Brew #6 – IPA


[For those who may not know, that picture above is krausen – not the final product!] This is an attempt to copy one of my favorite beers, Saranac’s Legacy IPA  (I won’t say clone since there’s definitley unknown ingredients). Their site lists malts used, some of the hops, IBUs and ABV. I used the ingredients that they do list, and came pretty close on all the numbers. For hopping schedule, I basically just came up with it myself. I looked at the hops typical purpose (bittering or flavor/aroma) and timed things accordingly. We’ll see what happens. This is my first all-grain 5 gallon batch!


Before mixing up, you can see the Munich malt vs the 2-row

Artsy US-05 pic
“Artsy” US-05 pic





9 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 1 75.0 %
3 lbs Munich Malt (9.0 SRM) Grain 2 25.0 %
0.50 oz Centennial [10.00 %] – Boil 60.0 min Hop 3 18.1 IBUs
0.35 oz Chinook [13.00 %] – Boil 60.0 min Hop 4 16.5 IBUs
0.35 oz Cluster [7.00 %] – Boil 60.0 min Hop 5 8.9 IBUs
0.25 oz Chinook [13.00 %] – Boil 30.0 min Hop 6 9.1 IBUs
0.25 oz Citra [12.00 %] – Boil 30.0 min Hop 7 8.4 IBUs
0.50 oz Cascade [5.50 %] – Boil 1.0 min Hop 8 0.4 IBUs
2.0 pkg Safale American (DCL/Fermentis #US-05) [50.28 ml] Yeast 9
1.00 oz Goldings, East Kent [5.00 %] – Dry Hop 7.0 Days Hop 10 0.0 IBUs

Brew Day (1/18/16)

  1. Started around 10am. Heated around 4 gallons of water to ~164F
  2. Preheated my mash tun (first use!) with some hot water from sink, and then also some of the strike water for only a minute or two.
  3. Added strike water and about 1 tbsp of 5.2 PH stabilizer.
  4. Doughed in – target temp is 152F

    My first-ever mash
    My first-ever mash
  5. Hit about 150.5 – heating up water on stove in teapot to adjust – I should’ve had this ready! After about 6 minutes into the mash, I added it. I don’t know what it’s exact temperature was. It hardly had an effect when I quickly stirred it in.
  6. I heated up more water in a pot, to around 164F and added it. More adjustment water added with 40 mins left in mash; mash is now only about 146F! I think I’m done taking the cover on and off and messing with it.
  7. Added 10 minutes to the one-hour mash time to hopefully make up for lower temp.
  8. Iodine test: looks good!
  9. This is my first-ever AG brew, Vorlauf and sparge. I’ve watched a ton of people do it on YouTube so I was pretty confident. What ended up happening was, I did something between a fly sparge (initially) and a batch sparge. I vorlaufed, and it looked pretty clear, but I stepped away for 30 seconds, and I started getting a lot of grain coming out. So I just dumped all the sparge water in (not exactly measured but it was close to how much Beersmith calculated for me), stirred it up, vorlaufed again, and then just drained it out. I topped up my boil kettle just a bit with some water that had been heated on the stove too. I ended up with quite a bit of grain in my wort. I skimmed some off, but a lot stayed in there.
    Vorlaufed, and it started running clear (maybe not in this pic yet) but still ended up with grain in my boil.
    Vorlaufed, and it started running clear (maybe not in this pic yet) but still ended up with grain in my boil.

    Lots of grain making it into the boiler.
    Lots of grain making it into the boil.
  10. 6 gallons on the boil – gravity adjusted for temp of 136F: 1.067 (!). I’m not sure this reading could be accurate… See below.
  11. The hot break

  12. Hop additions per schedule above.

    You can really see how much crap got in my wort into this pic. Hopefully it’ll settle out.
  13. During the boil, rehydrated 2 packets of Safale US-05.
    IMG_4216 IMG_4222
  14. Rehydrated irish moss for about 20 mins in warm water and added it at 15 minutes left.

    Irish moss
    Irish moss
  15. OG: 1.062 – somehow the OG measurement went down from the pre-boil. The pre-boil gravity must be an error – I measured it at around 136F and used an adjustment in Beersmith, but the gravity should go UP after the boil, not down. The important thing though, is the OG – which is good! And dead on with Beersmith’s estimated OG. For the OG, I read it at around the hydrometer’s calibrated temp.
    Beersmith is damn good at estimating the color.
    Beersmith is damn good at estimating the color.

