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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: flbrewer on November 18, 2013, 09:56:56 PM

Title: IPA's
Post by: flbrewer on November 18, 2013, 09:56:56 PM
I brewed an IPA WAY back in June (~7% ABV) and it tasted pretty ok initially. Not surprisingly, it's syrupy sweet and has very little hop profile now. Is this normal for any home-brewed IPA that isn't kept in cool conditions while bottled?

Do other styles notoriously go south as fast as IPAs?
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: morticaixavier on November 18, 2013, 10:04:21 PM
yeah, IPA's don't like to wait around. Hence the Stone 'Enjoy By' IPA and Russian river imploring us not to age Pliny the Elder.

Those hops are really important for supporting and balancing the big malt sweetness. If you are looking for styles that age well, think darker stronger beers. dark Belgians, barley wines, Russian imperial stouts.

When making your own strong beer for ageing think about when you want to drink it and target a bitterness level that will result in what you want when you drink it. This is easier said than done and takes years of experimentation (shucks). I still haven't quite done it. Next try is in a couple weeks.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: dannyjed on November 18, 2013, 10:08:08 PM
This is exactly the reason why I heavily hop my American Barley wine every year. It starts to balance nicely after a year.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: alestateyall on November 18, 2013, 10:14:05 PM
Does bitterness fade overtime or just aroma? I always thought just the aroma. 

Thanks!
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: morticaixavier on November 18, 2013, 10:19:22 PM
Does bitterness fade overtime or just aroma? I always thought just the aroma. 

Thanks!

bitterness fades as well. one of the amazing things about how a strong hoppy beer like SN bigfoot ages, if it's well made, is that it transforms from a bitter hops forward American style beer to a soft, malty, rich English style beer.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 18, 2013, 10:40:17 PM
Bitterness ages more slowly than aroma or flavor. Eventually the balance goes from bitter, to balanced, to sweet/malty. The Bigfoot May be in the 60+ IBU range when balanced, 50 ish when it tips to sweet/malty. That does take years.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: duboman on November 18, 2013, 10:46:48 PM
Syrupy sweet? That seems to me like the balance of the beer was off to start meaning there were not enough IBUs to properly balance the beer. While the hop aroma and flavor will fade kind of quick, the bitterness balance should be more intact, a little less but not appreciably.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: jamminbrew on November 19, 2013, 12:40:42 AM
Syrupy sweet? That seems to me like the balance of the beer was off to start meaning there were not enough IBUs to properly balance the beer. While the hop aroma and flavor will fade kind of quick, the bitterness balance should be more intact, a little less but not appreciably.
My first thought, too. Maybe it was not fermented completely? Or stalled? What was the original recipe, and how did you ferment it?
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 19, 2013, 01:02:22 AM
Aroma fades first, then flavor, then bitterness last.  Big +1 to how well Bigfoot changes over the years.  I had a big vertical tasting last year that wiped out most of my Bigfoot.  I actually even love it fresh and hoppy, but it gets so much better over time.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: duboman on November 19, 2013, 01:15:19 AM

Syrupy sweet? That seems to me like the balance of the beer was off to start meaning there were not enough IBUs to properly balance the beer. While the hop aroma and flavor will fade kind of quick, the bitterness balance should be more intact, a little less but not appreciably.
My first thought, too. Maybe it was not fermented completely? Or stalled? What was the original recipe, and how did you ferment it?

He said he bottled so fermentation must've been complete or they'd be gushing or have exploded.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: flbrewer on November 19, 2013, 01:51:34 AM
Syrupy sweet? That seems to me like the balance of the beer was off to start meaning there were not enough IBUs to properly balance the beer. While the hop aroma and flavor will fade kind of quick, the bitterness balance should be more intact, a little less but not appreciably.
Good call. It was a little sweet to begin with.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: flbrewer on November 19, 2013, 01:52:59 AM
Quote
My first thought, too. Maybe it was not fermented completely? Or stalled? What was the original recipe, and how did you ferment it?

