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Monday, September 26, 2011

Scott's BIG IPL w/Citra

Well here it is, for the first time ever in one place, the full recipe and story behind Scott's BIG IPL.  Well, sort of anyway...

I've brewed this beer three times now (four if you count my brewday with Karl Strauss), each time I do there is a slight change here and there to the recipe.  

Recipe sheet
Batch 1

The first time I brewed it was for a demo at Addison Homebrew Provisions.  It was an adaption of my Scott's BIG IPA recipe that had recently won the store's competition.  The main hop bill was the same but the malt bill was modified greatly to play off the lager aspect adding plisner DME and rice DME.  I was inspired to brew this beer after having a pint of Humulus Lager at the Bruery several weeks prior to the demo.  Not only was this beer my inspiration of doing a lager IPA but is also the origin of the rice addition. 

When it came time for the demo I got distracted and combined a couple of additions and missed a time here and there, but this is the reason you should always notes and I wrote down and tracked all these modifications.  This is also the reason that only people who were at the demo and tracked these changes would have the recipe to that point.  

Final changes to batch one against the recipe came with a second dry hopping into tertiary.  There is a lot of good information out there when to how long to keep hops on a beer and because this is a lager it takes longer and I grew concerned that I would start to get off flavors so I decided to move it a tertiary with even more hops.  

Some of the water agents used
I fortunately keep the progress of this beer updated on the AHP forum which worked out very well for me as later I needed to track the progress and write down when I did things.  

Batch 1 came out incredible and we flew through the keg, in fact I was shocked how quickly I went through 5 gallons of wonderfully hopped lager.  I think it might be Bonnie's favorite of my beers as she was constantly sneaking out to get some.

Batch 2

With an empty keg on my hand and a cool winter in place I decided in January of 2011 it was time to brew it again.  I went back and forth with whether I would brew this beer a my next brewing demo in mid January or do it at a club brewday the week prior.  In the end I opted to do it at the brewday and do up a batch of Smoked Pepper Porter at the demo to be served at the club booth at the SCHF 2011.

I went back to my notes and review my posts on the forum to create batch 2 of the recipe.

The mash
As much as I like brewing with people and hosting brewdays i really hate doing both at the same time.  For the most part everything went well, despite a boil over.  I also picked up a couple of cool new tricks and once my beer was safely tucked away in my fermenting cube I was able to relax, grill up some sausages and have a great time.

It was early on in the fermentation cycle that I noticed a post on facebook about Karl Strauss holding a contest where the winner would get a chance to brew their beer that the main brewery and have it entered in the Pro-Am competition at the NHC 2011 in San Diego.  Having been a fan of Karl Strauss in the past I decided I wanted to enter, the question was what.  I knew I had enough time to to an IPA but sorta wanted to enter the still fermenting IPL.  As fun as lagers are and how good the results are they're not the type of beer one can rush.  Still I thought it would be a good beer to enter but would it be done in time.

153 for 1 hour
There was only one way to answer that, a timeline.  I cut up a couple of calendars and mapped out the cycle for the original batch, I then took another calendar and starting with the brewday transferred all the milestones from the first batch calendar to the second one.  I also marked the deadline for the Karl Strauss competition.  As luck would have it the IPL would be finished and kegged just in time to BeerGun and enter.  

As some know I did enter it and ended up winning it.

Batch 2ish the Karl Strauss Version

I guess I ended up brewing it again between Batch 2 and the latest Batch 3 with Karl Strauss, however this was not my recipe but rather their take on it.  

I'm not going to go into much detail on it, but if you are interested you can review the full story on the AHP forum here and here.

I will say this, in retrospect I have a few issues with their version of the recipe that I'll quickly sum up; no pilsner malt, not enough rice and too few hops.  I also feel that fermentation might have been rushed as it didn't have the same lager crispness as the original.

Still it was a very well done beer that went over well.  It scored ok on BeerAdvocate scoring mostly A's except for one guy who even admits it he might have gotten a bad pour.

Batch 3

Brewing up this beer again had been on my mind for awhile, but with a 15 gallon keg of the Karl Strauss version in the Crate I was in no big rush.  The two month brewing hiatus also didn't help and I was soon running low on beer. I have big plans for the beer in 2012 and felt that time was running out to make and test changes to the recipe.  It is after all a 10 week batch cycle for this beer.

I had in stock or had access to all the key hops I would need for this beer with the exception of Amarillo. I decide to play around with the recipe and substitute the Amarillo with Citra, one of my favorite hops.  I also wanted to incorporate it into a flavor addition and I didn't want to just add it and change the IBUs so I adjusted some of the other hops to keep everything in line.