    Read (and tasted) this a couple hours later.
    Read (and tasted) this a couple hours later after the bubbles diminished.
  16. I aerated by pouring back and forth between a sanitized bucket and the brew pot, then I poured it into the 6.5 gallon carboy through a funnel. I made the wort very frothy and bubbly from this, and a lot of it didn’t end up in the carboy. I think next time I’ll siphon into the carboy. My new carboy is not marked yet, but I think I may’ve gotten only around 4 gallons because of all the froth. I do want to upgrade to at least an aquarium pump or something (more $!)
  17. Pitched at 2:30 pm – saw some airlock activity at 5pm! Bubbling about once a minute.
  18. I think the wort might have been warmer than I realized. Was off the chart on “fermometer” (it goes up to 86F), and now at 10:45pm, it says 82F. Constant bubbling! Nice krausen already and it’s churning around in there.
  19. Clean up.
The ol' Spent Grain pile. Which I just started.
I just started this pile.

The next morning

Looking good! Bubbling pretty much constantly now.



Bottling (2/1/16 — 2/3/16)

This thing bubbled (to some degree) for the whole 2 weeks it’s been in primary. So to avoid “bottle bombs”, I’m being cautious and doing a gravity reading today, and then another in 2 days, to see if it’s done. Today’s reading: 1.005! (ABV 7.5%) It’s definitely a bit boozy, and it’s more aromatic than any I’ve done so far. Looking forward to seeing how it tastes carbed. It’s now Monday and I’m assuming I’m bottling Wednesday. I think the bubbling may be totally stopped as of now, but yesterday I was still getting about one a minute.

1.005! I think.
1.005! I think.


Wednesday….. Gravity is the same as Monday… bottled with 3.55 oz corn sugar disolved in 2 cups boiled water. Yielded 43 bottles – I knew I lost some from aerating the hell out of it on brew day and getting it all foamy. Drank a bit too. Maybe a bit citrusy for my taste, and I’m not yet sure if it tastes anything like the Saranac Legacy IPA, but I can tell it will still be a quality beer!

Tasting (2/17/16)

As usual, this is not my first tasting, but my first tasting for the record, as today it’s been in bottles 2 weeks. It has a very noticeable hop bouquet (the most yet of any beer I’ve done). It’s kind of thin and boozy, and I think this is from the lower mash temperature. It may also be due to the warmer FERMENTATION temperature (as noted above), or over-aeration of the wort. So my goals for next AG brew are: hit the mash temp, don’t get carried away with aeration (pouring back and forth, which I did a LOT on this one), and making sure my pitching temp is just right.

As for taste, if I had to compare it to a commercial beer, I’d say somehow it tastes closest to Bells Two Hearted ale. And I know that’s considered a world-class beer, and I’m not trying to give myself too much credit here, but honestly! It’s good. I would prefer it be more full bodied and have more of a mouth-feel, but not bad for my first 5 gallon all-grain batch. I’m realizing I don’t love the citrusy hops and I think I’ll shy away from them next time. Right now I have a little hop inventory and I’m going to see what I can put together for the next brew day using what I have.

2016-02-17 16.58.04 2016-02-17 16.57.36

Tasting (2/28/16)

I’m starting to really enjoy this one. It’s mellowed out some, and the flavors have melded more (I think?). I think the one thing I don’t love about this is the Kent Goldings hop that I dry-hopped with. I didn’t love the smell when I sniffed it in the pouch, and I definitely can detect it in the flavor. I think I’ll do this one again, and dry hop with something diferrent next time, because overall it’s quite good for my first AG!

2016-02-28 17.13.27 2016-02-28 16.34.41

Tasting (4/8/16)

I just starting drinking my very last of these, right after drinking #7, and WOW. Just when I was thinking #7 was maturing to be as good, I have to say, this beer is my best so far. It’s so clear and light-colored and has a great taste which has really mellowed out and developed (maybe grew on me too). I think the aging has helped. I will have to see how #7 compares when it gets a little older, but farewell to this one; it was great! I definitely see making it again.