This summer was incredibly hectic–both in expected and unexpected ways–and thus it was hard to fit in as much brewing as I would like. One of my precious brewdays was set aside for a session IPA…and because things were topsy-turvy, I decided to run with kveik.
The recipe itself isn’t based on anything in particular, beyond past experience. I wanted a beer that was flavorful in hops, highly crushable, and not too over-the-top in alcohol. Thanks to my regular HOPBOX deliveries, I had no shortage of IPA-worthy hops.
I built the recipe with a base of Golden Promise malt, and a touch of light crystal malt to keep things from being too dry or too thin. As I often do with my session beers, I mashed high. Instead of a massive whirlpool addition, I tilted the hops towards the final five minutes of the boil, and loaded in a few ounces of dry hops in the keg. Citra, Mosaic, and Eclipse were a natural combination. I hadn’t brewed with Eclipse before, but the description suggested it would meld well with the other two. As for yeast, Voss Kveik seemed like a good fit. I’ve brewed with it a few times before, and the citrus notes hopefully wouldn’t clash. Plus, I liked the idea of a yeast that I didn’t have to baby too much during summer weather.
Citrosaic Session Ale
10 lb. Golden Promise Finest Pale Ale malt (Simpsons)
0.25 lb. Cara 20 (Dingemans)
0.25 lb. Carahell (Weyermann)
1 oz. Citra hop pellets (12.8% alpha), 30 minute boil
1 Whirlfloc tablet, 5 minute boil
1 oz. Citra hop pellets (13.6% alpha), 5 minute boil
1 oz. Eclipse hop pellets (16.8% alpha), 5 minute boil
1 oz. Mosaic hop pellets (11.6% alpha), 5 minute boil
Voss kveik (Lallemand), 1 pkg. dry yeast
1 oz. Citra hop pellets (13.6% alpha), dry hop in keg
1 oz. Eclipse hop pellets (16.8% alpha), dry hop in keg
1 oz. Mosaic hop pellets (11.6% alpha), dry hop in keg
1.046 s.g., 1.013 s.g., 4.4% abv, 66 IBU, 5 SRM
Claremont tap water, no adjustments
Full-volume mash, no sparge, at 156°
I mashed in with 7 gallons of water at 162°, to hit a mash temperature of 156°. I held it here with recirculation for 10 minutes. I added ~7 mL of 88% lactic acid at the start of the mash, to adjust pH.
After 60 minutes, I raised the mash temperature to 168°, held it here for 10 minutes, and then removed the grains.
In total, I collected 6.1 gallons of runnings with a gravity of 1.043, for 69% mash efficiency.
I brought the mash to a boil, adding hops and finings per the recipe. After 60 minutes, I turned off the heat and chilled down to around 90°.
I brewed this beer on 11 July 2022. Starting gravity was 1.048.
I transferred the wort to my fermenter, pitched the yest, and let things roll at ambient temperature. Everything was rocking within 6 hours, and had slowed down within 18 hours.
Although I planned to keg this within a week or so, life got in the way (thanks, COVID), and it wasn’t until 13 August 2022 that I managed to get things transferred. I was a bit worried about flavor damage or oxidation, but it didn’t seem too awful.
I added the hops in a bag, at the time of kegging. Final gravity was 1.022, for 3.4% abv.
Medium-gold, fairly hazy, pours with a creamy and persistent white head.
Fresh tangerine is prominent in the hop aroma, with a bit of passion fruit and other tropical notes; there is a touch of dankness as the beer warms up. And of course I get the class blueberry. Fermentation aroma is clean.
Very bitter, with a slight hop “bite” and citrus pithiness. The very prominent hop flavor includes orange/tangerine, grapefruit, and a bit of blueberry. It tastes quite “juicy”! Malt is clean, with a slight hint of light caramel sweetness and graininess.
Medium dry, with a dry finish. Moderate carbonation.
Would I Brew This Again?
