A couple months ago, a friend of mine drove down from Portland to visit. In exchange for putting him up for a few nights, I asked that he bring down some of those delicious Portland microbrews to share. He arrived with 3 growlers of ale from [Hair of the Dog](http://www.hairofthedog.com), which is probably my favorite brewery in Portland, if not the country.
One of the growlers contained [Blue Dot Double IPA](http://blog.seattlepi.com/beerblotter/2011/03/09/the-hop-brief-hair-of-the-dog-blue-dot-double-ipa/). Since leaving Portland, I had forgotten what a fantastic and unique beer it is. After doing some research, I decided that it was time to attempt to craft a similar beer in my kitchen. As one would expect from a West Coast double IPA, Blue dot contains a boat load of hops. What I think makes this beer special though is the grain bill: it only contains pilsner malt and flaked rye. Not an ounce of pale ale malt to be found. After sifting through some home brew forums, I decided on this recipe for a 5 gallon batch:
- 15 lb German Pilsner malt
- 2.5 lb flaked rye
- 3.5 oz Warrior (15% AA) 75 minutes
- 3.5 oz Magnum (German) (14% AA) 30 minutes
- 3.5 oz Columbus (15% AA) 5 minutes
- 3 oz Centennial dry hop
- 3 oz Chinook dry hop
- Scottish Ale ([Wyeast 1728](http://www.wyeastlab.com/hb_yeaststrain_detail.cfm?ID=143))
For the mash, I performed a single temperature infusion at 154 F for 90 minutes, followed by 2 batch sparges at 165 F. The result was about 7.5 gallons of wort at a gravity of 1.070. After the boil, I was left with around 7 gallons of wort at 1.074. I lost probably another gallon of liquid which the insane amount of hops absorbed during the boil, so around 5.5 – 6 gallons went into the fermentor.
I finally got a chance to brew a batch of this beer on Sunday. I came home from campus on Monday to find the airlock of my fermentor clogged with hops and the bucket about to burst. I quickly pulled the airlock out of the lid, which resulted in a geyser of hops and beer foam in my dining room. After cleaning up the mess, I rigged a makeshift blow-off tube from the fermentor to relieve the pressure of a decidedly vigorous fermentation. In light of the beer’s tempestuous beginnings, I’ve decided to dub it Poseidon Double IPA. I am expecting a final gravity of around 1.020 for an ABV of 6.8%.
I just racked Poseidon to the secondary fermenter. The final gravity is lower than I had anticipated, about 1.012 as I should have expected from the vigorous primary fermentation. So the ABV should be around 8%. I was going to rack on Friday, but I dropped my glass carboy while I was sanitizing it. Pro tip: buy a carboy handle so you don’t drop your carboy. They are expensive, heavy and when they shatter, they fill your kitchen with about 10 pounds of razor sharp shrapnel.
In case you’ve ever wondered what six ounces of whole leaf hops look like in a 5 gallon batch of beer, here you go: