.5oz Chinook DH on day 5 for 5 days
.5oz Centennial DH on day 5 for 5 days
1 oz Cascade DH on day 5 for 5 days

Irish Moss
1 packet US-05 Yeast

75 minute mash @ 153*, 60 minute boil, fermented at 61* for 10 days and then into the keg to begin conditioning.


I was going to leave it for 14 days, but I brewed on a strange schedule and would not have been able to get to it until day 17 or something and I didn't want the dry hopping to go too long. It is clean and delicious. More bite, less malt, strong hop acid and perfect for the IPA fans.

Meanwhile, at the legion of doom...

I will keep trying, as you notice it has less color than the first, which is a step in the right direction of Pliny the Younger. The thing is, I am trying to get to light color with the balanced malty. So I think using Crystal 20L at a pound, crystal 40L at .5lb and putting the rye back in (light and malty) should really help it out. The hopping has to have more than just a bittering addition. I am thinking of the cascade hopback or at the last 5 minutes will really help with a citrusy kind of bitter. Nix the chinook dry hopping. It just adds a dark hop flavor and I am really looking for a very aromatic hop more than a pungent aroma.

And there you have, version two.
 

snailsongs

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This IS a dumb question, but I feel compelled to ask for some reason. If I sub Maris Otter for the Golden Promise, will that drastically change this IPA?....the first recipe, BTW. it looks like my kind of IPA. also, flaked rye, rye malt, or does it matter?
 
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Matt Up North

Matt Up North

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Two answers for your two questions.

1. Maris Otter and Golden Promise are english, but different. Drastically changed, no. Different, yes.

2. Flaked rye to me has a spicy flavor, more so than Malted Rye. I went with Malted Rye in the Pliny recipe because it really adds a nice malty tone that I like a lot, so go with the malted rye in order to see the original recipe through.

v.2 is a different beast all the way. I like it as a beer, but it is so different and very crisp and citrusy. The Middle Child is so much more like Pliny that I can't even explain it.
 

snailsongs

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Two answers for your two questions.

1. Maris Otter and Golden Promise are english, but different. Drastically change, no. Different, yes.

2. Flaked rye to me has a spicy flavor, more so than Malted Rye. I went with Malted Rye in the Pliny recipe because it really adds a nice malty tone that I like a lot, so go with the malted rye in order to see the original recipe through.

v.2 is a different beast all the way. I like it as a beer, but it is so different and very crisp and citrusy. The Middle Child is so much more like Pliny that I can't even explain it.
Thanks, Matt. I just ordered the stuff I needed for this, including Golden Promise.....I've been wanting to try it out anyway, despite my large sack of MO. I'm going to be faithful to your recipe and process.....you sure about 157F? seems high to me for the style, but I'm taking your word for it ( it's probably why it's so good, right?;)) Oh, and is there a benefit or reason for pitching at 78 and then dropping to 63? I usually chill my brews to fermentation temps before pitching. thanks again, I'm stoked about doing this - It'll be my first IPA!
 
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Matt Up North

Matt Up North

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Here is what happened. I mashed in around 156-157 and it really held at that temp. I was aiming for 155. Honestly, with US-05, it got to 1.020 because of a well maintained fermentation and temperature. Had I used a different yeast, I would never in a million years have mashed that high. If you are not able to maintain your temperature through mashing or fermentation, then mash it a little lower in order to get enough attenuation. If this goes to as low as 1.016 that is alright. You just want to keep a higher FG, between 1.016 and 1.020. Less than that and you will get too dry and not malty enough of a beer.

I like to pitch a little warmer to make sure that my yeast gets a good start and there is a little less lag time. In my setup it will get down to around sixty over the course of the night and then ferments close to 63*. No worries on keeping it warm, because US-05 is a beast.

Lastly, when I mashed v.2 IPA at 154 for 75 minutes it attenuated a lot, so make sure to get at least 155 if not even 156 for 60 minutes.

Good luck and post when you make this
 

snailsongs

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OK, it's in the can.....I did it up the minute my order came, just because I could and I needed to get my brewing fix before my long work-weekend. My efficiency has been suffering due to sparge problems lately, and this batch was no exception, I think I only got about 60-62% efficiency, and 1.068-69 gravity, but I think it should still turn out darn good, if not exactly the same. I'm going to give it an extra week or three in the fermentor or secondary it, since I'm bottling and I need it to clear up before racking, but I'll post up how it turned out. thanks for the recipe.
 