7 lbs Muntons extra light DME
1 oz Warrior or Magnum hops (60 min)
2 oz Amarillo hops (10 min)
2 oz Amarillo hops (0 min)
Safale US-05
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 19, 2013, 02:15:47 AM
IIRC from my early brewing days, Munton's were the least fermentable of the extracts (dry and liquid) with Briess being the most fermentable.  So that could explain the residual sweetness which has gotten worse over time.  A couple oz of flameout hops (with no dry hopping ) would fade fairly quickly in aroma.  In short I think you have a fairly sweet finishing extract and not enough hops for balance. More hop additions and quantity in the last 15 minutes with some dry hopping later on would give you a more intense flavor and aroma. Also adding some gypsum in the kettle would help dry the beer out a bit too.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: The Professor on November 19, 2013, 04:35:35 AM
This is exactly the reason why I heavily hop my American Barley wine every year. It starts to balance nicely after a year.

That's my philosophy with my own IPA.  Traditional IPA is of course aged for months.  I massively hop the brew since it will age for 8 months to a year...thus,  it is quite hoppy (and still aromatic) when I start consuming it.  I brew it a few times a year to make sure I always have some that is properly aged.

Typical American IPA is a different story... and honestly,  I just don't like most of them because all seem to I get from them are green and immature flavors.  The big exception is SN Celebration which I feel is a beautifully made IPA;  to me, it's the best one out there in both flavor and balance.  Most of the other IPAs on the store shelves these days are one-note and (as much as I despise the term) 'boring'.
Others' mileage/opinions will vary.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: klickitat jim on November 19, 2013, 04:47:02 AM
Mileage... is that what YMMV is? Your mileage may vary? If so I finally got that one.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: Stevie on November 19, 2013, 04:57:53 AM
Mileage... is that what YMMV is? Your mileage may vary? If so I finally got that one.

Make sure you learn what NSFW means.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: klickitat jim on November 19, 2013, 05:05:37 AM
Not Sexting Friend's Wife?
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: garc_mall on November 19, 2013, 06:28:23 AM
Mileage... is that what YMMV is? Your mileage may vary? If so I finally got that one.

Yup, 20 something to go!
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: beersk on November 19, 2013, 01:53:34 PM
Not Sexting Friend's Wife?
Ha! Good idea.

I hate acronyms, but it's a pointless battle.

I think The Professor might be missing out on a few exceptions to nicely balanced IPAs. Goose Island makes a nice one. Also, Latitude 48 by Sam Adam's, Odell IPA is definitely one of the better in the US. They're not one trick pony hop bombs. I think Surly Furious is also one of those beers that has a nice malt balance as well. But I'm not sure about aging them for as long as 8 months...maybe a few months, but 8 is overkill these days, I think. It's not like they have to be shipped half way around the world anymore.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 19, 2013, 02:24:57 PM
Not Sexting Friend's Wife?
NSFW=Not Safe For Work
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: klickitat jim on November 19, 2013, 03:46:54 PM
Ahhh makes sense
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 19, 2013, 04:25:43 PM
Not Sexting Friend's Wife?
NSFW=Not Safe For Work

Of course, that has no bearing on us retired guys, huh, Jeff?  :)
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: beersk on November 19, 2013, 04:40:44 PM
Not Sexting Friend's Wife?
NSFW=Not Safe For Work

I've always seen that one as NWS, not work-safe.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 19, 2013, 07:24:39 PM
Not Sexting Friend's Wife?
NSFW=Not Safe For Work

Of course, that has no bearing on us retired guys, huh, Jeff?  :)
There are still some things that one must use common sense on.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: drjones on November 20, 2013, 06:58:28 PM
Quote
The big exception is SN Celebration which I feel is a beautifully made IPA;  to me, it's the best one out there in both flavor and balance. 

I had a Celebration just the other night at a local pub and felt it was closer to an American Amber.  While it was lovely, I found it quite mild in hop bitterness and aroma.  Maybe I've become desensitized - or perhaps the bartender is just grabbing tap handles randomly again (I've never returned a meal, but I've returned the wrong draft on occasion).  Or, had this one faded from its fresher glory with time and travel distance (I'm in CT).
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 20, 2013, 07:12:41 PM
I had a Celebration just the other night at a local pub and felt it was closer to an American Amber.  While it was lovely, I found it quite mild in hop bitterness and aroma.  Maybe I've become desensitized - or perhaps the bartender is just grabbing tap handles randomly again (I've never returned a meal, but I've returned the wrong draft on occasion).  Or, had this one faded from its fresher glory with time and travel distance (I'm in CT).

