First IPA, sooooo many hops

So after a handful of batches I’ve decided to create an IPA. While Beersmith has helped mightily in nailing down gravity and color, it doesn’t have much info on hops. I want a fairly typical flavor and aroma, with dominant citrus and pine. Any suggestions? I’m thinking mainly cascade and chinook…

Columbus + Cascade, Centennial + Amarillo, Chinook + Chinook - the possibilities are endless. Probably depends on what you can get and how much you’re willing to spend.

I’m fortunate enough to live within a few miles of NB’s St Paul store, so I can get most hops on short notice. How does budget factor in? Are you saying that certain “in-demand” varieties are going to be much more expensive?

Why don’t you try a tried and true recipe for your first IPA so you don’t have to stress and guess?

This. Go to NB, grab a copy of Brewing Classic Styles, and turn to the page on American IPA, then proceed to the hops section of the store. If you’re really a nice guy, buy the copy of BCS. Its a great pickup any way you slice it.

[quote=“Joester”]How does budget factor in? Are you saying that certain “in-demand” varieties are going to be much more expensive?[/quote]Hops can be expensive if you buy them by the oz for an IPA and depending on AA% of the hops you choose, you might have to buy a half-lb of hops, maybe more. And yes, some hops cost more than others - Columbus is cheap, Amarillo not so much.

As others have suggested, using a known recipe might be a good place to start.

Like has been said, If you’ve never brewed one yet you ought to just pick up one of NB’s IPA kits. It will likely be cheaper too than buying everything individually.

I guess I like the idea of making my own recipes. I’ve made several kits, and they’ve all turned out great. This, along with a thorough reading of Palmer’s How to Brew has led me to believe that I have the fundamentals down, and now I’d like to start making my own recipes.

If my two choices were either A) Build custom recipes, learn from them, and refine, or B) Make good beer from pre-made kits, I would go with option A.

I dove in the same way as you, Joester, and I love making my own recipes. Best part is making the same one over and over, tweaking it each time to ‘correct’ perceived ‘imperfections’. I just brewed version two of my favorite original IPA. Here’s the hop schedule, only difference from the last one, which I really liked, is the first wort Willamette:

first wort 60 min .7oz Willamette ~ pellet 4.7 AA
boil 60 min .7oz Simcoe ~ pellet 13.0 AA
boil 10 min .7oz Columbus ~ pellet 13.9 AA
boil 5 min 1oz Simcoe ~ pellet 13.0 AA
boil 1 min 1oz Columbus ~ pellet 13.9 AA
dry hop 10 days 2oz Willamette ~ pellet 4.7 AA

Note that it was fairly low gravity for an IPA (target was 1.059, I hit 1.054…out of practice, I guess, and the beer is technically 2 points out of style…oops), so if you use this schedule, adjust accordingly.

Try falconers flight…delicious!