Yes! This is just a nice summer IPA, in the tropical/citrus tradition. I don’t want these flavors all the time, but I really liked this particular recipe. The kveik meshes well with the hops, and has a surprisingly clean profile. It just stays out of the way. I wouldn’t mind if the clarity was better (hence my lower rating), but in the end this is a highly crushable IPA, exactly what I wanted.
My latest session IPA was a bit of a kitchen sink beer, but also one where I wanted to create a slightly more “traditional” northwest IPA. That means citrus and pine for the hops, and no fear of the crystal malt. To ground my malt character, I used Vienna malt as the base, with a healthy dose of rye malt on top of that. I used about 7% crystal malt to add some body and depth. The overall results were pretty fantastic!
8 lb. Vienna malt (Weyermann)
1.5 lb. rye malt (Viking)
0.5 lb. crystal 40 (Great Western)
0.25 lb. crystal 60 (Great Western)
2 oz. rice hulls
0.5 oz. Warrior hop pellets (15.8% alph), 60 minute boil
0.4 oz. Chinook hop pellets (13.0% alpha), 60 minute boil
1 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.5% alpha), 3 minute boil
1 tsp. Fermax yeast nutrient, 10 minute boil
1 Whirlfloc tablet, 5 minute boil
1 pkg. American West Coast Ale yeast (BRY-97)
1 oz. Amarillo hop pellets (9.2% alpha), dry hop in keg
0.5 oz. Cryo-Cascade hop pellets (12.0% alpha), dry hop in keg
0.4 oz. Columbus/Tomahawk/Zeus (CTZ) hop pellets (15.5% alpha), dry hop in keg
1.047 s.g., 1.012 f.g., 4.5% abv, 7 SRM, 46 IBU
Infusion mash, 156°, batch sparge; 60 minute boil
Claremont water, with 3 g gypsum and 5 g epsom salts added to kettle during chilling, to hit approximate mixture of 51 ppm Ca, 32 ppm Mg, 71 ppm Na, 156 ppm SO4, 75 ppm Cl, ~100 ppm HCO3
I mashed in with 3.75 gallons of water, heated to 167°. Once it had cooled down to 163°, I added the grains, and hit a mash temperature of 153°. I added ~2 mL of 88% lactic acid to bring the mash pH down a touch.
Around 30 minutes in, I added 2 gallons of water at 175°, to raise the mash temperature to 157°.
After 60 minutes of mashing, I collected the first runnings. Then, I added 3 gallons of water with 2.5 mL of 88% lactic acid, to neutralize carbonates. This should result in around ~100 ppm HCO3.
I brought the kettle to a boil, adding hops and such per the recipe.
After 60 minutes, I began the chilling process. At this point, I realized that I had forgotten to add the gypsum and epsom salts I had intended to add earlier, so boiled them in a cup of water and put this into the wort.
Once I had chilled a bit, I transferred to the fermenter and then chilled the rest of the way, down to 68°, in my fermentation chamber.
I brewed this beer on 8 August 2020, and fermented at 66°. Starting gravity was 1.048.
I brought the beer up to ambient garage temperature (78° to 80°) on 15 August 2020, to finish out fermentation.
I kegged the beer on 21 August 2020, adding 2.85 oz. of corn sugar for natural carbonation along with the dry hops in a bag. I let it sit at ambient for about a week, before chilling and finishing carbonation via forced CO2.
Deep gold in color, with an orange tinge, and only a slight haze. This beer dropped surprisingly clear after ~2 weeks in the keezer! A persistent off-white head holds modest lacing along the side of the glass.
Hop forward, with citrus/orange at the front, and a bit of earthiness behind that. Yeast character is clean, and not much in the way of malt is noticeable.
Bitterness level is moderately high, with an orange/citrusy character. It’s distinctly tilted towards the hops, with the malt in the background in terms of balance. Malt character is grainy with only a hint of caramel notes, and avoiding any perception of sweetness. I get a touch of rye spice as the beer warms up, but I’m surprised the rye doesn’t come through more prominently. That’s probably an okay thing, though, in that it doesn’t overwhelm the beer. As I finish more of the glass, the pine character of the hops starts to shine through.