The biggest change I made was skipping moving the recipe to Partial Mash and going all out and converting it to All Grain.  Good idea? Bad idea? I'm always telling people there is no reason to rush the process until you are ready to make the jump to the next step, yet here I am with only 5 Partial Mash and 1 All Grain under my belt taking the recipe for my best known beer and converting it up.  In retrospect I really haven't decided either way.  I know I have a lot still to learn on water and steps to increase my efficiency but it was fun.

My mom stirring the mash during the sparge
The brewday itself was pretty good.  I got an early start with preheating my tun and setup complete around 7:30 am. My mom was in town so she helped off and on in between helping my wife out with our daughter.  Originally I was going to opt for a shorter mash after having had a conversation with Brad that for the most part conversion occurs around 20 minutes due to increased efficiencies in the malting process of the grains.  I ended up mashing for over an hour as I decided to take my daughter and BrewDog for a walk to the park for a game of chuck it and fun on the slides.

Hop lineup
I was pretty off on my gravity so I need to do some additional research on steps to improve it. Other than that it went pretty well, I did apparently buy a pound of light DME instead of a pound of rice DME so I sent my wife over the shop to grab it while I sparged.  In retrospect I should have tossed it in to make up for the lower gravity.   I hit all my hop marks and was down cleaning up in time for a late lunch.   

Given the time involved and the house demand for it I'll probably only have this available at the brewery.  I'll plan a release tasting sometime in December if it comes out good.



First Wort Hops
Scott's BIG IPL w/Citra
Double IPL
Type: All Grain 
Date: 9/18/2011
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.00 gal 
Brewer: Scott Bennett
Boil Size: 7.65 gal 
Asst Brewer: Marianne Bennett and DG (BrewDog)
Boil Time: 75 min 
Equipment: Brew Pot (15 Gal) and Igloo/Gott Cooler (10 Gal)
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 % - ended up much lower at 60.3%
Fermentation: Scott's IPL Lager 

Beer Profile
Est Original Gravity: 1.082 SG 
Measured Original Gravity: 1.071 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.017 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 8.7 % 
Bitterness: 108.5 IBUs
Est Color: 6.7 SRM 


8 lbs Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (2.0 SRM)
4 lbs 12.8 oz Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM)
1 lbs Rice DME (7.0 SRM)
8.0 oz Victory Malt (25.0 SRM)
8.0 oz Caramel/Crystal Malt - 15L (15.0 SRM)
8.0 oz Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM)

0.70 oz Columbus (Tomahawk) [14.00 %] - First Wort 60.0 min
0.70 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] - First Wort 60.0 min 
0.75 oz Citra [12.00 %] - Boil 17.0 min
0.75 oz Centennial [10.00 %] - Boil 17.0 min
0.75 oz Simcoe [13.00 %] - Boil 17.0 min
17 minute addition
0.70 oz Columbus (Tomahawk) [14.00 %] - Boil 7.0 mi
0.75 oz Centennial [10.00 %] - Boil 5.0 mi
1.00 oz Citra [12.00 %] - Boil 0.0 min

Dry Hops
1.00 oz Columbus (1st Dry Hop) [14.00 %]
1.00 oz Cascade (1st Dry Hop) [5.50 %]
1.00 oz Citra (2nd Dry Hop) [12.00 %]
1.00 oz Simcoe (2nd Dry Hop) [13.00 %]

1.0 pkg American Lager Yeast (White Labs #WLP840)

1.00 tbsp PH 5.2 Stabilizer (Mash 60.0 mins)
10.00 g Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) (Mash 60.0 mins)
5.00 g Calcium Chloride (Mash 60.0 mins)
1.00 Items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins)
1.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Boil 15.0 mins)

7 minute addition
Mash Profile

Mash Name: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 15 lbs 4.8 oz
Sparge Water: 5.52 gal
Sparge Temperature: 168.0 F
Mash PH: 5.20

Mash Steps
Mash In Add 18.59 qt of water at 164.3 F 153.0 F 60 min
Sparge Step: Batch sparge with 2 steps (1.29gal, 4.22gal) of 168.0 F water

Fermentation Schedule

Primary for 10-12 days at 55.0 F until fermentation slows
Diacetyl Rest for 2 days at 65.0 F
Secondary for 14 days at 50.0 F ending at 45.0 F
Tertiary for 21 days at 45.0 F ending at 40.0 F


Cooling down
Moving to the fermentor
Leftover hot break and spent hops
Good amount of yeast
I hit it with O2 three times in 6 hours

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