Just making my rotations through hops that I don’t use often, or never at all. This time we’re using Topaz (never used before), Rakau (used a few times before), and El Dorado (used a lot!)
Here’s the recipe, similar to the previous NEIPAs I’ve done before. I pretty much always use hop extract early on and Idaho 7 at 10 minutes to get my desired IBUs, then let loose with whatever hop I’m featuring after that.
|Batch Size (fermentor):||6.5 gallons|
|Boil Length:||60 minutes|
|Mash Temp:||150F||Single Infusion|
|OG:||1.070 (estimated)||1.065 (actual)|
|FG:||1.017 (estimated)||1.012 (actual)|
|ABU:||6.96% (estimated)||6.96% (actual)|
|Golden Naked Oats||9.6%|
|Yakima Hop Shot||1 ml||FWH or 60 min|
|Idaho 7||1.5 oz||10 Min|
|Rakau||1.5 oz||Whirlpool @ 170|
|Topaz||3 oz||Whirlpool @ 170|
|El Dorado||1 oz||Whirlpool @ 170|
|Rakau||2 oz||Dryhop 24 hours after pitch|
|Topaz||3 oz||Dryhop 24 hours after pitch|
|El Dorado||2 oz||Dryhop 24 hours after pitch|
|Total||14 oz + 1 ml extract|
|Imperial A38 Juice||1 Pack, big boy starter||Pitch at 68, let free raise to 72ish after a few days|
|With 5 min left in boil, start adjusting pH down to 4.6.||I add 3 mL Lactic Acid at a time while recirculating.||This takes a few minutes after you cut the flame|
Brew Day – 1/28/21
Not much to say here, normal brew day. Didn’t get many pics, just my normal sight glass at mash and boil stages.
Packaging – 2/11/21
The sample tastes great. Spot on with the descriptors of Topaz on YVH’s website. Citrus, woody aromatic, sweet fruit. Lots of these generic flavors coming through. Looks like it’s my favorite yellow orange color as expected.
Also, don’t mind if I do have myself a Pliny the Younger. Cherry Foeder for the wife. Ignore her dirty glass!
So, it took me a while to actually come around to finish writing this post because this one took a little while for the flavors to develop in a good way.
I’ll say it off the bat: It’s not my favorite NEIPA, but it’s still darn tasty. It’s very interesting the character that Topaz hops give off. The aroma is a very pleasant sweet. The flavor favors the woodiness that the hop is known to have.
This beer actually tastes like a West Coast / East Coast Hybrid kind of beer. A good comparison (not on actual finished product, but of that hybrid style) would be Cellarmaker’s DDH Simcoe Galaxy and Bucket of Truth. Cellarmaker – one of my favorite breweries – makes a lot of hazy west coast IPAs that are just incredible.
The wood flavors I get are very pleasant. Not overpowering. Not like it sat in a barrel or anything. It actually reminds me of the later stages of my Sabro IPA. That beer was nuts and over it’s 6 week keg life, it changed from a coconut bomb to a wood bomb to a mellow coconut fruit profile. Topaz hops remind me of the wood bomb stage of that beer.
Here is the final pic. Great beer overall, I probably won’t feature Topaz as the main hop in any more beers. I actually think it would be incredible in a West Coast IPA. I’ll have to start thinking of that.
Next beer to come on the blog – Russian River’s Blind Pig Inaugural Ale Clone. Next Brew day – massive barleywine going into a bourbon barrel.