Medium-light bodied, with an extended dry finish and a lingering bitterness. Moderate carbonation.
Would I brew this again?
This is one of the better session IPAs I’ve done over the years. It’s got sufficient character to be interesting, and enough body to keep it from seeming thin. The citrus character is very nice, and I think the blend of hops is spot-on for this kind of beer. It’s squarely in the northwest IPA tradition, with plenty of citrus and not much of the tropical fruit character so common in IPAs nowadays. It’s interesting that the pine character manifests a bit late as I drink the beer, and same for the rye notes. That’s okay by me, though. I could certainly play with the hops more, but the grain bill is pretty close to perfect.
For a variety of reasons, I haven’t been able to blog about every single batch I brewed in 2018. Many of the ones that didn’t make the cut were repeat brewings of successful recipes. Because I’m not likely to get all of them with full blog posts at this stage, I’m giving myself semi-amnesty by listing them with brief comments.
Cerveza de Jamaica 1.1
This was a rebrew of the first version, which I really liked. Version 1.1 was modified very slightly to add a little more hibiscus and a little more orange peel, and the result was an incredibly tasty beer!
Double IPA / Hoppy Blonde Ale
This was an experiment with parti-gyle techniques, co-brewed with a friend. The double IPA ended up at around 7.8% abv, and was fairly tasty. The blonde ale rounded out at 4.6% abv, and was also pretty nice. The experiment was a lot of work on brew day, but a fun attempt.
Raspberry Belgian 2018
I rebrewed a house favorite recipe for a beer festival, and thus didn’t really get to taste the final result (sadly). Everything on the process was tasty, though, so I’ll be doing this one again too.
Bavarica Session IPA
This one was pretty disastrous! The flavors clashed horribly (never again will I use Munich malt in a session IPA), and I dumped most of the batch.
Grab Bag IPA
Basically to use up a bunch of ingredients. Nothing memorable here, although it was pretty drinkable.
Grapefruit Wheat Ale
I don’t have many notes on this, other than that I used Amoretti grapefruit craft puree for some of the flavoring.
My previous session IPA didn’t turn out terribly great (not even worth a blog post), due at least in part to a clash between the hops and malt. Munich just ain’t a good base for even a session IPA, so lesson learned! For a second try, I am switching over to Vienna malt and using up some hops in the freezer. The Cascade hops are whole hops that my dad sent. These are interesting, in that they are a bit more earthy/herbal than I typically think of for Cascade. Terroir, I suppose. I also used some Falconer’s Flight hop pellets, free courtesy of a brewing friend.
Summertime Session IPA
7 lbs. Vienna malt (Great Western Malting)
1 lb. Maris Otter pale malt
0.5 lb. flaked oats
0.5 lb. white wheat malt
0.5 oz. Warrior hop pellets (15.8% alpha), 60 minute boil
1 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.5% alpha), 10 minute boil
1 Whirlfloc tablet, 10 minute boil
2 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.5% alpha), 10 minute whirlpool
1 pkg. Empire Ale Yeast (Mangrove Jack’s M15)
3 oz. Falconer’s Flight hop pellets (9.1% alpha), dry hop in keg
1.046 o.g., 1.014 f.g., 4.1% abv, 44 IBU, 5 SRM
Infusion mash to hit target of 155°, 45 minutes, batch sparge.
Claremont tap water, treated with Campden tablet
I mashed in with 3.25 gallons of water heated to 166.5°, to hit a mash temperature of 153.5°. After 15 minutes, I added 1.5 gallons of water to raise the temperature to 155°. After 45 minutes of total mashing, I drained the mash tun and collected the first runnings.
Next, I sparged with 3.5 gallons of water at 185°, let it sit for 10 minutes, vorlaufed, and collected the second runnings.