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Matt Up North

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Sounds great. Don't worry about efficiency problems. I over boiled and got 1.078 on my batch. Be sure that if you are going to leave it the extra time to push the dry hopping out longer. In other words, if you are going to keep this in the fermentor for 4 weeks then DH on week 3 instead of week 2. You want that fresh hop flavor to just leap from the glass when you pour it.
 

snailsongs

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Matt, I was thinking about double dry-hopping. say, doing it once at week two (in a hop bag) and then again at week three. I have 6 ounces of cascade and 2 ounces of centennial sitting here, as well as some summit (another nice citrusy hop). I love a balanced IPA full of resiny hop goodness.....what do you think about a double dry hop?
 
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Matt Up North

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I think that it would change a bit of the character. Instead, just chuck it all in. I really wanted the aroma to come out of the glass for the "clone" here as that is what Pliny does. It just throws hop aroma at you from across the room.

If you want resiny, then go for version two dry hopping schedule with the Chinook addition. It is absolutely killing me with resin and citrus.

The real key that I have figured out is that Pliny is Malty with hop aroma. So make your beer malty and give it as much hop aroma as possible. It doesn't kill your mouth with bitter, resin or anything else. Also it isn't as dry as most other IPA's. It's not like DFH 90 or 120 where it is sweet and syrupy. Instead it is a very dry Barleywine that is not overly bitter with the hop addition. That is what I was striving for when I made this IPA. Aromatic hops...
 

snailsongs

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So far, I'm impressed! I just took a hydro sample (day 8 today) as it had stopped bubbling for a couple days and then picked back up to a bubble or two a minute....I got curious. The flavor is awesome already, and it is already pretty clean for only 8 days old....I may be bottling sooner than anticipated. It's sitting right at 1.020 and it likely will stay there (or drop a point or two, which will be fine), but it's nice and malty with a strong "C" hop flavor and the dry-hop should kick it up to great heights. I've never had a "pliny" yet but we're moving to Oregon this year so maybe I'll find some out there. anyhow, I'm giving this my preliminary seal of awesomeness.
 
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Matt Up North

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Take a picture of it!

When i tasted my hydro sample I was dismayed. I was like, "Where the hell is the hops, this is all malt, Son of a Bitch!" Then I dry hopped it and holy shiznit was it the most awesome IPA.

Glad to hear that you are on the way for delicious beer. :mug:

PS...did you do a 10 gallon batch?
 

snailsongs

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maybe it's because I was expecting the maltiness when I tasted it. I think I'm with you on IPA's. I like them as malty beers with mad amounts of hop flavor and aroma. The IPA's I don't like so much are the ones that are just wicked bitter hop vehicles with little to no malt presence. they need to be balanced, IMO.

No, I wish I could do 10 gallon batches, but I'm still hacking it out on a turkey fryer and a 7.5 gallon boilover vessel.
 
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Matt Up North

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When the beer turns out and you can taste it proper, post up the recipe used since I posted a 10 gallon recipe.
 

snailsongs

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Here you go, I'll just post it up.

There is a bar in the town over from mine called Nutz Deep II, and I scratch my head every time I pass it and wonder what that name is all about (and where or what became of Nutz Deep I).....hence my 'name' in beersmith......take it or leave it.

Oh, and I added 2 lbs of maris otter because I only had 10lbs of Golden Promise. using all GP would be nearly the same, enit?

Nutz Deep I(n)-P(liny)-A(le)

Type: All Grain
Batch Size: 5.25 gal
Boil Size: 6.25

Ingredients

Amount Item Type % or IBU
10.00 lb Pale Malt, Golden Promise (2 Row) UK (3.0 SRM) Grain 64.5 %
2.00 lb Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 12.9 %
2.00 lb Victory Malt (25.0 SRM) Grain 12.9 %
1.00 lb Rye, Flaked (2.0 SRM) Grain 6.5 %
0.50 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L (60.0 SRM) Grain 3.2 %
1.00 oz Chinook [11.50%] (60 min) Hops 36.8 IBU
0.50 oz Cascade [7.10%] (60 min) Hops 11.4 IBU
1.50 oz Cascade [7.10%] (5 min) Hops 6.8 IBU
1.00 oz Cascade [7.10%] (Dry Hop 7 days) Hops -
1.25 oz Centennial [10.00%] (Dry Hop 7 days) Hops -
2 Pkgs Safale american ale (DCL Yeast #S-05) Yeast-Ale

Est Original Gravity: 1.067 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.019 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 6.2 %
Bitterness: 54.9 IBU
Est Color: 13.0 SRM
 

snailsongs

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So, (got your PM, Matt) It's been bottled for 4 days now, and I tried one yesterday from a sixer I put near a heat source to carb up faster....it's already shaping up to be a great beer! I can tell that once it's done conditioning it's going to be superb. My SRM'age ended up somewhere in between the two pics you have on the thread (for v1 and v2). Last night, just for kicks, I sat and contemplated this one alongside Black Lab's Orange/Cascade pale recipe (another winner). Both are great and now, with an Amarillo Amber in the fermentor as of this morning, I will have a full arsenal of american Ales to drink over the next few months.

