brew day: Inevitable Conclusion Double IPA

Oh no, my hops are out.

(video is NSFW, and not likely to make sense if you’ve never rolled a D20)

Be aggressive – no subtlety, only immediacy. I’m making as much as I think me and my Humulovore compatriots can polish off while there’s still enough myrcene in it to clog a sinus. Base malt only – say hi to your C60 for me, aiight? Capricious mash hopping, waxy drops of hop extract, one big late addition for 83% or so of the total IBUs, a dry hop supernova. Those third-gen 1217 cells had to have known this batch was coming for a while – that it was their only way out.

Inevitable Conclusion
Target OG: 1.078

Grist:

  • 100% Maris Otter

Mash:

  • 152°F for 75 minutes, 170°F for 10 minutes
  • Mosaic – mash hop during the sacch’ rest at a rate of 7 grams/gallon of mash volume (or, for my friends with metric – roughly 1.75 grams per liter … I’m trying)

Boil:

  • Hop extract at 60′ to 12 IBU
  • Blend of Citra, Galaxy, Simcoe, and EXP 5256 at 5′ to a collective 60 IBU

Fermentation:

  • Chill to 65°F, O2, and pitch with Wyeast 1217 harvested from previous batch
  • At near-complete attenuation, dry hop with a blend of Galaxy, Simcoe, and EXP 5256 at a total rate of 28 grams/gallon (or, for my friends with metric – roughly 7 grams per liter … I’m trying)
  • Fine, rack, crash cool, carb, get murderous on purpose.
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34 thoughts on “brew day: Inevitable Conclusion Double IPA

    • As I understand it, the theory behind it is similar to that for first-wort hopping – relatively low pH and high-gravity wort environment leads to hop oils binding to proteins, which prevents them from being volatilized out during the boil – but with a much, much lower alpha acid utilization.

      Honestly, this was a game-day decision as I was gathering up the rest of the hops from the freezer, saw the last bit of Mosaic, and thought “why not?”

      I think the main benefit of mash-hopping an IPA is to be able to say you did it
      (during the boil, the wort did have a definite, distinct tropical-fruit flavor mixed in with the Maris Otter character – whether it’ll remain discernible through the hopbursting and dry hopping is admittedly questionable), but it’s certainly got less frivolous applications in styles like Berliner Weisse or Grodziskie, where you want some hop acids for preservation, but only single-digit IBUs and little to no hop character.

  1. Hop extract minimizes the vegetal, which I see, but I never found a mash hop to add anything significant … Are you shooting for oxidizing those hops, so the oils are then less volatile in the boil? I’m not sciencey enough to know the thought process on that one.

    • As I understand it, the theory behind it is similar to that for first-wort hopping – relatively low pH and high-gravity wort environment leads to hop oils binding to proteins, which prevents them from being volatilized out during the boil – but with a much, much lower alpha acid utilization.

      Honestly, this was a game-day decision as I was gathering up the rest of the hops from the freezer, saw the last bit of Mosaic, and thought “why not?”

      FWIW, the wort did have a definite, distinct tropical-fruit flavor mixed in with the Maris Otter character, right up until the 5 minute addition – whether it’ll remain discernible through the hopbursting and dry hopping is admittedly questionable. I once heard Nathan Smith remark that it’s not a West Coast IPA if you’re not wasting hops – and I think the main benefit of mash-hopping an IPA is to be able to say you did it.

  2. Can you explain how you calculate your hop extract additions? From what I’ve read, 5ml of hop extract replaces 1oz of a 10% AA hop. Do you find this to be accurate?

    • Not if you go by this: http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/hopshot.html
      … which is the formula I use, and it makes sense to me: just as with any hop addition, utilization of the extract would be on a sliding scale dependent on boil time and wort gravity. Plus, the extract is highly concentrated – pretty much pure oils and acids, whereas an ounce of even a very high-alpha variety, will still have a very large percentage of insoluble, flavor-and bitterness-inactive organic matter.

  3. “At near complete attenuation”
    How very Firestone Walker of you. I like the idea of yeast doing chemistry on those essential oils. It adds a new variable to the hops equation.

    • I read books, as I remind my wife all the time. As with the mash hopping in this batch, or the perception event horizon for 100+ IBU beers, I am not sure how discernible those effects will be at 8% abv and lots of late hopping. But I like to imagine something’s going on in there.

