Trying one of my favorites

So I’m a closet hop-head and have been wanting to brew an IPA for a while. Wanted to try some simpler recipes first before I dove into something a little crazier. I also have my focus on an Oktoberfest lager for the beginning of April, but I need something to fill my other keg with sooner rather than later!

I did some research on Imperial IPA’s and decided that maybe I could dive in. I found a few recipes online and wanted to try my hand at my own. Here’s a real modest attempt at what I could come up with. I would really like some feedback from those who are into IPAs!

11 lbs 2-row
5 lbs caramel 20l
1 lbs corn sugar late addition at 0 mins


1 oz Columbus at 90 min
.5 oz Warrior at 90 min
1 oz Chinook at 45 min
.5 oz Simcoe at 45 min
1 oz Centennial at 0 min
.5 oz Citra at 0 min

Dry hop:

2 oz of Citra, 1 oz of Chinook, 1 oz Simcoe

IBU’s are off the chart at 109. I suppose I could lower them a little just because I think maybe it goes a little overboard. I read somewhere that you want to go with hops that have a similar flavor profile and that pine/earthy/citrus are relatively common. The place I get a little confused I think is the hop bill and dry hop schedule. That’s where I am still doing my research, but figured I could start with the above.

The estimated OG is at 1.088, FG at 1.022 so at 8.6% ABV. Color is 12.3 SRM.

Just an opinion, but that hop schedule looks a little light on late additions. It’ll have a lot of bitterness from the 90 and 45 minute additions, but my knee-jerk reaction is that it’ll be light on hop flavor with only 1.5oz of flameout hops. YMMV. Did you check out any of the NB recipes?

Cut your crystal 20 back to 5% at most (you currently have it as about 29% of the grain bill).

I don’t see any benefit to hopping at 90 minutes, unless you like your beer to taste like orange pith. The IPAs and IIPAs I found I liked the best have a firm but not astringent bitterness and huge hop flavor/nose. Those come through more from late hops, hop stands and dry-hopping.

Look up Bearflavored’s Heady Topper clone (or NB’s Off The Topper) if you haven’t already bought ingredients. You won’t regret it.

Thanks for the insight!

I haven’t bought anything at all yet, so I am open to any suggestions. I briefly looked at the Plinian Legacy kit/recipe here at NB and saw it used two of the hopshots at 90 mins and then went pretty light on later addition hops.

I’m relatively new to trying to build my own recipes, and TOTALLY new to developing a balance hop schedule, so thanks for all of your input thus far!

Since you asked.Move up all your hop additions by 30 minutes. 5lbs of crystal is to much.

I recently did a three gallon batch that used over 9 ounces of hops that turned out great. 2 3/4 ounces went into the boil at various points and 6 2/3 went in after the boil: steeping and dry hopping.
The best IIPAs use a lot of finishing hops.

My last IPA I did 82% 2 row, 14% vienna malt, and 4% c40. I really like the way it turned out. Nice malt backbone to support the hops. Bittered to 25IBU, with a 20 min, 5 min, FO and DH for 64 total IBU all centennial. Kind of a beefed up Bell’s 2 Hearted.

That sounds pretty good!

Overall, I really like the Northern Brewer recipe Off the Topper. I looked it up when it was recommended here. I think I may just go with the kit this time, but I’m not giving up on myself just yet, so thanks for the recommendations!