You must have gotten a different batch than I did.  The hop character in what I've had has been fantastic.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: jeffy on November 20, 2013, 10:24:57 PM
I had a Celebration just the other night at a local pub and felt it was closer to an American Amber.  While it was lovely, I found it quite mild in hop bitterness and aroma.  Maybe I've become desensitized - or perhaps the bartender is just grabbing tap handles randomly again (I've never returned a meal, but I've returned the wrong draft on occasion).  Or, had this one faded from its fresher glory with time and travel distance (I'm in CT).

You must have gotten a different batch than I did.  The hop character in what I've had has been fantastic.

I'm on my third twelve pack this year and I'll say that you must have been served the wrong beer.  It has a ton of hop flavor and bitterness and a fresh hop aroma.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: Mark G on November 21, 2013, 01:11:54 AM
Maybe they tapped a keg from last year...
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: Delo on November 21, 2013, 02:32:59 PM
Our liquor store in town  finally got celebration ale in and I had some last night.  It was wonderful as always.  If there was a mix up in kegs it could have been worse.  About a month ago we were at a bar and they had Flying Fish Oktoberfish tap handle hooked up to a Miller Lite keg.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: drjones on November 22, 2013, 05:51:41 PM
I'll buy a six pack of Celebration today, then go back to the pub and order another so that I'm better informed.  Sounds like I got the wrong beer. 
Title: IPA's
Post by: alestateyall on November 22, 2013, 08:26:32 PM
I'll buy a six pack of Celebration today, then go back to the pub and order another so that I'm better informed.  Sounds like I got the wrong beer.

Let us know what you think. Regarding your amber comment: I find there are two types of American IPA's those with more caramel than I care for and those with less caramel, which is what I prefer.

There are a lot of them in the too much caramel category in my opinion.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 22, 2013, 08:37:24 PM
I'll buy a six pack of Celebration today, then go back to the pub and order another so that I'm better informed.  Sounds like I got the wrong beer.

Let us know what you think. Regarding your amber comment: I find there are two types of American IPA's those with more caramel than I care for and those with less caramel, which is what I prefer.

There are a lot of them in the too much caramel category in my opinion.

I totally agree.  I limit crystal to 5% in my IPAs for that reason. If I'm making an American Amber, I'll come up a bit.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 22, 2013, 09:03:14 PM
FWIW, Celebration is 9-10% C55-60.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: erockrph on November 23, 2013, 05:55:03 AM
FWIW, Celebration is 9-10% C55-60.

This blows my mind every time I hear it because there are so many syrupy sweet commercial IPA's out there. It makes me wonder what everyone else is doing wrong when SN makes a killer IPA with that much crystal malt.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: mabrungard on November 23, 2013, 03:09:17 PM
Whoa! 10% crystal is not a big deal. On top of that, the fermentability of the rest of the wort is going to have a huge effect on the final character of the beer.  I recall that SN does mash at very modest temperatures which promotes the fermentability of the wort and the resulting dryness of the beer.  Having a bit of crystal is probably not that big a deal.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: natebriscoe on November 23, 2013, 10:57:19 PM
Whoa! 10% crystal is not a big deal. On top of that, the fermentability of the rest of the wort is going to have a huge effect on the final character of the beer.  I recall that SN does mash at very modest temperatures which promotes the fermentability of the wort and the resulting dryness of the beer.  Having a bit of crystal is probably not that big a deal.
the byo recipe from a few months back has them mashing 156 or 157. Which I have used and it does work.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: hopfenundmalz on November 23, 2013, 11:25:40 PM
Whoa! 10% crystal is not a big deal. On top of that, the fermentability of the rest of the wort is going to have a huge effect on the final character of the beer.  I recall that SN does mash at very modest temperatures which promotes the fermentability of the wort and the resulting dryness of the beer.  Having a bit of crystal is probably not that big a deal.
the byo recipe from a few months back has them mashing 156 or 157. Which I have used and it does work.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk
The base malt is NA 2 row, which is high in a Diastatic power.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 24, 2013, 05:29:51 PM
the byo recipe from a few months back has them mashing 156 or 157. Which I have used and it does work.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

I know for a fact that they mash at 158.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 24, 2013, 05:31:40 PM
Whoa! 10% crystal is not a big deal. On top of that, the fermentability of the rest of the wort is going to have a huge effect on the final character of the beer.  I recall that SN does mash at very modest temperatures which promotes the fermentability of the wort and the resulting dryness of the beer.  Having a bit of crystal is probably not that big a deal.