In total, I collected 6.7 gallons of wort with a gravity of 1.039, for 78% efficiency.
After starting the boil, I added the hops and kettle finings per the schedule. At flame-out, I added the whirlpool hops and let it sit for 10 minutes before chilling to 74°.
I transferred the wort to the fermenter, added the yeast, and fermented the beer at 68°. This batch was brewed on 16 May 2018.
Starting gravity was 1.046, and final gravity was 1.016, for 3.9% abv. A perfect session beer!
I kegged the beer on 27 May 2018, adding the hops to the keg in a bag. I let it sit at temperature for a few days while carbonating, until 2 June 2018, when I moved it back to the fermentation chamber and dropped the temperature down to 34°.
This is a decent enough beer, but nothing remarkable. Because I used older hop pellets for the dry hopping, there’s not a ton of aroma. Bitterness versus maltiness is fairly perfect, and I’d be pretty happy with this bittering level as well as this malt combination in future recipes. This is a highly drinkable beer, so I suspect I’ll be going through this fairly quickly even if the flavor/aroma aren’t exceptional for an IPA.
I “needed” to brew another IPA, and was in the mood for something a bit lower in alcohol. The November 2014 issue of Brew Your Own magazine had a clone recipe for Suicide Squeeze IPA, from Fort George Brewery. It was a nice session-ish beer (4.7% abv), and the recipe called for stuff I had pretty much entirely on hand. With just a few minor modifications, my recipe was all set! The name for my personal take on this (Ophidia) refers to a scientific name for snakes, because the original Fort George product had a snake on the label for the can.
8 lbs. 3 oz. 2-row malt (California Select, Great Western Malting Co.)
1 lb. Munich I malt (Weyermann)
0.5 lb. caramel 40° malt (Briess)
0.5 lb. flaked oats
0.25 lb. Carafoam malt (Weyermann)
0.45 oz. Warrior hop pellets (15% alpha), 60 minute boil
1 oz. Citra hop pellets (14.1% alpha), 5 minute boil
1 oz. Mosaic hop pellets (11.3% alpha), 5 minute boil
2 oz. Mosaic hop pellets (11.3% alpha), 5 minute steep
1 Whirlfloc tablet, 10 minute boil
1 tsp. Fermax yeast nutrient, 10 minute boil
2 oz. Mosaic hop pellets (11.3% alpha), dry hop in keg
1 oz. Citra hop pellets (14.1% alpha), dry hop in keg
156° mash, 45 minutes
1.053 o.g., 1.019 f.g., 4.4% abv, 52 IBU, 6 SRM, 5.5 gallons into the fermenter
24 hours in advance of brewing, I made a 1.5L starter. This is the second use for the culture–I set aside 0.55L for later use.
My water was 5.25 gallons of Claremont water mixed with 3 gallons of RO water and 5 g of gypsum. For the strike/first round of sparge water, I used 1.5 gallons of RO and 3.25 gallons of Claremont water, with the gypsum added directly into the mash tun. For the rest of the sparge water, I used 1.5 gallons of RO with 2 gallons of Claremont tap water.
I mashed in with 4.75 gallons of water 167°, to hit a mash temperature of 153°. This was a bit below my target, but I figure I’ll roll with it. I did only a 45 minute mash, before vorlaufing and collecting the first runnings.
I sparged with 3.5 gallons of water at 185°, to hit a mash temperature of 168° for the mash-out.
I collected 6.75 gallons of wort at a gravity of 1.044, for 77% efficiency.
I started the boil, and added the various ingredients per the schedule. After a 60 minute boil, I chilled the wort to 68° and pitched the yeast.
Starting gravity was 1.055, slightly above my target but not by too much.
I brewed this beer on February 6, 2017, and fermented at 66° for the first four days. Then, I removed it from the fermentation chamber (to make room for another beer), and fermented it at ambient room temperature with a heating pad beneath the carboy, to maintain ~68° in the fermenter.