Tonight (10 January 2016) I kegged my Jarrylo Session IPA, which has been fermenting for 11 days. The yeast had dropped very clear, and the beer had a malty flavor (all that Munich!) with a rather subdued bitterness. I’d probably place it in the pale ale rather than than IPA category. Nonetheless, it’s shaping up nicely!
Final gravity is 1.017, down from 1.047, for 3.9% abv. I added the dry hops (weighted down with two stainless steel washers–I note that three would probably be advisable, as the bag didn’t really sink as much as I’d hoped!). I’ll be force carbonating, and hopefully can let it go at least a week before tapping.
For my last brew of 2015, I’m making a session IPA that is a modest departure from my previous session IPA. This is primarily to adjust for and use up ingredients on-hand, but also in order to try out a new yeast strain with some promise for session beers (“Conan”). I used WLP002 (English ale) for my last session IPAs, and liked it, but thought that the potentially low attenuation of Conan also has promise for a session IPA. We’ll see how it works!
The other twist on this brew is that I’m using Jarrylo hops, a relatively new variety. They’re not particularly intended for IPAs, but an IPA seems like a good way to showcase hop character, particularly in the late additions and dry-hop. Because Jarrylo is described as having notes of banana, pear, and spice, I figured some more citrusy/fruity varieties would meld well for the bittering and flavor hops additions. So, Citra and Mosaic are also in the mix. When smelling the Jarrylo hops pellets, I get a fair bit of pepper and maybe some fruitiness behind that. Perhaps it’s a mistake to dry hop with this one for an IPA, but that’s what homebrewing is all about!
Jarrylo Session IPA
- 5.25 lbs. 2-row malt (Great Western Malting Co.)
- 3.75 lbs. Borlander Munich Malt (Briess)
- 0.5 lbs. caramel Munich 60L (Briess)
- 1 oz. Citra hops pellets (13.2% alpha), 15 minute boil
- 1 oz. Mosaic hops pellets (12.8% alpha), 10 minute boil
- 2 oz. Jarrylo hops pellets (14.2% alpha), 2 minute boil
- 2 oz. Jarrylo hops pellets (14.2% alpha), 2 week dry hop
- 1 pkg. Vermont Ale (“Conan”) yeast, The Yeast Bay (prepared in 1L starter)
- 1 tsp. Irish moss (10 minute boil)
- I mashed in with 3.75 gallons of water at 169.8°, to hit a mash temperature of 156°. The mash was down to 153.5° after 25 minutes and 150° after 45 minutes. After 50 minutes, I added 1.1 gallons of water at 190°, to raise the mash temperature to 156°. I elected to use a shortened mash procedure in order to add a tiny extra bit of body to the final beer (per the session beer workshop I went to at AHC). So, only 60 minutes passed between when I mashed in and when I collected the first runnings.
- I vorlaufed and collected the first runnings, and added 3.75 gallons of water at 179°, which raised the mash bed to 166°. I let it sit for 10 minutes, vorlaufed, and collected the remainder of the wort.
- I collected a total of 6.9 gallons of wort with a gravity of 1.037. This equates to an extract efficiency of ~75%.
- I started the boil, and added the hops per the schedule above.
- After 60 minutes of boiling, I turned off the heat and chilled the wort to 70°. Then, I pitched the yeast and set the beer to fermenting, at 68°. I brewed this batch on 30 December 2015. Starting gravity was 1.047.
- Note on the yeast starter: Because I am liking the Conan strain, I overbuilt my starter. I made 1.6 L of a 1.040 gravity, and set aside 0.6 L for my next batch (~100 billion cells, approximately).
After 5 weeks in the keg, it’s a good time to formally taste my latest session IPA! Overall, it seems like I’m about one iteration away from the “house recipe.”
Seven Seas Session IPA
- The Basics
- Original gravity = 1.052; final gravity = 1.018; abv = 4.3%; estimated IBU = 50.
- Very persistent ivory head with a little bit of lacing on the glass; it starts quite high, and lowers a bit as I drink the beer, but never disappears. The beer itself is a rich gold with a slight haze.
- A strong but not overwhelming pine and grapefruit dominate. I don’t pick up much in the way of malt (except towards the end of the glass, when the beer is warmed up a notch).
- The malt is in the background on this one, but definitely there. It supports a prominent bitterness from the hops, which is quite pleasant at the forefront but fades perhaps a little more harshly on the finish than I care for. In other words, the bitterness sticks around.