Martin, I agree about the crystal.  It's not what you use as much as how you use it.  SN mashes Celebration at 158 with 10% crystal and still manages to make a very well balanced IPA with a nice dry finish.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: natebriscoe on November 24, 2013, 05:35:46 PM
the byo recipe from a few months back has them mashing 156 or 157. Which I have used and it does work.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

I know for a fact that they mash at 158.
well 156 comes out with the right fg on my system. Denny you seem to have some insight on SN celebration, any chance they are using pale ale malt instead of plain 2 row?
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: ajk on November 24, 2013, 05:48:36 PM

Syrupy sweet? That seems to me like the balance of the beer was off to start meaning there were not enough IBUs to properly balance the beer. While the hop aroma and flavor will fade kind of quick, the bitterness balance should be more intact, a little less but not appreciably.
Good call. It was a little sweet to begin with.
Oxidation can also create a honey-like note that seems sweet. Is the color any darker than it was a few months ago?
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 24, 2013, 06:35:56 PM
well 156 comes out with the right fg on my system. Denny you seem to have some insight on SN celebration, any chance they are using pale ale malt instead of plain 2 row?

Nope, definitely not.  90% pale, 10% C55-60, mash at 158, pitch 1056, ferment at 68.  That's from 2 different sources at SN who know!
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: erockrph on November 24, 2013, 09:08:51 PM
Whoa! 10% crystal is not a big deal. On top of that, the fermentability of the rest of the wort is going to have a huge effect on the final character of the beer.  I recall that SN does mash at very modest temperatures which promotes the fermentability of the wort and the resulting dryness of the beer.  Having a bit of crystal is probably not that big a deal.


Martin, I agree about the crystal.  It's not what you use as much as how you use it.  SN mashes Celebration at 158 with 10% crystal and still manages to make a very well balanced IPA with a nice dry finish.

I guess what gets me is that there are so many sweet IPA's out there. My first two thoughts are that either they used too much Crystal and/or mashed too high. It just makes me wonder what the hell they are doing if you can make a perfectly good IPA mashing at 158 using 10% Crystal malt.

I'm starting to come back around on the Crystal a bit. I've been brewing more English beers as of late, and my bitters & ESB's are perfectly fine with 10-12% Crystal malt, even when using a less attenuative yeast. They are certainly richer and fuller, but not sweet/underattenuated at all. I may have to start playing around with it in my IPA's again.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: HoosierBrew on November 24, 2013, 10:32:54 PM
I've usually mashed my Celebration type beers ~ 154F. And I don't doubt that SN mashes that high (but am surprised), so I have to assume that they use a ton of gypsum to achieve that balanced finish, like maybe ~ the 300ppm level of sulfate in Bru'nWater's Pale Ale profile. I've only used the higher levels in the last couple of years and the results are undeniable in a West Coast-type beer.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: blatz on November 25, 2013, 03:00:22 PM
erockph - maybe yeast?  i find one of our locals, Jai Alai IPA a little sweet as well, but they use WL002 from what i've been told, which maybe explains it.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: blatz on November 25, 2013, 03:02:35 PM
I've usually mashed my Celebration type beers ~ 154F. And I don't doubt that SN mashes that high (but am surprised), so I have to assume that they use a ton of gypsum to achieve that balanced finish, like maybe ~ the 300ppm level of sulfate in Bru'nWater's Pale Ale profile. I've only used the higher levels in the last couple of years and the results are undeniable in a West Coast-type beer.

