And as I see that you have a Ballantines logo as your picture, is your IPA recipe a Ballantines clone?Long answer, probably belongs in a thread of it's own (your call, Denny!!... Let me know if it gets moved to a new thread. I could write a whole book about Bally IPA)
In any case...
I have indeed experimented a lot coming up with a clone of the Ballantine IPA (still the
definitive IPA as far as I'm concerned). I have tried several recipes from other sources but none seem to capture the intense but clean bitterness of the original...I suspect that some of the recipes out there were made by people who never really tasted the original (it was only brewed to the original recipe until the early-to-mid 1980's...it was thinned down after that, and disappeared altogether not too long after that).
Most clones I've tasted weren't bitter enough or aromatic enough, and none of them had the full year of aging that is essential to the character of the original brew.
I've come up with two variations that come pretty darned close, except for the elusive, intense aroma of the original...literally like sticking your head in a bag of fresh hops. I've yet to have any other beer --commercial or otherwise-- that smelled so
richly of hops. According to those who brewed the original (40+ years ago), the brew was both dry hopped and
dosed with a mighty helping of home-made (distilled at the brewery) aromatic hop oil.
So I'm still tweaking my recipe and have come close enough to make me want to continue the quest.
found one thing for certain though...that year-long aging is a non-negotiable requirement. It is definitely essential to the brew and makes a big difference in the bitterness factor...it is still intensely
bitter after the year long aging, but without harsh 'green' notes common to most of the commercial IPAs out these these days.