suggestions for my first IPA

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fredthecat

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Hello, my first beer is turning out just fine now that it has aged enough, my friends find it quite drinkable! But I've been itching to make a second batch so badly, and I think I will try to make an IPA from a brewhouse kit (pale ale kit) recipe on their page

http://www.thebrewhouse.com/resource_center/the_inner.htm#India


I know i'm failing to follow some advice in the "Stone Cold Lead Pipe Lock'd N00b Advice" thread by trying to alter a kit early on, but I've been using yeast for many years, am very good in the kitchen and have made other alcoholic stuff before beer.. but I'm wondering about a few things

I only have a 2 gallon pot :( at the moment, though i do plan on buying a much larger one in the future, I'm planning on just putting 0.5 gallons of wort and 1 gallon of water into the pot (so i have a lower percent ale in the end than an IIPA) with the malt and hops

Noob question - do i need to sanitize the hops i put in at the dryhop stage, and how?

i dont think they sell wyeast at my beerstore or any around here, which safeale should i use? i was planning on just asking them

how much are hops roughly? just wondering because theres a fair bit required

i plan on letting it sit in the primary for two weeks, secondary for 10 days and to sit in bottles for at least a month. does this sound about right?

btw got a spray bottle for christmas, easier sanitizing!! :rockin:


i need help, i'd love any suggestions, including drastic ones, because... well. im a noob. thanks!
 

barleynhops

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Let's see, to knock your questions out first:
do i need to sanitize the hops i put in at the dryhop stage, and how?- No, just drop them in there. Your brew has fermented out by this point. There is little risk of critters ruining your beer at this point.

i dont think they sell wyeast at my beerstore or any around here, which safeale should i use? Use Safale-05...this is their American Ale yeast which will give it a cleaner taste...minimal taste imparted by the yeast.

how much are hops roughly? This really depends on where you purchase them. They can range from as little as $4 for a 2 oz bag to as much as $9 for the same bag. If you don't purchase them from your LHBS, then you'll want to factor in shipping.

i plan on letting it sit in the primary for two weeks, secondary for 10 days and to sit in bottles for at least a month. does this sound about right? That should do it, but make sure you take a gravity reading after your primary is complete.

Based on your plan, you're going to have a highly concentrated wort, so you're not going to get as good a hop utilization due to this. You'll want to factor that into your formulation. What is overall batch size supposed to be?
 

IceFisherChris

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No need to sanitize the hops before dry hopping. Beer is alcoholic and hoppy. A perfect combination to stop infections.

I haven't used it but I've heard Safale US-05 is great as it gives a crisp and clean taste.

Hops online will be about $3 per ounce and at my LHBS they are about $3.50 per ounce. Depending on what type you get, online bulk orders (HopsDirect.com) can get you 16 ounces for about $10. Huge savings in the long run.

Sounds right to me. You'll get a lot of mixed opinions on using a secondary... I do because it frees up my primary bucket. Either way, let it sit for 2 weeks minimum. A hydrometer will tell you when it's done fermenting. Personally I wouldn't check an FG reading until 2 weeks and you're just about to rack into the carboy. Less oxygen that gets to your beer = the better. I might get a lot of fire about this, but if I see bubbles in my air lock then I trust that it's fermenting and i just leave it the heck alone for 2 weeks.

About your recipe: It's going to be hard to adjust your volume to keep the recipe the same. (Changing the amount of malt extract and water will change hop utilization. Maybe even make it too bitter for you.) It can be done with software. Maybe you could download the trial version of Beersmith 1.4 and see how it goes. They have a new feature that does late extract additions. You could really boost up the bitterness of the beer by only adding half the extract during your boil.
Honestly you might want to think about doing a kit that involves longer boils. Those are only 20 minute boils... according to a chart I have, it takes about 7 minutes to achieve max aroma, 20 minutes for max flavor, and 50+ minutes for max bitterness. I love a bitter IPA and it just seems more logical to me to boil for 60 minutes. You'll just be spending more money on hops to make up for a short boil.
If you want to stick with the recipe that's fine, but venturing away from it is always fun. Recipes are needed for beer clones, but for everything else they are just guidelines.
 
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fredthecat

fredthecat

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cool, thanks for the hop advice, boiled it today. hmm too bad about the hop utilization (i made it this afternoon), and it was a learning experience as the hops were 3 bucks an ounce, though im saving 2 ounces. got the safale, the OG was 1.062. I'll just wait until im about to rack it to check the FG, im curious but would rather have it safe!

yeah i knew the recipe would be different, i dont want a total imperial IPA and wanted the % alot lower than the ~9.5% it would have made. i plan on letting it sit for a long time and i hope it turns out! ill check out that beer program, though admittedly my weakness is that i dont keep careful track of temperatures :(


thanks for the help, ill wait and see on this and i just.. cant wait to do another
 

McGarnigle

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Not sure if post #3 realizes this is a wort-in-the-bag kit. Brewing software won't help because you don't know what's in the wort already (it's already hopped of course).
 
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