No beer tastes better than the one you brew yourself – in theory, at least. Developing one’s own recipe is certainly part of the fun, yet brewing according to an existing recipe is crucial to enhance any homebrewer's skills.
With a potentially extended period of lockdown ahead of us, homebrewers have more time than ever to get crushing, mashing and boiling, so why not cut your teeth on the recipes of some iconic craft beers?
Brussels Beer Project Delta IPA
Belgium-based Brussels Beer Project (BBP) has released the recipe of its renowned Delta IPA to help homebrewers make the most of their lockdown days. BBP said that it will be unveiling new recipes soon: make sure you try this out before you move on to the next one.
- Final abv: 6.5%
- Final IBU: 45
- Final EBC: 18
- Original gravity (OG): 1,053
- Final gravity (FG): 1,004
- 14l water
- 4kg pale malt
Option one: single-step mash, 1hr 15min at 62°
Option two: multi-step mash
- Step 1: 5min at 52°
- Step 2: 1hr at 62°
- Step 3: 20min at 72°
- Step 4: 5min at 78°
- Step 5: Sparge, add 14l water
Boil (add 24l)
- 1hr 15min: Add 50g Challenger
- 0min: Add 25g Smaragd; 50g Citra
- Day 0: Pitch 22g of Belle Saison yeast at 21°
- Day 1: Raise the temperature to 28°
- Day 11: Dry hop 50g of Citra, 20g of Cascade, and 20g of Mosaic
- Day 14: Drop the temperature to 3° and keep for two days
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale
Last year, leading American brewery Sierra Nevada released the recipe of its flagship Pale Ale. Instructions provided by the brewery for a 18l batch are minimal yet sufficient, perhaps aimed at more experienced homebrewers.
- Final abv: 5.6%
- FG: 1,011
- 18l water
- 92% Two Row Pale
- 8% Caramel
Mash grains at 68° for 1hr. Raise mash temperature to 76°, hold for 5min, then recirculate. Run off wort and sparge with water hot enough to keep the grain bed around 76°.
- 1.5hr: Add 14g Cascade
- 1hr: Add 21g Cascade
- 30min: Add 57g Cascade
- 0min: Add 57g Cascade (flame out)
Cool wort to 20° and pitch with California ale yeast, aka Chico ale yeast.
BrewDog Punk IPA
Love it or hate it, BrewDog is an icon of British craft brewing. The controversial Scottish brewery released its first recipe e-book back in 2016, DIY Dog, and kept updating the document since then. It currently features a staggering 415 recipes, including the one for its flagship Punk IPA, which we report below.
- Final abv: 5.6%
- Final IBU: 40
- Final EBC: 15
- OG: 1,053
- FG: 1,011
- 25l water (for a 20l batch)
- 4.38kg extra pale malt
- 0.25kg cara malt
Single step mash, 1hr 15min at 66°.
- Start: Add 20g Chinook; 12.5g Ahtanum
- Middle: Add 20g Chinook; 12.5g Ahtanum
- End: Add 27.5g Chinook; 12.5g Ahtanum; 12.5g Simcoe; 12.5g Nelson Sauvin
Pitch Wyeast 1056 American Ale yeast at 19°.
Dry hop at 14° for 5 days with 47.5g Chinook; 37.5g Ahtanum; 37.5g Simcoe; 20g Nelson Sauvin; 37.5g Cascade; 10g Amarillo.
Elusive Brew Spellbinder
Specifically to fight against the lockdown, Berkshire-based Elusive Brewing has released some of its most popular beers’ recipes. The one reported below is for 20l of Spellbinder Coffee Porter.
- Final abv: 6%
- Final EBC: 48
- Final IBU: 23
- OG: 1,061
- FG: 1,015
- 4.15kg Golden Promise
- 0.7kg Brown
- 0.28kg Light Crystal
- 0.28kg Extra Dark Crystal
- 0.14kg Malted Oats
- 0.14kg Chocolate
Mash in a single infusion at 67°.
- 60m: Add 15g Magnum (13% AA)
Pitch 11g of Safale S-04 yeast then ferment at 20° for five days. Add 0.1kg of whole bean coffee in a sanitised muslin bag and hold at 20° for one day. Crash chill to around 5°.
Stone Brewing Pale Ale
This iconic beer is a must-try for any homebrewer. Stone published the recipe in response to its decision to discontinue production back in 2015. Now it's your turn to bring it back to life.
- OG: 1,057
- FG: 1,014
- 34l water (for a 19l batch)
- 4.7kg North American Two Row Pale Malt
- 0.57kg 60L Crystal
- 1.36kg 75L Crystal
Hold the mash at 68° for 20 minutes then bring to 74°.
Lauter the mash. Once the liquid is lower than the level of the grain, begin to slowly sparging with water at 76°.
- 1.5hr: Add 12.5g Columbus hops (12.9% AA)
- 15min: Add ½ tsp Irish moss
- 10min: Add 22g Ahtanum hops (6.0% AA)
- 0min: Add 34g Ahtanum hops (6.0% AA)
Pitch 35ml of White Labs WLP007 Dry English Ale yeast or WLP002 English Ale yeast and ferment at 22°. Add one cup plus three tablespoons of light dried malt extract before bottling.