Monday, August 13, 2012

Black IPA...or Double Black IPA

This whole Black IPA trend has been hit or miss with me.  Out of the handful of Black IPAs I have tried there have only been a few that I really enjoyed.  However after trying the Hill Farmstead Society and Solitude #2 I decided it was probably time for me to give it a go with the style.

I have been meaning to brew a beer with my friend Mike Ingrassia so after a few months of planning we finally figured out a brew day and set out to create a Black IPA.  Here is the recipe for an 11 gallon batch size.

Malt and other Fermentables
22 lbs of American 2 Row (82%)
¼ lb of Weyermann Carahell (11 L german crystal malt) (1%)
½ lb of Weyermann Cara Aroma (130 L) (2%)
1 lb of Carafa III (Dehusked) (4%)
1 lb of Flaked Oats (4%)

1 lb of corn sugar (3.5%)
1 lb of orange blossom honey (3.5%)

Maltoferm A-6001 (added ~ 2 ounces right before kegging.  Boiled in 2 cups of water for a few minutes, cooled and added fermenter.  The original plan was to use Sinamar in the boil, however none of our local homebrew shops had it and Maltoferm was recommended to us after we had already brewed the beer)

4 oz of Columbus at 60 Minutes
1 oz of Simcoe at 20 Minutes
1 oz of Simcoe at 10 Minutes
2 oz of Simcoe at KO
2 oz of Columbus at KO

2 oz of Citra Dry – Pellets (10 Days)

2 oz of Amarillo Dry – Pellets (10 Days)

2 oz of Simcoe Dry – Pellets (3 Days)

Mashed around 149F for 60 minutes.  Added the carafa halfway through the mash.  So that was only in the mash tun for 30 minutes (was hoping to get the color but hold back on some of the roast).

WLP001 and WLP007 (1 vial of each with a starter)
Ferment at 68-69 F
Once fermentation slows down add first dry hop addition.
I drop my fermentation temp to 40F when it's time to transfer to a keg in order to drop out the massive amount of dry hops and the yeast.

OG – 1.070
FG - 1.009
ABV - 8%
IBUs - 80

Tasting Notes
Appearance - The beer pours a deep black with a rich creamy deep tan head that left sticky lacing.

Aroma -  Tropical fruits, orange rind and floral hop notes.  Hops are very up front with hints of caramel malt and the lightest hint of roast.  Some alcohol sweetness present in the nose, however it's not a hot or solventy type of heat.

Flavor - For an under 1.010 FG beer there is still some hints of sweetness but most likely from the alcohol.  There are hints of roasted malt (very slight) and some caramel malt but this beer is primarily dominated by the hops.  Mixed citrus notes, piney and floral.

Overall -  The efficiency of my system has been yielding higher starting gravity wort lately so while we set out to brew a Black IPA...this one ended up to be more of a Double Black IPA.  The color, hop aroma and roast/caramel malt notes were exactly what we set out for.  I would try to work the Sinamar or Maltoferm into the brew kettle the next time around like we originally planned to do.  I can't say that I specifically detect it in the final beer, however there may be a slight chalkiness there...and that could be adding to the sweetness that I'm perceiving as alcohol sweetness as well.  Either way I would recommend this Black IPA recipe to anyone looking to try out a slightly higher ABV Black IPA.  Maybe just lower the target ABV to 6-7% and use the Sinamar/Maltoferm in the boil kettle.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

American Wheat Pale Ale

This time around I set out to brew a nice and dry, wheat based American Pale Ale.  I wanted to pack in as much orange and lemon zest notes that I could into a fairly easy drinking wheat based beer.  I toyed with the idea of adding some lemon and orange zest to one of the kegs, however once I tasted the finished beer I decided to pass on the citrus zest addition.  Between the Sorachi Ace and Amarillo hops this beer had all the citrus notes that I wanted from the hops alone.  I'm still not certain I love what the Sorachi Ace hops added to this beer.  Yes the lemon notes are there, however I do get hints of the dreaded "dill" that other brewers have noted with the use of Sorachi Ace. The next time around I may switch out he Sorachi Ace hops with some Citra hops.  I did like how the WLP320 - American Wheat yeast kept the yeast profile  of this beer fairly neutral and it certainly dried it out. My final gravity was closer to 1.005 and the oats helped the beer to maintain some body.  The keys to this beer is the use of the oats (at least 4%) and the heavey use of late addition hops and dry hops. The recipe is simple and I feel as though it makes one great hoppy summer beer.

11 gallon batch

13 lbs of Wheat Malt (54 %)
10 lbs of American Pale 2 Row (42%)
1 lb of Flaked Oats (4%)

1 lb of rice hulls

1.5 oz of Columbus at 60 Minutes
2 oz of Sorachi Ace at 10 Minutes
2 oz of Amarillo at KO

2 oz of Amarillo Dry – Pellets (7 Days)
1 oz of Sorachi Ace Dry – Pellets (7 Days)

WLP320 – American Wheat

Pre-Boil Gravity – 1.049
OG – 1.057
FG – 1.008
ABV – 6.5%
IBU's - 40

7.5 gallons of mash water at 145-148 F
9 gallons of sparge water

60 Minute Boil

I plan to brew a Black IPA this weekend with my good friend Mike Ingrassia.  Once we see how that one turns out we will post the recipe here.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Death Metal Recipe Published

So it's been a while since I have posted an update to this blog.  When I noticed today that Sam Calagione's new book Extreme Brewing, A Deluxe Edition was released on June 1st, I figured it was time that I at least throw a quick update on the old homebrewing blog.  Sam featured my Death Metal recipe in the updated version of his book and I realized that a link to this blog was published in that book.  So if you have come across this blog after reading my recipe in the book, I welcome you!  I will do my best to stay on top of updating this blog with new recipes and my various other adventures in craft brewing as best I can.

Death Metal did bring home another first place this past weekend in the annual Buzz Off Homebrew Competition. The results are posted here.

If you would like more information on Death Metal and my experience brewing with Dogfish Head the best summary is posted here.

If anyone has tried out the recipe that was published, please get in touch with me.  I would love to figure out a way to try your homebrewed version of my beer!