Earl Grey IPA

Like we mentioned in a recent tweet, we’ll be consolidating the recipe builds and their reviews into single posts now. For my first submission to that, I present my Earl Grey IPA recipe. Let’s take a look!

Grains:

  • 6 lbs 2 Row
  • 1 lb Honey malt
  • 3 lb light DME

Hops:

  • 1 oz Galena at 60
  • 1 oz Lemondrop at 10

Adjuncts:

  • Clarity Ferm
  • 25g Earl Grey Loose Leaf from Fortnum and Mason at 15 mins

Yeast:

  • West Coast Ale I – Omega #OYL-004

Carbonation Schedule (PSI in days):

  • 30 – 20 – 20 – 12

This was a super fun one for me to brew and it got me out of my comfort zone. Unlike my co-brewer, I’m not all that adventurous in my brewing. However, the Earl Grey IPA forced me to try new things. For instance, I had very little idea how I should go about adding tea to the brew. I had to decide between making tea then adding it in secondary, or just throwing tea leaves in during the boil. Obviously, I went with the latter, which afford the opportunity for the photo below:

Pretty….

Honestly I was rather excited about this beer, and was pleasantly surprised by the results. Make no mistake, this is a weird beer, especially one that’s meant to be an IPA.

Bergamot is the first scent on the nose, followed by a sort of sweet creaminess. That creaminess continues – It’s a very smooth beer to drink, potentially aided by the extra day conditioning at 20 psi. Sweet cream, black tea, lemon, and malt (almost like a biscuit) all make this feel more like a cup of Earl Grey tea, and less like an IPA. It lacks the bitterness I had hoped for, but the honey malt shines through supporting crisp fruitiness of lemondrop and bergamot.

It’s likely I’ll do variations of this style, perhaps in smaller batches, until I work out the kinks. I spoke to many brewers about this recipe and searched forums, where I heard differing – often conflicting – advice on brewing with tea. Keen to figure out the best way to make this style, I’ll keep tinkering with it.

Side note: I have no idea what the caffeine content is in this other than “non-zero” so that’ll be fun to learn about after a night working on the keg.

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