I think it's a myth that dry-hopping does not add bitterness to beer. It really did a dance to this brew; took it from an awesomely delicious barleywine-ish beer to an awesomely hopped IPA.....
 

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This came out excellently for me. I used Northern Brewer for bittering and Cascade for aroma addition and dry hopping, and used US-05 for yeast (added 2 packets directly to the full 1/2 bbl sankey fermenter.)

OG = 1.064 and FG = 1.012, so it came out nice and dry but still had good malt flavor that imparted a sweetness that was only very slightly and nicely balanced by the small amount of rye this recipe calls for... It is very clear and has a superb copper color. I am going to modify this slightly to achieve a slightly lighter summer ale with lemon zest, and then am going to use the original recipe again (only with NB hops again) but with US-04 to see the difference.

This beer would be an outstanding beer to always have on tap.
 

snailsongs

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How is it tasting now? Picture
Matt, this is really good. For me, it is just hitting it's stride now (been bottled 3-4 weeks or so). The elements of delicious were there in the beginning, but there was a roughness to it, especially from the dry-hop I think....I don't know if I got funky cascades or if whole leaf hops would do better in this application......now this beer is smooth, the roughness and unpleasant bite of the hops is rounded off and in check while still retaining tons of hop flavor.....in short, it's delicious. I just cracked one to sample and ended up chugging the last half of the pint because it was so drinkable and I was thirsty. Good IPA for those of us that like a bigger malt thing with our hoppiness.

I had an IPA at the great dane brew pub here in town yesterday that was like a thin, watery version of this one.....just as bitter but no shine to it. This one has developed a shine. :mug:
 
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Matt Up North

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Great to hear that it worked well for you guys. I am thinking it is about time to put this one on again, though I just made up an IPA. What to do, what to do :)
 

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Matt, thanks again for the original recipe. My changes were slightly larger batch volume, 3.5 oz No.Brewer at 60 min and 3 oz Cascade at 5 min, 3 oz of Cascade after 5 days (dry-hopped,) plus US-05. ABV was 6.95% - less than the original recipe, but along with the dryer finish it is pretty drinkable and possible to have a couple or three.

Last Sunday, I made it again, twice! Once the same way as above. And a second time with a pound less of the Victory malt, replacement of half the pale malt with pilsen, 6 oz of lemon zest, and US-04. Both keg fermenters have been blowing off strongly for a couple of days and are only now slowing down. The latter was meant to try to create a slightly summerized version of this brew.

Thanks again Matt!
 
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Matt Up North

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Cheers! I like the victory flavor in the IPA and love the flavor of Cascade and Centennial dry hopped together. If you go back and read the version two recipe, I think that it is more IPA styled for those super bitter lovers (the Chinook dry hopping), but to me the original recipe stands taller. I also like its simplicity of both grains and hops.
 

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Doing this up as we speak. I couldn't get any Golden Promise...so I have to go with normal two row... I hope it will still turn out favorable!
 
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Matt Up North

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If you are using American, it will come out just fine because of the mash temp. It will just a be a touch lighter in the color. I am about to brew this again, though I just brewed up my
<------Easy Imperial IPA, which means that I have some IIPA already on tap!

Let me know when you brew this khuygie88 and take a picture if you can. They tell a hundred words like x10. :mug:
 

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Once I have it tapped I will take a picture for sure. I'm excited for this, IPAs and IIPAs are the best!

I only hit 153-154 for my mash temperature, so I'm guessing it will come out a little more dry than I want. Today I had a revelation in terms of solving my problem of never knowing my pre-boil volume. I used my bottling bucket (the True Brew kit one) and used the lines on it. 4 gallons of first runnings at 1.117, and double batch sparge with 5 gallons at 1.059 and 4 gallons more at 1.0xx which made my cumulative pre-boil 13 gallons at 1.067. Now if everyone already does this, I'm an idiot. But if not, it works well. Since the hot wort never sits in the bucket for longer than probably 5-10 min I'm not worried about plastic nastys hurting my wort...

And I LOVE my refractometer... probably my 5th batch w/ it this summer and I am now in the habit of taking readings and jotting them down quick like (doesnt take more than 20 seconds anyways)

Thanks for the recipe Matt!
 
