Sunday, July 19, 2009

Fresh hops

Update 8/8 - racked to secondary, SG 1.009-1.010, 2oz centennial, 2oz simcoe added.
Update 8/4 - SG 1.010, 2oz Cascade pellets added. Temperature no longer controlled.

Two things. I owe Rachel a big IPA because she likes them a lot and I keep adding to the equipment list (post on that fermentation cabinet on its way). Now, before you read the recipe and crunch some numbers to find that you get something like 200IBU, let me yammer on a bit about hops and isomerization. First, I'm using a whole pound of fresh hops. Fresh, as in I picked them from someone's garden yesterday and they haven't been dried. Like herbs in cooking, fresh hops are less potent than dry ones, and ~8oz of fresh hop flowers dry to about 3oz. To compensate, I'm approximating the AA in my calculations as 3% instead of 7-10%. Second, all (ALL) of the models for calculating IBU fall apart at high concentrations of alpha acid in the wort. I could link to some papers but you won't read them...hell, I barely did. The point: it's hard to get more than about 120IBU short of using isoalpha extract. Example, running the numbers on the recipe(s) for Pliny the Elder that Vinnie Cilurzo has published (Zymurgy, Brew Your Own, AHA conference,...) the Rager or Tinseth (Palmer uses Tinseth in How to Brew) methods will give you something like 150-250IBU, and labs that actually measure these things find 95-99 IBU (it is a measurable characteristic of beer). [/geek]

Second, as you may have gleaned from the previous paragraph, I picked a pound of fresh hops yesterday! It was a lot of fun, and the guy who grew the plants is from Minnetonka, so, that's cool. Fresh hops are a bit sticky, and the resin gets all over your fingers. I do not advise chewing on the hops. They taste like lettuce, and then like the most bitter thing you've ever eaten.

Batch #40
Fresh Hop DIPA
--12.5lbs 2-row (RAHR)
--0.5lb Amer. Munich
--0.5lb Crystal 40L
--0.5lb CaraPils
--1lb table sugar as syrup (late kraüsen)
--4oz Cascade, wet, (FWH)
--2oz Magnum 14.3%AA (60min)
--1oz Centennial 8%AA (45min)
--2oz Cascade, wet, (30min)
--1oz Centennial 8%AA (20min)
--2oz Cascade, wet, (15min)
--2oz Cascade, wet, (10min)
--1oz Centennial 8%AA, (7min)
--2oz Cascade, wet, (5min)
--2oz Cascade, wet, (2min)
--1oz Centennial 8%AA (1min)
--2oz Cascade, wet, (Flameout)
--2oz Cascade pellets (dry)
--2oz Centennial pellets (dry)
--2oz Simcoe pellets (dry)
--1/4tsp supermoss (15min)
--1/4tsp gypsum (mash water addition)
--WLP001 California Ale Yeast, 2L starter (2nd generation).
OG: 1.063 (1.071 effective)
FG: 1.010
ABV: ~8%
IBU: ~100+

Mash in at 149F, hold between 145 and 149 for 90minutes. Batch sparge to collect 7 gallons wort. Add hops as listed. Ferment at 68F...more details to come (such as how I added the dry hops, 2ndary temp, crashing, etc). Other useful advice: don't break your mill with 3lbs of malt left to go, make sure you know whether or not you've previously made plans for brew day, and use fresh yeast or you'll worry about the damn starter all day.

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