Something like an APA

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HTH1975
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by HTH1975 » Sun Oct 21, 2018 10:07 pm

Kev888 wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 11:43 am
... TBH I'm beginning to get slightly jaded with very hop-dominant pale beers at the mo, especially the overtly citrus-like types. They seem to be everywhere and I'm starting to miss the malt flavours. This is an attempt (yet to be judged) to achieve more of a balance between the two (the other pre-christmas brews will be darker styles).
I know where you’re coming from - it can be difficult to get anything other than American-style pale ales these days. If you want an IPA that is in a traditional English style then you’re in for a challenge.

With the amount of centennial and cascade you have in dry hops you might find you will get that overtly citrus flavour. The mix of cascade and willamette you have in the other additions would have been a better approach imo if you want more of a balanced approach between US and UK style pale ale.

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Re: Something like an APA

Post by sbond10 » Mon Oct 22, 2018 6:25 am

Kev888 wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 9:02 pm
In theory the CFC doesn't get dirty again during storage, so it just needs disinfecting on brew day (in my case using boiling wort during the boil). In practice I can't fully dry the CFC after use, so potentially something could grow in the moisture during storage. But if so then it seems to be nothing the boiling wort can't deal with satisfactorily.

Were it stainless then I might be tempted to run peracetic acid or iodophore through it beforehand, or were it small and robust enough to be autoclaved then I'd do so. Unfortunately it isn't, and that did worry me for a while. But the boiling wort has always been enough, so I'm far more relaxed about it these days.
Thanks for taking the time to reply I think I'll adopt this approach. Currently using dish washer tabs to clean through in reverse witch appears to be working.

Hope your beer comes out ok and not to citrusty

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Re: Something like an APA

Post by Kev888 » Mon Oct 22, 2018 11:16 am

No worries. Dishwasher tablets are pretty good, I know a few people who use them quite a bit these days and some tests of my own have also gone well; they clean well without creating too much foam or gas for the pump to deal with. Supposedly their rinse aids can linger and reduce head retention, but I don't think this is a significant problem in most uses.
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by Kev888 » Mon Oct 22, 2018 11:17 am

HTH1975 wrote:
Sun Oct 21, 2018 10:07 pm
I know where you’re coming from - it can be difficult to get anything other than American-style pale ales these days. If you want an IPA that is in a traditional English style then you’re in for a challenge.

With the amount of centennial and cascade you have in dry hops you might find you will get that overtly citrus flavour. The mix of cascade and willamette you have in the other additions would have been a better approach imo if you want more of a balanced approach between US and UK style pale ale.
Yes you're right, the varieties could have been better chosen with that in mind. Hopefully it will work within itself though; aside from the current glut of this style I don't actually object to it as such, what I really dislike are examples in which the hops are mainly all there is to the beer - sometimes through heavy handedness but usually because the underlying beer is just bland and mediocre.

I have risked that to a degree by testing a clean and fairly high attenuating style of yeast, but hopefully the choice of grains and the high mash temperature will combine to leave enough body and malt-derived flavour to balance. Time will tell!
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by MTW » Mon Oct 22, 2018 12:31 pm

For all my brief input above, I have a friend who has far more success with 'hop bombs' than I do, so I just drink some of his when we meet once a month! That's enough of that for me, nowadays. I much prefer to develop other flavours in my own brews, most of the time. FWIW, when I do enjoy a hop bomb, I don't need much else going on in the beer and I'm happy for it to be inherently unbalanced. But a little goes a long way.
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Kev888
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by Kev888 » Mon Oct 22, 2018 4:05 pm

Yeah, huge hop bombs are so single-mindedly extreme as to be almost a special case, in my head. Viewed as such, they're okay once in a while; they aren't what I personally think of when I want beer, but at least they aren't insipid.

More normal, modestly hoppy pales don't have that to fall back on, so IMO need a well made beer behind them. This is more where my bugbear lies: bunging lots of late hops into bland beer doesn't make up the missing dimensions, whilst well made ones can be 'far' better for not really much more cost or effort.

