Sunday, November 15, 2009

A big ol' IPA with Newport hops

Upright got in some really nice looking whole Newport hops recently, and since it's a variety I haven't used in the past, I asked Alex if it would be OK to take a couple ounces home to brew up an IPA. All I know about Newport hops is that they smell nice and herbal/spicy/pungent, and Chillindamos says they make a beer that smells like pot. Also, I've heard that Rogue uses them a lot, but I couldn't find any information on their website to substantiate that.

Since the weather's taken a turn for the cooler, the garage has been staying in the mid to high 50's, which is incredibly convenient for making beer, especially standard ales, which I like to ferment at 68 or thereabouts. Instead of having to use a refrigerator to keep the beers cool, I've been using a normal everyday heating pad hooked into a digital thermostat. I strap the heating pad (set on low) to the carboy and dial the thermostat in to where I want to ferment. If the beer falls below this, the heat kicks on. Without the heating pad, the beers were actually fermenting a little too cold, which is better than too hot to be sure, but still not ideal. NOTE: Sometimes there is a differential between what the thermostat probe (taped to the side of the carboy and insulated) reads, and what the Fermometer reads. I believe the Fermometer to be more accurate, so I usually start with the thermostat set to 66 in case it's reading low.

The Newport is typically a bittering hop, and I used it to bitter and also as part of the 20 minute addition. I also used Summit at 20 minutes and Centennial as a flavor/aroma addition. I used a little Chinook I had laying around to bump the bittering addition slightly to get the IBU's I wanted. The above picture shows only the 20 minute and later additions.

I did not do an entirely analytical water approach this time, but instead opted to use a "Burton salts" mix at slightly less concentration than would actually be found in Burton on Trent. It should still lend to a very hoppy and bitter presence in the finished beer. Instead of about 9 tsp. in my total brewing liquor, I added 3 tsp. to the mash and 2 tsp. to the boil.

I did find out a very interesting fact about Portland water supply, which was pointed out by Paul after my last post: Our water is periodically supplemented with a well-water source that is higher in minerals. Right now it's running 100% Bull Run water, the very low mineral water. If anyone in Portland is interested in getting updates on when the water is being implemented with Columbia South Shore water and what the new approximate mineral concentrations will be, you can email Kristen Anderson at:

And now for the beer recipe. Once again I am experiencing less control and predictability than before in my NYC apartment setup, but this time just in the form of an unexpectedly high mash efficiency. I just decided to roll with it and make a bigger beer, upping the bittering addition proportionately.

Recipe is for 7.25 gallons pre-boil, 6.1 gallons post boil, all grain.
O.G. 1.069 F.G 1.016 ABV 7.1% IBU's 80

11.5 lb. 2-row pale malt
.75 lb. Munich Malt
.5 lb. carapils
.5 lb. crystal 60

7 gr. Chinook whole 10% AA 60 min
28 gr. Newport whole 10% AA 60 min
28 gr. Newport whole 10% AA 20 min
24 gr. Summit pellets 16% AA 20 min
28 gr. Centennial whole 7.8% 10 min
28 gr. Centennial whole 7.8% 0 min
56 gr. Centennial whole 7.8% dry hopped for 2 weeks (in a cheesecloth sack in the keg)

Mashed in 4 gallons H2O + 3 tsp Burton Salts to 152
kept temp between 151-154 for 60 minutes
Sparged with 5 gallons at 170
Collected 7 gallons at 1.060, added 1 quart top-up water and 2 tsp Burton salts.

Boil 60 minutes, hop additions as noted.
Wyeast nutrient & Whirlfloc at 10 min
Chilled to 66, quite a bit of break made it into the fermenter unfortunately.
Pitched a 1/2 thick slurry of Wyeast 1056 Cali ale yeast.
Ferment at 68
Racked to keg on 12/1/09 Tastes good but maybe too balanced, the F.G. was a little higher than I had hoped. Let's wait and see when it's carbonated and dry hopped.


thatguy314 said...

I could be wrong, but Rogue made a one-off beer called Hop Heaven. I believe that was an all Newport beer. I can't find anything about it on their website, but I see vintage releases of different years by google. I don't know if they all were all-newport beers, or just the one.

Anonymous said...

I just happened to make a Newport IPA today.. used the Newport for bittering, the rest is Columbus.. I may dry hop with some Centennial..
what yeast did you use?? I used 007. Good luck. Be sure to tell us how it turned out.

Paul! said...

I really really liked drinking this one the other day. Maybe not the best IPA, but If the color were corrected a touch it would be an outstanding red ale. I'm definitely stealing your malt bill on this one.

The Drakes said...

I just got a lb of Newports for free along with about 5 lbs of Nuggets - fresh off the farms kiln floor. I am planning on doing a big IPA with it.

Just stumbled on your blog. I live and brew in Salem, OR.

Cheers :)

Seanywonton said...

Wow, sounds great. Thanks for the comment, and happy brewing to you. The Newports I got were from Jeff DeSantis. I forget his hop business name but he is one of the owners of 7 Brides.