- The body is just about perfect on this one; moderate, but not overly thin or overly chewy. Carbonation is moderate and on-point for an IPA.
- Would I brew this again?
- Yes, with only slight modification. The appearance, aroma, and mouthfeel are exactly perfect for me, so I wouldn’t change the malt bill, mashing schedule, yeast, or dry-hopping. The only minor issue that I would care to fix would be to tone back the nature of the bitterness a bit; something a little more subtle might be nice. It’s not bad in this way (as discussed at my homebrew club when I brought it), just slightly outside my personal preference. So, I would probably change up the bittering hops for this recipe; dial them back just a touch, and aim for something with a smoother bittering profile (?Cascade). The beer is definitely a big step closer to my house session IPA recipe. Once I get the bittering hops figured out, I think the recipe is set!
- Overall rating
On Falconer’s Flight 7C’s: I quite like this hop blend. It basically says “West Coast IPA.” And despite the slight shortcomings for the bittering profile in this particular recipe, I think it would be fine for bittering in a bigger beer (i.e., a standard strength IPA). It’s just a _touch_ much for a session IPA.
After 5 days in the primary fermenter, the Seven Seas Session IPA appeared to have finished up fermenting. So, I raised the temperature from 65°to 70°, to help things clean up a bit. After a total of eight days in the primary fermenter, I kegged the beer and added the dry hops (August 30, 2015). The yield was a full five gallons. Final gravity was 1.018, down from 1.052, which works out to 4.3% abv. The beer has a great flavor, with a definite hops character. Both the level of bitterness (higher than my last session IPA) as well as the body (more full than the last version) are greatly improved. I plan to let this dry-hop at room temperature for at least a week before carbonating and cold-conditioning.
As an experiment for my upcoming brew (titled “Packrat Porter”), I’m washing and reusing my yeast. More on that in the next post!
My first real attempt at a session IPA was adequate, but needed some work. So, I’ve tuned up the malt and hop bill a bit in order to bolster the brew all around. The result: Seven Seas Session IPA. The name is a bad pun on the hops variety, Falconer’s Flight 7C’s.
Seven Seas Session IPA
- 7.5 lbs. 2-row malt (Great Western Malting Co.)
- 1.25 lbs. 10° Munich malt
- 1 lb. white wheat malt
- 0.5 lb. crystal 60° malt
- 0.5 lb. crystal 15° malt
- 1 tbs. 5.2 pH stabilizer
- 1 oz. Falconer’s Flight 7C’s Blend hops pellets (10.3% alpha, 4.9% beta), 15 minute boil
- 2 oz. Falconer’s Flight 7C’s Blend hops pellets (10.3% alpha, 4.9% beta), 10 minute boil
- 1 oz. Falconer’s Flight 7C’s Blend hops pellets (10.3% alpha, 4.9% beta), 5 minute boil
- 1 Whirlfloc tablet (10 minute boil)
- 1 pkg. English Ale Yeast (WLP002), prepared in 1 liter starter, 12 hours in advance
- 2 oz. Falconer’s Flight 7C’s Blend hops pellets (10.3% alpha, 4.9% beta), 14 day dry hop
- I mashed in with 16.75 quarts of water at 170°, to hit a mash temperature of 159.7° at the start. After 10 minutes, the mash was at 159.5°, 157.6° after 45 minutes, and 154.5° after 60 minutes.
- I added 0.8 gallons of water at 210°, which raised the mash temperature to 160°. I let it sit for 10 minutes, vorlaufed, and collected 3.25 gallons of wort. Then, I added 3.8 gallons of water at 185°, which raised the mash temperature to 168°. This was then vorlaufed after 10 minutes at the remainder of the wort was collected.
- All together, I collected 6.75 gallons of wort at a gravity of 1.043. This works out to 74% efficiency.
- I brought the wort to a boil, and added the first ounce of hops at 45 minutes, two more ounces at 50 minutes (along with a Whirlfloc tablet), and the final ounce of hops at 55 minutes.
- After 60 minutes of boiling, I turned off the flame and chilled the wort as much as I could. Given the high temperatures (and the warm-ish tap water), I was only able to chill down to about 90°. I transferred the wort into the fermenter, and then set it to chill in the fermentation chamber. Once I reached 70° (after about 3 hours), I pitched the yeast. I started fermentation at 68°, and will drop the temperature to 65° once visible fermentation was under way (persumably within a few hours).
- In the end, I had 5.25 gallons of wort at a gravity of 1.052. I plan to ferment for at least 10 days before dry hopping.