Monday, February 22, 2016

Podcast Brew Day

Brewing the first iteration of this beer with
Grant Wood of Revolver Brewing
This weekend I was very fortunate to have Atypical DFW Podcast's Jason & Caitlin Tyree on staff at New Main as assistant brewers. The weather was pleasant, the house was clean, and the fermentation chamber empty, so I decided to brew my very own batch of Grant Wood's Black IPA. Judging from conversations with Grant, this will be a nice, clean, hop forward beer that looks as great as it tastes.

Unfortunately, Amanda could not brew with me Saturday morning since she was working. I did however wake up before the crack of dawn to send her on her way which forced me to get ready for brew day. After dusting off my full complement of brewing equipment, I kicked the tires and lit the fires.

Not Out of the Woods Yet Black IPA
Substantial Recipe Credit: Grant Wood
5 gal

8.5lb Pilsner
1.8lb Munich 10L
0.5 lb Black

Added 1 tsp gypsum & Campden tablet to strike water
Mash at 154F for 90 minutes

0.25oz Apollo FWH
1.5oz Saphir 90 min
.13oz Palisade 60 min
1.5oz Saphir 60 min
0.13oz Palisade 45 min
0.5oz Mandarina Bavaria 45 min
.75oz Palisade 5 min
1oz Mandarina Bavaria 5 min

1 tsp Irish Moss @ 15min

White Labs Dry English 007
Ferment @ 64F to 80-90% FG, then ramp up to 70 to finish. Cold crash to 34F & keg.

I went with 007 mainly because I had a Pure Pitch pouch left over from another beer I never got around to brewing. From my experience with mainly stouts, porters, and English ales, 007 finishes pleasantly dry but with a pronounced malt backbone. Yes, I know this is an IPA and the hops should shine through, but I think the maltiness will compliment the citrus and floral notes well. Kind of the bass below the treble.

Each hop charge weighed & measured
I haven't had the chance to brew with any of these hop varieties before, so I'm not quite sure what the finished product will taste like. The Mandarina Bavaria hops are relatively new, being developed in Germany only a few years ago. As the name suggests, these hops impart a sweet citrus flavor akin to tangerines. Saphir is a very mild hop with similar citrus notes and a slight spicy character, making it popular in Belgian ales.

Apollo is a high-alpha variety, meaning it's best suited for imparting bitterness using minimal amounts of hop material. If we had used any towards the end of the boil, it would lend similar citrus character, but with a decidedly more resinous twang. Lastly, Palisade is a variety that has moderate bittering with a fruity-floral quality that I think will pair well with all of the citrus in this beer.

Almost hypnotizing...
The malt bill is deceptively simple with nearly all of the fermentables coming from good ol' fashioned, clean Pilsner malt. A dash of light Munich adds a little toast and grain flavor to liven up the Pilsner. Lastly, we throw in just enough black malt to give this style its signature "black" without making it roasty or burnt-tasting. Contrary to popular belief, black IPAs should not be hoppy porters or stouts. They are first and foremost IPAs, meant to showcase clean or complex hop flavor and aroma. While I love a good roasty porter that wallops you with piney resin, that's just not what this particular style should do. If you want to go that route, substitute the black malt for roast barley and maybe some chocolate malt for classic porter flavor underneath the punch of hops.

I think this will be an interesting beer, and I'm anxious to log tasting notes on this hop profile. When Grant and I brewed the original version of this beer at Dr. Jeckyll's Beer Lab last month, he brought large Ziploc bags of each of these hops except Palisade for people to smell and compare. When the brew was done, he kindly gifted these bags of hops to me, which was no small gift. Aside from relative rarity of some of these hops, they are one of the most expensive ingredients in beer. I was given about a pound of each! Here's to many more brews with these exciting hops!

As usual, I will keep y'all posted on the progress of this beer. I have a couple more brews planned to harness the sweet citrus qualities of these hops, so stay tuned to discover which lucky batches will be blessed with these fine flowers.

Finally, I want to add a new segment to each blog post to keep everyone apprised of what we have available for consumption. This will help me keep stock of what's fresh, what needs to be replaced soon, and which styles I should explore next. I'll also try to have the recipe for each beer available for any of you playing along at home.

Without further ado, here's what's on tap at New Main:

What's On Tap:

Steel Main - British Dark Mild, 3%ABV (Collaboration w/ Kyle of Steel Rain Beer)
Bernoulli Brown - British Brown Ale, 4.5% ABV
Sassy Jester - American IPA, 5-6% ABV (blend)
Rio Bravo Breakfast Sout - 5.5% ABV (Pro-Am w/ Shannon Brewing Co.)


Brettlinerweisse, 2-3% ABV - Summer
Vanilla 9*8*7 - Russian Imperial Stout, 8.5% ABV - Soonish
Chipotle 9*8*7 - Russian Imperial Stout, 8.5% ABV - Soonish
Birthday Barleywine - 10.5% ABV - November

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