Though even so, the increasing lack of much else in many establishments worries me. There can be loads of taps, all offering different hoppy American pales (even if sometimes called IPAs) or even paler lagers; yet not one decent British style like bitter, porter, stout, mild etc. Sometimes you think there is one, and it turns out to be a dark APA!
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by charliemartin » Tue Oct 23, 2018 8:37 am

I must agree with you on the lack of British style ales on offer these days. I don't mind hoppy American style pales and IPAs, but I would much rather session on a good English bitter or Scottish 70 or 80/- ale.
Perhaps these hoppy styles are just easier to brew and perceived as what the customer wants these days due to the "craft beer" movement.


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Re: Something like an APA

Post by HTH1975 » Tue Oct 23, 2018 5:14 pm

My personal bugbear is when I get a dark beer and expect a fairly traditional beer, but it’s crammed full of citrusy hops. Roasty beers and citrus just don’t work for me.

Old Scottish styles like 60/70/80 Shilling are even rarer to find, and forget trying to get a mild.

A couple of weeks ago I was in the pub and they had a black smoked Kölsch - why oh why!!!

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Re: Something like an APA

Post by charliemartin » Tue Oct 23, 2018 7:19 pm


HTH1975 wrote: A couple of weeks ago I was in the pub and they had a black smoked Kölsch - why oh why!!!
Black smoked Kölsch!!!! Image

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Re: Something like an APA

Post by Kev888 » Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:48 pm

Hmm, each to their own I suppose!

In the interests of balance (against my own moaning!) for the current brew, I'll just clarify that I do like APAs provided they're well made - and not trying 'too' hard to taste like grapefruit instead of beer. Its just a pity that fashion or whatever seems to have caused a monotonous glut that is somewhat neglecting most other styles at the moment, including those of our own nations. But obviously, as a homebrewer I can avoid such bias and this is just one brew of many, so no such worries here.

Anyway, as mentioned I'm trying some of the dry hops much earlier than normal: at 24hrs after pitching. The first difference I notice is that the pellets have a tendency to be lifted up on the krausen and quite a lot also then form a ring around the FV walls - somewhat above the wort, which you can possibly make out here:
Image
It isn't difficult to stir them back in occasionally, but maybe whole/flower hops or a weighted hop bag may be better if not around to do so very frequently.

There is also (not unexpectedly) a lot of aroma being given off, which smells nice but which I'd prefer to remain in the beer. Hopefully magic biotransformations will be doing something to offset this, but it will be some time before I can tell what the results are.
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by Kev888 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:14 pm

Just a minor update: The gravity stabilised, two days apart, at about 1.013 - making the ABV about 5% and the attenuation about 75%. This is good news, as it suggests the extra munich and warm mash managed to restrain the M44 (west coast) yeast as hoped. So, theres a decent amount of body and malt flavour going on, which is pleasing.
Image
The second instalment of dry hops were added, at FG. They were allowed three days at 20c, and then chilling was begun to help the FV drop clearer before kegging.

As mentioned, this is my first experience of the M44 yeast and they largely did what they said on the packet. They are allowing the hops through and I'm pleased to say aren't particularly suppressing the malts so a good result on that score. Functionally speaking they worked okay: no great lag, took a normal amount of time to finish, didn't make an inconveniently large krausen, responded to mash temperature, and seem to be dropping clear adequately (though not spectacularly). But the yeast themselves haven't contributed much flavour that I can detect, so (for me) the wider applications are going to be limited. This brew could probably have benefited from a bit more IMO, though it does still work.
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by MTW » Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:53 pm

Sounds like it's gone to plan. From the colour, I can't imagine it lacking flavour, but I guess that getting your perfect balance of hops, malt and yeast esters may take another go or two. If it's too 'clean' first time out, that still sounds like a result to me!
Last edited by MTW on Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by Kev888 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 7:39 pm

Yes I am quite pleased, its not often such things do what I wished. The balance may change as it matures and subtleties may emerge as it clears. But for now it is definitely along the lines I was hoping; plenty of flavour from the malts and not excessive in hops, so it balances fairly well.
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by MTW » Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:25 pm

I meant to type "can't" imagine it lacking flavour... not "can"... Sorry! Edited.
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Re: Something like an APA

Post by Kev888 » Thu Nov 01, 2018 9:58 pm

Heh, no worries; I gathered as such!
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