Batch 127 – A Slightly Indian Pale Ale

I’ve never really managed to brew a really good American IPA. I’ve tried clone recipes and my own concoctions, and perhaps I’ve had my sights set too high but I’ve never really liked any of them. I’m sure many would find them quite allright and even good, but my standard is a Ballast Point Sculpin or a Founder’s Centennial or a Firestone Walker Union Jack (peace be upon it).


So, encouraged by the success (looks, smells and tastes good) with my Slightly Pale Ale (Batch 119) I concieved a brilliant plan.

One of the success factors of the Slightly Pale Ale was to balance it in the middle of the envelope, i.e. OG and bitterness correspond 1:1 according to the style and they fall on the midpoint of the range:


So, to achive an equally good IPA I figure I can simply jack it up and adjust OG and bitterness for an equally balanced profile:


As you can see, the OG is raised from 52 to 63 and the bitterness is raised from 39 to 52 but they are still sitting right down the middle of the style profile. Now, raising the OG and bitterness is not that linear in practice. Some malts may not work well in larger beers and 55 IBUs can be achieved in a number of ways that significantly affects hop character beyond bitterness. In this case I’m keeping the malt bill (but when I jack it up one more notch to a DIPA I will start using sugar) but I’m ditching the 60 minute Magnum addition and letting the late hop additions take care of the bittering. Also, I’m substituting some of the hop varieties for some classic C-hops for that old school American IPA hop character.



Style – American IPA
OG/FG 63/11
IBU 55
ABV 6,9 %
Vol 21 L


5,53 kg (83,9 %) Pilsner malt
0,66 kg (10 %) Carapils
0,41 kg (6,1 %) Caramünich II

75 min @ 65 degrees C for 26 liters of wort @ SG 1,054


90 minutes

40 g/10,7 IBU Cascade for 15 min
40 g/21,6 IBU Chinook for 15 min
40 g/22,9 IBU Citra for 15 min

Chill to just below 80 degrees C.

40 g/0 IBU Cascade 20 min whirpool/hopstand
40 g/0 IBU Chinook 20 min whirpool/hopstand
40 g/0 IBU Citra 20 min whirpool/hopstand

Chill to 20 degrees C.


SafAle US-05 or liquid Cal Ale yeast

Ferment at 20 degrees until finished (~7 days). You may raise the temperature to 22 degrees for the last couple of days if you’re afraid of diacetyl. Dryhop accordingly:
35 g Cascade for 6 days
35 g Chinook for 6 days
35 g Citra or 6 days

35 g Cascade for 3 days
35 g Chinook for 3 days
35 g Citra for 3 days

Packaging & Carbonation

I will keg this one and force carbonate it for 2,5 volumes of CO2 at 6 degrees C for abut a week.

D + 17
After 7+4 days of dryhopping I have kegged this beaut. Despite the heavy hopping (25 g / liter or 6,5 lb/bbl) it is fairly settled, not clear but not cloudy either. Hazy. We’ll see how that developes. The pale ale it was modeled on had about half that amount of hops and it cleared up perfectly during keg-conditioning.

Final gravity read 1,004. That means a higher ABV than anticipated – 7,6 – which still works fine for an IPA. My beers ferment really well. I think. My hydrometers are calibrated so I do not think they give me false readings, but I almost always reach lower FGs than BeerSmith predicts. I control my frementations with a STC-1000 in a dedicated fridge and hold temperatures well during the first 72 hours before I regularly raise it to eliminate diacetyl. Which leeds to low FGs.

It smells and tastes wonderfully already. Very tropiccal with pineapple and mango even though I used, in this day and age, rather traditional IPA C-hops. Really eager to try it out in about a week.


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