Like so many breweries Double Barrelled was started by home brewers, in this case Mike and Luci Clayton – Jones. We contacted Mike and he gave us some incite into the method of hoping for this beer.
The hops used in this beer are Chinook, Amarillo Cryo and Ahtanum Cryo. Just a quick note about Cryo hops. These are actually a trade marked product by YCH. Now, YCH are extremely protective of their Cryo product, they wont have it repacked. As home brewers, they are really difficult to get hold of but we do have an equivalent product in the BBC hop pellets that we supply in home brew friendly packaging.
Anyhow, back to the beer, so Mike doesn’t do a conventional hop charge, instead he has taken inspiration from Dogfish Heads method of continual hopping, they use this in their 60, 75, 90 and 120 minute IPA. Dogfish head have a specially designed machine, nicknamed ” Sir Hops a lot” that doses these beers with measured amount of hops continually thought the boil.
Mike has suggested that he doesn’t quite go this far but they do take what would be their initial bittering charge and instead of adding in one go they continually add for 20 minutes. Then follow the same process for the late boil additions.
Mike has explained the reason for this approach is that it changes the flavour profile of the hops used, these are small differences but they do set this beer apart. My thought is that it is adding particularly to the piney flavour profile.
We are going to have to experiment with this hopping method and have a side by side brew planned where we will conventionally hop one and continually hop the other, look out for a blog post coming soon
For whirlpool additions on their West Coast style beers such as this, it is carried out directly after boil, at flame out whilst the wort is still near boiling. This means they get solid bitterness from the hops and it reduces the whirlpool period down to about 8 minutes, this is important as wort near boiling temperature has a chance of forming DMS, the corn flavour that would be seen as a fault in this style of beer. There is no hint of it, the beer is delicious.
I know many of you are really into softer, fluffy IPA’s but to get the rounded bitterness that this beer delivers is a real treat.