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Trying my own recipe - April 2015

posted Aug 16, 2015, 2:38 PM by Tony Scarpino   [ updated Aug 16, 2015, 4:44 PM ]
I have not been a fan of high IBU beers. I like malt characteristics of English-style beers, so I found an English Pale Ale (EPA) recipes with Maris Otter, Crystal Malt, and Special B.  Instead of Kent Goldings switch it with Citra.  I know Citra is not an EPA hop, but it was my experiment to see how much the flavor changed.  I used the same hop weights as the recipe, so I had a one to one comparison.  If there weren't a lot of Citra characteristics then I'd still have a drinkable beer.  If there were a lot more flavor, then I'd know how much the oil differences between Citra and Kent Goldings affect the flavor.

My recipe was for 3 gallons.  From the start I wanted to make smaller batches so I could experiment more.  I don't drink everyday and I don't want a bunch of beer lying around.  What beer I do brew has encouraged more hottub parties at my house, so maybe not a bad thing for my friends.

My wife was away so I went to my friends place, kettle in-hand, to brew with him as he was doing an EPA partial mash.  Side note, For my friends brew, he had a mystery grain in his cabinet so he through it into his mash tun.  Turned out to be a wheat malt so
that beer was forever named a Wheat EPA.   We had to take a trip for more propane with my friend's burner which allowed my steeping to fall to 140°F before warming it back up to 155.  There were a few mishaps.  I forgot my clarifier and I put in the chiller late which made me run the boil a bit longer.  Probably hurting my hop flavoring a bit, but only a few minutes extra.  Nevertheless, I hit the target gravity and was ready to ferment.  The 3 gallons looked a bit funny in the 6 gallon carboy.  Luckily the thermowell that had finally came in stock at MoreBeer.  Also luckily it was long enough to reach the wort.

Even before I got home I felt it was going to be too light of hop flavor.  I modified the recipe and planned to brew another batch when the fermentation fridge was empty.  I named this beer C1, and the following on recipe C2.

The end result was only a hint of Citra.  It was a drinkable beer, just not a lot to distinguish it.