When in New England, you get many requests to brew NEIPAs or New England style India Pale Ales. This area of the USA is where this style was born and the people seem to love it. From the explosion of new breweries touting their special version of the brew to the devotees standing in line for hours to pick up a couple of cases, it completely evident that the NEIPA is driving craft beer growth in our area.
One of those devotees is Mike’s brother-in-law. He loves the stuff. Three years ago, he was macro-beer drinker, shunning most of craft beer. Now, he picks up a four pack of some new hoppy elixir every week. For Christmas, Mike was asked to brew a NEIPA for him. Even though Mike is a keeper of classic beer style flame, he still can’t stay away from the grip of the dry hopped madness.
So, sit back and watch us discuss another NEIPA and see the conclusion that we come to that connects homebrewing and hop freshness.
Yet Another NEIPA Beer Recipe
Batch Size: 5.5 gallons goes into the fermentor
10 pounds of Munton’s Pale Malt
2 pounds of Torrified Wheat
1 pound 6 ounces of Flaked Oats
1 pound clear Belgian Candi syrup
.5 pound of rice hulls to prevent a stuck sparge
1 ounce of Cascade hops – 20 minutes left in the boil
1 ounce of Amarillo hops – 20 minutes left in the boil
1 ounce of Azaaca hops – 20 minutes left in the boil
1 ounce of Mandarina Bavaria – 20 minutes left in the boil
1 ounce of Cascade hops – Added to fermentor while racking from kettle
1 ounce of Amarillo hops – Added to fermentor while racking from kettle
1 ounce of Azaaca hops – Added to fermentor while racking from kettle
1 ounce of Mandarina Bavaria – Added to fermentor while racking from kettle
2 ounces of Citra hops – dry hopped in the keg
Yeast: Imperial Yeast A38 Juice
Mash at 149 F for an hour
Fermented for one week and kegged.
Original Gravity: 1.060
Final Gravity: 1.012
It was hard to pull out a specific hoppy note but it was a tropical fruit explosion. Mike made a fine version of the style and it showed by how quickly it was consumed. We reiterated the foundation of this style – it really does come down to a simple grain bill and a large amount of hops.
For the grains, find a light base malt that you like and get some wheat and oats into it. Adding a pound of sugar will add to the starting gravity and will help dry it out a bit.
The hops are up to you but find ones that you like that bring some good fruit flavors – nothing too spicy – and be prepared to add a pound to you brew late in the process. I have been adding 12 ounces of hops during fermentation with great success.
Lastly, if there was ever a reason to homebrew, this style may be it. The freshness factor, the magic as Mike puts it, requires the beer to be as fresh as possible. Those 48 hours right after the beer gets racked to the keg are the best. Brewing NEIPAs at home may be the greatest motivation to get your homebrew process going.
If you’re looking for inspiration for your NEIPA, look at this list of the most common hops used in IPAs by Beer Maverick.