      • IIRC, some of hop-derived terpenes are oxidized/oxygenated/oxidatively metabolized by yeast. Two points, albeit rampant speculation:
        1. Statistically speaking, at least one of those new, unnatural compounds has to have a low flavor threshold; hopefully in a good way, too. We’re talking about a dog’s dinner of hop-derived hydrocarbons entering the yeast’s standard metabolic pathways.
        2. This chemistry has to be strain dependent, too. Think ferulic acid chemistry and POF(+\-) yeasts.
        There’s so much to be discovered, and arguably that has to be done via trial and error. Happy brewing!

  4. I personally struggle with getting the hop matter out when dry hopping and end up with some floating hops for the first quarter of a keg. Any tips on better dealing with this? I am hoping to avoid filtering based on the equipment I have on hand.

    I haven’t posted before but love the blog. Had great success with the boat bitter (subbed in Northern Brewer and EKG as first gold was unavailable) and look forward to scaling up for an English IPA as well.

    • “Brewing is a system of compromises” is a line I came across in a Hieronymous book last week, and it certainly fits for dry hopping vs. clear beer. I use a combo of finings (Biofine has been my jam this year) and deliberately overshooting volume (collect an extra 1-2 gallons at target OG so I still get full kegs after leaving the thickest hop slurry behind and/or volume loss to whole hops). Depending on where you come down on dry hopping with pellets vs. dry hopping with whole hops, whole hops may end up absorbing more beer but are much easier to separate (if bagged).

  5. MD,
    How long was this in primary before you dry hopped and how long do you leave your dry hops in contact with the beer? I’ve been lowering my total dry hop time from 7-10 days to 4-5 days lately and find it’s working better for my system.

    • At the time of this writing, I actually have yet to add them – will probably dose it tomorrow or the next day (7-8 days from brew day). I also plan to keep the contact fairly short this time around. It’s interesting to hear how folks fine-tune based on their preferences and systems – definitely not a one-size-fits-all process, is it?

      • No it’s defintely not. There must be a myriad of variations between one setup and another. You may have fermenters that are shaped differently than mine, let your carboy sit on a colder basement floor than mine during the DH, etc. The more I’ve brewed, the more I’ve learned to brew a recipe how it’s written the first time and then start tweaking from there.

  6. Hey Dawson, in the Chop and Brew video you mention one of your beers with 1217 probably got up to 74 during fermentation. I had a fermentation get a little out of control and I probably hit somewhere around 74 as well. Did you find any noticeable effects of fermenting at a slightly high temp with 1217?

    • Not that I could tell. They were all pitched in the upper half of the 60s, so the rise would have been somewhere around day 2 or 3 of active fermentation, and so wouldn’t/shouldn’t have impacted the ester profile too much. 74F is the stated ceiling, so if I had to guess yours should be fine as well. Cheers!

  7. Pingback: 59. Far South Double IPA | the beer minimum.

  8. Pingback: TMBR: Inevitable Conclusion Double IPA | the beer engine

  9. Hi MD,
    When you fine your beers, how do you adjust your recipes accordingly? If it’s a hoppy beer such as this DIPA, do you had more hops to the late additions only or do you bump up bittering as well? Is there some sort of science behind it or is it all tweaking to taste? Prost!

    • Thanks for the question, Adam!

      Like you got at, actual bitterness can be lost as hop isomers get dragged down with flocc’ing yeast; unless the beer is coming from a brewery that runs lab analysis on every batch, I think you have to consider any delivered-to-glass IBU level as at least somewhat nominal (especially for homebrew). But even breweries with extensive lab programs still rely on tasting panels …

      So to give an answer, I just let it ride. It’s an aesthetic decision and a compromise, but I don’t think the loss of hop character is significant (on my system, anyway), or outweighs my personal desire for clearer beer. I’d argue that it’s more important (and easier and cheaper) to be thoroughly familiar with your system – e.g., “The software says this recipe is 60 IBUs, and this is what 60 IBUs-as-calculated-by-the-software tastes like in this recipe as brewed with my equipment” or “This is what x grams of dry hops/gallon tastes like in this recipe after going through my fermentation regimen” – than to worry too much about replacing absolute IBUs.

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