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Matt Up North

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Glad people are liking this. The higher mash temp is akin to Lagunitas IPA where it gets a very solid malty backbone, but it is also higher in alcohol. I really enjoy how "soft" it is for being so big and bold. Delicious for sure! So much response, I just moved this up to the top of my list of things to brew again! Just did up a lighter summer beer, then maybe a quick pale ale to fill the void, and then this guy again just in time for harvest...woo hoo!
 
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Matt Up North

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I just bought the ingredients to do this fellow up again. Maybe I will throw it together while I do my Barleywine this Friday. Busy brewday. Start early morning with this and then onto the Barleywine for a long ass day full of debauchery. I will try to take some pictures along the day, though I need to have a smaller glass than my last brewday :eek::cross:

I am going to go with Columbus at 60min as I have that on hand and the rest will be the same

Hey Baja Brewer, how did yours turn out in the end? Did it dry out too much for it or did it retain the malty profile?
 

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I just bought the ingredients to do this fellow up again. Maybe I will throw it together while I do my Barleywine this Friday. Busy brewday. Start early morning with this and then onto the Barleywine for a long ass day full of debauchery. I will try to take some pictures along the day, though I need to have a smaller glass than my last brewday :eek::cross:

I am going to go with Columbus at 60min as I have that on hand and the rest will be the same

Hey Baja Brewer, how did yours turn out in the end? Did it dry out too much for it or did it retain the malty profile?
Yah! Go for it!

Mine turned out really well actually, not as dry as I was worried about... I should really get a few different thermometers and compare them, but was slightly malty and very drinkable. I think I have a keg left of this at home (did a 10 gallon batch) but I'm not sure. I need to get a minifridge and throw together another kegerator for myself so I can tap it!

What recipe are you using for a barleywine? I have a very long "to brew" list at this point, and a barleywine is right up there with my double chocolate stout, need to get those suckers aging! I'm going to be picking up a 55# bag of light DME and I think I'll be using that to up my gravity when it comes barleywine time.... I've been stuck in my apartment for the past few months and havent been able to brew :(
 
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Matt Up North

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I am thinking of just throwing some malts together and making a really high alcohol beer. Probably like 30lbs two row, a little six row, some chocolate, some wheat and some crystal. Maybe even some victory, munich or vienna for a little something different. Aiming for at least 1.100.

You better get on that IPA otherwise you are going to lose all of the hop aromatics.
 

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This recipe looks interesting. I should point out that RR makes a great IPA, sold only on tap, that is like a Pliny light, much less harsh than Blind Pig. Perhaps this is closer to that?
 
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Matt Up North

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Negative there Ghost Rider. They have the Russian River IPA which is still a pretty hearty IPA. Then coming up in a month is the Pliny the Younger, which is a 10% IIPA that is really tasty. This Pliny the Middle child is a bit more body than Pliny the Elder because of the higher mash temp and higher final gravity. However, I really find Pliny the Elder to have a bit crisper hop flavor most likely due to the extracts that they are using and the lower FG. I get a bit more of a leafy hop flavor (like the flavor of cooked herbs, where you taste the actual leaf and not just the high flavors) in this IPA since it uses hops and not the oils only.
 

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However, I really find Pliny the Elder to have a bit crisper hop flavor most likely due to the extracts that they are using and the lower FG. I get a bit more of a leafy hop flavor (like the flavor of cooked herbs, where you taste the actual leaf and not just the high flavors) in this IPA since it uses hops and not the oils only.
But the extracts are acids, only for bittering, per Vinnie. Flavor comes from the oils. Does this make sense with what you are saying?

I'm not sure what evil magic Vinnie is doing to dry hop in such amounts without getting gassy notes. I'd sure like to follow him around for a day though, PtY in hand. :cross:
 
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Matt Up North

Matt Up North

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Yeah, that is what I am saying. You get all of the high notes and acids when using the extracts. When using the hops you can taste the character of the hop leaf/pellet, which is a different kind of flavor. In the end though, this still is a little higher FG and so is technically a different beer in many many ways. I really wanted a highly hopped beer that was absolutely screaming hops in its aroma in the way that Pliny the Elder does. I was quite happy with how this turned out in that manor.
 
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Vinnie is always willing to talk to us homebrewers and answer questions. One time we sat down and he talked the whole process of Pliny from start to finish. From what I remember he uses 2 row and Carapils with very light crystal 15L and quite a bit of sugar. He prefers to mash low as he likes it to dry out. CZT hops are a must. He also dry hops warm and cold because they contribute different flavors at different temps.:)
 
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