So I just tasted my third all grain IPA. I’m very disheartened by how similar they are all tasting. There is very subtle differences between each and if I had them right next to each other i could tell them apart but if I wasn’t specifically looking for those difference i it wouldn’t be easy to notice them. The first thing I notice about all of them is they are all very dry. Very little, if any, residual sweetness. There is a very distinct flavor that is common among them all and I can’t really describe what exactly it is. Almost an acidic or maybe minerally quality. My first thought was that it was possibly too much calcium sulfate but the other ingredients were rather different I’m not sure something as simple as a salt addition would cause them all to taste so similar.
Even my water profiles were a bit different for each of these beers. The only similarities were the base malt. Here are the details of each beer:
Beer 1 (Dead Ringer)
- 11lbs 2 row (Rahr)
- 1lb C40 (Briess?)
- 1lb table sugar (to boost gravity due to crappy efficiency)
- 1oz Centennial @ 60
- 1oz Centennial @ 20
- 2oz Centennial @ 5
- 1oz Centennial dry hop 7 days
- Yeast: US-05
- Forgot to record exact water profile but I remember shooting for a 5.4 mash pH and about 250 sulfate. My base water profile has 17 Cl. I acidified sparge water down to around 5.5
- 13.5lb 2 row (Rahr)
- 1lb C15 (Great Western)
- 2oz Magnum @ 90
- 2oz Centennial hopstand for 20 min
- 2oz Centennial dry hop 7 days
- Yeast: WLP007 - Dry English Ale
- Water profile: Ca 126, Mg 9, Na 11, SO4 255, Cl 17, mash pH 5.5. Acidified sparge to 5.5
- 11lbs 2 row (Rahr)
- 0.5lb C40 (Briess)
- 0.5lb Munich (Weyermann)
- 0.25lb Carapils/Dextrine (Briess)
- 0.75oz Simcoe @ 60
- 0.5oz each Simcoe/Amarillo @ 30
- 0.5oz each Simcoe/Amarillo/Cascade @ 10
- 0.5oz each Simcoe/Amarillo/Cascade @ flameout
- 1oz Cascade, 0.75oz Simcoe, 0.5oz Amarillo dry hop for 7 days
- Yeast: WLP001 - California Ale
Water profile: (50% diluted tap) Ca 133, Mg 4.5, Na 5.5, SO4 296, Cl 8.5, mash pH 5.4, acidified sparge to 5.8.
All water calculations were determined using my the Ward Labs report off my tap water(about 6 months old) and Brunwater. I do not own a pH meter so I couldn’t confirm the accuracy of the pH.
I really would like to get to the bottom of this. I don’t mind buying commerical IPA’s but I would really like to nail this issue so I can start brewing killer IPA’s. It’s not that these beers are unpleasant at all it’s just a flavor I don’t want in my IPA’s and havent tasted in any commercial examples.
Sorry for the long post. What’s everyone think?