Saturday, May 14, 2011

Elli’s Extra Resin-y IPA Brewday

So my instructions for the hop profile on this beer were as follows: “I want it to be bitter and herbal with a lot of pine and resin. Actually make it extra-resin-y.” When I asked about the aroma, I was told “Never mind about the aroma. Worry about the extra-resin-y.” We then discussed and chose hop types, where I was given another “extra-resin-y” reminder. So here it is, extra resin-y and all. Rock on.

89. Elli’s Extra Resin-y IPA
6 lbs. Maris Otter
6 lbs. Pilsen
1 lb. Breiss Victory
1 lb. Dingemans Cara 20° (CaraVienna)
½ lb. Breiss Caramel 120°
½ lb. Dingemans Biscuit Malt

Mashed @ 152° F (150° F actual) for 65 minutes w/ 4 ½ gallons of RO water (167° F)
Batch sparged @ 168° F (166° F actual) for 20 minutes w/4 gallons of RO water (181° F)

Collected 6 ¾ gallons; added to brew kettle, brought to a boil (65 minutes) and added:
w/60 to go:
7 g. gypsum
1 oz. Magnum pellet 10.0% AA
1 oz. Millennium leaf 16.6% AA

w/15 minutes to go:
1 tsp. Irish Moss
1 oz. Simcoe leaf 14.1% AA

w/10 to go:
1 oz. Chinook leaf 11.9% AA

w/5 minutes to go:
1 oz. Centennial leaf 11.5% AA

w/0 minutes to go:
1 oz. Amarillo leaf 10.7% AA

Chilled with wort chiller to 68° F, racked to carboy on Wyeast 1332 Northwest Ale cake from 88. Willamette Pale Ale

Brewed: 5/13/2011 @ 68° F
Secondary: 6/3/2011 @ 1.014; dry-hopped w/ 1 oz. Chinook 11.9% AA on 6/5/2011
Bottled: 6/15/2011 w/ 3.55 oz. table sugar @ 68° F

OG: 1.062
FG: 1.011

Tasting Notes: Elli’s Extra Resin-y IPA pours a rich caramel copper. And, as the picture clearly indicates, it has a profuse and abundant tan-colored head—it is thick and got a good inch over the top of the glass before it found any sort of stasis. The nose is heavy on the spicy and evergreen side of things: if this beer was an open-mike rap battle, the lyrical skills of Chinook and Simcoe have made mince meat of Centennial and Amarillo while Magnum and Millennium look on. In addition, the nose has bread and biscuit malt character than slightly clashes with the hop and spicy hop aromas; this initial aromatic presence plays out in flavor profile as well. The opening evergreen, pine, and spicy hop flavors clash with the sourdough and breadiness of the Victory malt in the front of the beer—there is almost a slight sweet rye spiciness created in the confrontation of flavors that further throws things off, even though there is no rye anywhere near this beer. The middle has a dry biscuit malt flavor mixed with a clean, bracing bitterness; again, not the perfect mix, but better than the initial combination. The finish is slightly tacky and dry on the tongue, although the big lingering is effective. The overall body is too dry—there is a slight touch of alcohol warmth along with the bitterness, but the biscuit and sourdough emphasize flatter, drier flavors on the palate, leaving a husky or grainy impression. The caramel malt (both the 20° and 120°) have disappeared in the beer; while the Pilsen and Maris Otter should leave this beer lighter in body and thus a perfect vehicle for some residual caramel malt flavor, the combination with the other specialty grains creates a dark grain character that seems to dampen all of the interesting hop nuances that could have been created in the beer. I’m left with something of a Lysol-esque hop character—i.e. heavy on the evergreen—which clashes with the dry biscuit and bread character of the malt. Oh well—you live and you learn. Elli, I’m sorry the beer we made for you was something of a disappointment. The good news is that we can try it again.

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