I recall, but I don't know from where, that they use a ratio of something like 9:1 sulfate:chloride.  I will see if I can find where I saw that.  but i remember the ratio being staggering.  of course, it means very little chloride, not buckets of gypsum  :D

edit: See CYBI interview with Steve Dressler.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 25, 2013, 04:47:32 PM
I guess what gets me is that there are so many sweet IPA's out there. My first two thoughts are that either they used too much Crystal and/or mashed too high. It just makes me wonder what the hell they are doing if you can make a perfectly good IPA mashing at 158 using 10% Crystal malt.

I'm starting to come back around on the Crystal a bit. I've been brewing more English beers as of late, and my bitters & ESB's are perfectly fine with 10-12% Crystal malt, even when using a less attenuative yeast. They are certainly richer and fuller, but not sweet/underattenuated at all. I may have to start playing around with it in my IPA's again.

You forgot an obvious 3rd possibility...not enough hops.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: jeffy on November 25, 2013, 06:03:18 PM
erockph - maybe yeast?  i find one of our locals, Jai Alai IPA a little sweet as well, but they use WL002 from what i've been told, which maybe explains it.

They're using 1968 London ESB now.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: realbeerguy on November 25, 2013, 07:05:32 PM
Picked up  some Celebration this weekend.  Muted hop bitterness IMO. I've been making a Celebration Clone since then, and this year's is like the Celebration of the '90's.
Maybe the fresh hops this year have a lower bitterness to them.

+1 to 158 mash
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: mabrungard on November 25, 2013, 07:19:45 PM
I find that this year's Celebration is very sensitive to serving temperature. My fridge is set to 40F and that is too cold for serving that beer. All the flavors are closed down at that temp.  Let it warm up and its a different beer.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: dannyjed on November 25, 2013, 10:56:01 PM
I find that this year's Celebration is very sensitive to serving temperature. My fridge is set to 40F and that is too cold for serving that beer. All the flavors are closed down at that temp.  Let it warm up and its a different beer.
Very true and I even got a better/stronger aroma after it warms up a bit.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: natebriscoe on November 26, 2013, 04:42:48 AM
well 156 comes out with the right fg on my system. Denny you seem to have some insight on SN celebration, any chance they are using pale ale malt instead of plain 2 row?

Nope, definitely not.  90% pale, 10% C55-60, mash at 158, pitch 1056, ferment at 68.  That's from 2 different sources at SN who know!
Have you made this recipe?  What kind of final gravity are you and SN hitting with this recipe?  The byo article says 1.016.

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Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: denny on November 26, 2013, 04:52:50 PM
well 156 comes out with the right fg on my system. Denny you seem to have some insight on SN celebration, any chance they are using pale ale malt instead of plain 2 row?

Nope, definitely not.  90% pale, 10% C55-60, mash at 158, pitch 1056, ferment at 68.  That's from 2 different sources at SN who know!
Have you made this recipe?  What kind of final gravity are you and SN hitting with this recipe?  The byo article says 1.016.

Sent from my SCH-I535 using Tapatalk

SN says 4P (1.016).  That's about where mine ends up, too.
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: klickitat jim on November 28, 2013, 01:39:12 AM
Bought a six of Celebration today. They are in the fridge preparing to blow my mind. I must see what all the hype is about. I have high expectations, and a bomber of Elysian Valhalla just in case

Update...
Yum!
Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: ccfoo242 on November 28, 2013, 03:01:10 AM
Really digging Celebration. Not too hoppy. Not too malty. Nice balance. Piny goodness with Sierra Nevada's assertive bitterness. Love it.


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Title: Re: IPA's
Post by: gordonstrong on November 30, 2013, 01:39:35 AM
I think the keys to long-living IPAs are to have them well-attenuated from the start, to keep oxygen out of the works, and to keep them stored cool. 

American barleywines I tend to overhop, knowing that they'll fade back into balance over the course of several years, but most modern IPAs are essentially running beers made to be consumed quickly.  Historical recipes can be different, but most people today want to enjoy the freshest hop character possible.

If you're getting additional sweetness, I'd probably suspect oxidation first.  Or just too much crystal malt.  Unless you're going for the baby barleywine kind of IPA.  Nothing wrong with that, but it's more of a keeper/sipper than other types.