Help with an IPA

So I’m not an IPA fan. Not much of a pale ale fan either. But my brother loves IPA, so I want to make a batch of something special for him. I played around with some stuff in my brewing software and I’d like some input before I try it. Yes, I know I could go with a kit, but it’s more fun making your own recipe, lol. Anyways, here’s what I have so far…

American IPA: (all grain, 5-gal batch)

6# German Pilsner (2-row)
5# Maris Otter
1# Flaked Corn
1# Brown Malt
0.5# Flaked Wheat

2 oz Northern Brewer @ 60
1 oz Citra @ 5
0.5 oz Fuggle @ 5

1 oz Northern Brewer - dry hop for 26 days

OG: 1.072
IBU: 56.7
SRM: 10.5

Medium body mash, batch sparge.

Personally I’d go with something simpler. In an IPA I like a clean malt backbone that will allow the hops to shine. I’m not a fan of hugely bitter IPAs so mine tend to be more flavor and aroma focused. Having said that your 56 IBU is really low for an IPA…more like a pale ale…maybe that’s what you wanted. I don’t know Northern brewer hops that well so I’ll let others comment on whether it’s a decent aroma hop or not.

I personally wouldn’t use pilsner in an IPA due to the grainy flavor it imparts and mixing german and english malts might start a war in your pint glass so be warned.

So I just do 2 row base malt, a couple pounds of vienna or munich and a little c40 bittered to about 25-26 IBU, then flavor and mostly aroma to almost 70IBU. I wouldn’t use fuggle in an IPA. I’m not a fan of it to start with but if you want that danky peaty whatever it imparts then again go fit it, it’s your beer.

Upvote to the above. NB’s are a good bittering hop for IPAs but I would really only use them as late additions in a steam. Though I haven’t tried it.

Our favorite IPA is 90% Thomas Fawcett Pearl malt, 3% oats, 7% white wheat to about 1.070. Bittering addition (we use hop extract aka Hopshot) gets it to around 60 IBU, then the rest of the hops are added at flameout (about 10 oz per 5 gallons) for a hopstand. This will get you huge aroma and flavor with a smooth, clean, primarily balancing bitterness. I frigging hate overly-bitter IPAs. Both for my own palette, its really just a d1ck-measuring arms race, and finally, it turns drinkers off to the category. But I LOVE well-made IPAs.

If you want a little more caramel in the flavor profile, add up to 5% crystal 40 (some go to 10%, but to me, that is bordering on Amber territory), or if you don’t want to go for Pearl, do 60/40% 2-row and light vienna to give it some malt character.

I like your idea to use Citra, but I would stay away from Fuggle. I would vote Citra/Centennial/Simcoe personally. First dry hops (2-3 ounces) added at tail end of fermentation, second dose of same amount added after you’ve dropped your yeast or racked off it. For God’s sake, do not dry hop this for 26 days. We personally dry hop for 5 days for each dose.

West Coast purists will tell you it needs to be Chico (US-05/WLP001) or some other super-clean yeast, but I love the esters some of the English-like yeasts throw off, especially Vermont Ale (Conan). The esters can really enhance the hops. Ferment at 68* to get some ester production.

Didn’t mention yeast…I personally like WY1272 good floccer and clean profile. I DH in the keg and leave them til it kicks but only 2-3 oz.

I brew something more along the lines of a beefed up Bell’s 2 Hearted though where @pietro wants a little more funk like Topper.

Funk!? How dare you…

Both these guys offer great advice. Only thing I might add, if you want a clean, raw, west-coast style IPA, keep the grain bill as simple as possible. Just base malt, and maybe some sugar to dry it out a little, and a clean yeast. If you want something with a little more body, and some more balance between the malt and hops, go with a grist like @pietro mentions above and a nice estery yeast. Bell’s yeast is awesome, and (I think) commercially available now through The Yeast Bay.

You know I meant it in only the most respectful and loving way… :kissing_heart:

Oh see IIIIIIIIIII thought by “funk” you meant “the most amazing, delicious and subtle peach/tangerine/grapefruity/passionfruity deliciousness with just a little hint of dank resinous pine needles that ever found its way into a beer glass”

Spot on as usual man! haha

Time fer a text hug! :blush: Now, fer me an IPA is basically pale malt, 15% Marris otter. IFN I use crystal maybe, 5% at best just to give a little color and mash higher temp, 158*. I like German magnum fer bittering. When my grain bill exceeds 11 lbs. I will use 3/4 oz, under that 1/2 oz works fine. The C’s hops , very late and a lot, flame out, the same. And lately I use that 3" tea ball in the keg, again C hops…. Hell no brown malt!!! Sneezles61

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Ok, I admit, I was just throwing grains at the wall to see what would stick, lol. But thanks everyone for the input, I’ll do some playing with it in a bit and post up a revised recipe.

When working on your own recipes this is a good place to start:
BJCP 2015

I’m not saying you have to color in the lines but there is a rhyme and reason when creating recipes. Not just throwing things to see what sticks. :wink:

You mash your pale ale at 158 deg ?

Well, it was kinda “what do I have that I could possibly use in this…” throwing grain at the wall.

My brother really likes Dogfishhead’s 120 minute IPA. I made an ill-advised attempt at cloning that a couple years ago that predictably failed. So I’m looking to do something more reasonable like a simple 60 minute IPA that he would probably enjoy.

I played in BeerSmith a little more, lets see what everyone thinks of this…

8# Pale 2-row
3# Maris Otter
1# Munich
1# Caramel 40
0.5# Flaked oats

2 oz Northern Brewer @ 60
2 oz Citra @ 5
1 oz Cascade @ 5

1 oz Citra - dry hop for 5 days
1 oz Cascade - dry hop for 5 days

OG: 1.071
IBU: 66
SRM: 9

Medium body mash, batch sparge.

Yup, I do like the heavier, if you will, taste in a lighter colored brew. I do use the low and high parameters of mashing temps for what ever brews I do… Belgiums I will mash as low as possible. It might be just me, but I feel it encouraged to try different temps once I git a grain bill I like. Sneezles61

I’m so doing this in the next couple months…it will be a fortune in hops :smile:

Very rarely do true ‘kitchen sink’ beers turn out well. @uncdeo you can get away without the a little more if it’s just hops but when you start throwing weird grain bills in with weird hop schedules then your into it for what it is.

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It won’t be a weird grain bill…i been working on a simcoe/mosaic IPA for awhile…so i’ll just be increasing the hop amounts :slight_smile:

Ifn I could, I’d push my mosaic hops through the tellaporter to you! I think they may be useful, but in an IPA, I’ll just have ice cubes and water…. :unamused:Sneezles61

mix the dry hops, so 0.5# each Citra/Cascade in each shot, 5 days each.

I would personally get rid of the MO altogether, I have tried it, and I just don’t think it belongs in AIPA’s/APA’s. To me there is just a weird tangy thing that gets in the way of the hops. 1# Munich, 1/2 # C40, rest base malt to get to your same gravity. I like the 0.5# oats.

I’d cut the bittering hops to 1.5oz, maybe even 1oz (though I’m used to using something with crazy high AA). How many IBU’s are you getting from that charge? I think NB’s will give you a nice earthy balance to the citrusy late hops.

I think you may like this beer more than you think…