Ramble On

Monday, September 28, 2015

Brewing with Farm-Raised @hawksbillhops

On Saturday, I bottled the Harvest Black IPA - this is the second year I brewed it with hops I personally harvested, and the first time I brewed it with hops from Hawksbill Hop Yards, my farm in Luray, VA.  (I've written about it frequently, but if you want to see all the past posts, click here.)

Last year, the Harvest Black IPA was an all-Cascade affair (link), brewed with wet hops from my friend Bill.  I ended up making two batches of that one and they were well received, which is why I used the recipe again.  Bill recently told me that he has saved enough Cascade in the freezer that I can brew a couple of more batches.

In addition to Bill's Cascades, I have in mind to brew two versions of this beer from the 2015 Hawksbill Hop Yards harvest: first, a brew based on the combined flavors of CTZ and Cascade; and second, one that will feature a Chinook and Cascade combination.  To add some complexity to the first batch, I dry-hopped with two ounces of Cascade during secondary fermentation.

The recipe was derived from the Northern Brewer "Ace of Spades" extract kit, only now I order the ingredients separately and combine them in the necessary quantities for the beer.  In this case, I brewed on August 14th, and set the beer up to ferment with 1.068 O.G. - and ended up on September 25 with 1.014 F.G., for an ABV of 7.2%.

For the hops additions, here is the schedule I used on brew day:

  • 60 minutes - 1 oz. CTZ
  • 45 minutes - 1 oz. CTZ
  • 30 minutes - 1 oz. Cascade
  • 15 minutes - 1 oz. Cascade
  • 5 minutes - 2 oz. Cascade
  • Secondary dry hop - 2 oz. Cascade
You can surmise that I was after a decent IBU kick (the IBU calculator I used says 88 IBU, based on alphas of 13.23% and 6.65% on the CTZ and Cascade, respectively), but also wanted to be sure you got a punch in the face from Cascade aroma, thus the dry hop.  There is a lot of dark, sweet malt in this to balance those hops.  

I'm looking forward to seeing how this beer is after it bottle conditions for a couple of weeks...

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