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Session IPA Recipe Advice

I was just up in Vermont a week ago and sampled many interesting beers, including a couple that were collaborations between the Alchemist and Lawson’s. A particularly intriguing beer was called a Session IPA. It was 4% ABV, but the hops gave it a really great flavor. Nice, citrusy, bitter, but not too bitter.

So, of course I want to try something like this. Here’s what I’ve come up with as a recipe:

8.5 lbs 2 Row
.5 lbs Munich

1 oz. Simcoe @ 60
1/2 oz. Cascade @ 15
1/2 oz. Cascade @ 0

1056 yeast.

iBrewmaster tells me OG 1.041, FG 1.010 for an ABV 0f 4.06.

IBUs are 54.14

Probably should dry hop as well.

Any thoughts?

Kind of a waste of Simcoe, I’d get an ounce of Magnum of Chinook and move the Simcoe to dry hop. YOu might also want to use a full ounce at 15 and FO.

Agree with the above. Use Magnum to bitter and save the floral hops for the finish. I love Centennial & Cascade in the finish. I make a “house pale” (OG 1.045) that use 3+oz finish hops between 5 min and flame out with most added at flame out. Good stuff.

I’ve been brewing alot of what I call American Bitters lately - around 1.040OG, light in color, lots of American hops towards the end of the boil.

The IBU level you are proposing seems a bit high to me. I shoot for a BU/GU ratio of 1, maybe slightly less, with most of the bittering units coming from the late hopping. This process, paired with dry-hopping, will give you a nice hop flavor/aroma punch, nice bitterness, and a great session beer.

For what its worth, here is my latest version, which has been a perfect summer beer

4 gallons - Brew in a Bag (BIAB)

1.042 OG, 39 IBUs

95% 2-Row
5% Victory Malt
1oz Acid Malt

.9 oz Nelson Sauvin (10.5%AA) Pellets (First Wort Hop)
1oz Citra (13.7%AA) Whole Hops - 5 min
.75oz Citra Whole Hops - Dry Hop

Adjust water profile to 65 ppm Calcium, 90 ppm Sulfate, 50 ppm Chloride (give or take)



I’ve been making APA at around 1.055 and calculated IBU of upwards of 100. It doesn’t seem out of balance, just a hop delivery vehicle. I’m using 10oz of hops including 2oz each for FWH, 15, FO, and dry hops.

What temp is everyone’s mash? I have tried a couple of attempts at a 21 Amendment Bitter American clone. Based on some Brewing Network CYBI shows, I have been using a 158F mash to leave some more unfermentables in there. In both cases, I’ve ran into other problems in the brew day (overshooting gravity by too much due to change in milling set-up), so I’m not completely sure this is the right approach.

I think mashing warm is a good idea to leave some body left in the beer, but this can also be accomplished by usage of crystal malts, as well as a less attenuative yeast.

A session IPA is an APA fer gawd’s sake!

:lol: I was waiting for someone to mention that, most cases these are just hoppy Pale ales. I like the intent though too; I brew to the low side of the Pale Ale spec for OG, high side for IBU’s (mostly from late hopping).

I’ve found it easier to keep body in the beer by using a yeast like London ESB or West Yorkshire vs mashing really high.

I sort of mentioned it without trying to sound bossy!

as for a bitter, I wouldn’t mash high. You already get lower attenuation with British ale yeasts, plus your average bitter recipe generally has sugar in it so if anything its typically brewed a little more dry.

I do love that West Yorkshire yeast! I’m trying a fwe others now but I spent a year with it and it always performed. I like the lower ester profile it gives vs the Fuller strain (WLP002). I did like the way Fuller dropped out like a rock though. I’m going to ry WLP013 next.

I mash at about 153 for a 1.045 APA, and go heavy on the munich (30-40%), gives a nice malt flavor in a “low” body beer.

Mmmmm drinkin’ “house pale” right now…

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