Simarillo IIPA: Redux

July 28, 2010

At the end of last year I decided to make my first Imperial IPA using Simcoe and Amarillo hops. I missed my extraction efficiency and volume by a decent amount, but it came out fantastic. It had lots of up front bitterness that gave way to a beautiful citrus flavor. The finish was bitter and almost resiny.  The hop aroma was huge and wonderful.

Suffice to say that I was pleased with that batch and have wanted to brew it again for a while. This past Sunday I went and tried to recreate it with my current brewing setup. There were three issues that arose, which I’ll get to after laying out the recipe:

Simarillo IIPA

Boil Volume: 7 gallons

Batch Volume: 5.5 gallons


  • 13.50 lb Maris Otter Malt
  • 2.00 lb Munich Malt
  • 1.00 lb Crystal 60L
  • 1.00 Turbinado Sugar


  • 1.75 oz Simcoe hops (Boiled for 60 minutes, 12.2% Alpha Acid content)
  • 1.00 oz Amarillo hops (Boiled for 30 minutes, 6.9% Alpha Acid content)
  • 1.00 oz Simcoe (Boiled for 15 minutes)
  • 1.50 oz Amarillo (Boiled for 10 minutes)
  • 1.25 oz Simcoe (Boiled for 5 minutes)
  • 2.00 oz Amarillo (Boiled for 0 minutes)
  • 2.00 oz Simcoe (Dry hops in secondary)
  • 2.00 oz Amarillo (Dry hops in secondary)

Mash Schedule:

  • Add 5 gallons of water at 163F
  • Equilibrate to 150F
  • Mash for 75 minutes


Wyeast #1056 American Ale yeast.

Now to the issues I had. First, my local store didn’t have any Vienna malt which is what the recipe called for originally. Instead, I had to substitute Munich malt. I don’t think it’ll make that big of a difference, but it’ll make the beer slightly darker and slightly maltier. Who knows, maybe it’ll be better this way. I’m very much looking forward to seeing how this change impacts it.

The second issue was that I forgot to add the turbinado sugar until I was in the process of chilling the beer. Dammit. I wound up boiling the sugar in a quart of water and adding it while in the chilling process. The only real impact this has is that it increased the volume of the final beer, thus reducing the starting gravity by a few points. It came in at 1.077 instead of 1.080. That’s not going to be that big of a deal, but it’s irritating.

On Monday I found the final issue with the batch: even in the basement it’s fermenting at around 72 degrees. Now this yeast strain still ferments pretty well in the 70+ range and the ridiculous amount of hops will help cover up any fermentation flavor issues, but it’s got me thinking about getting a large plastic bucket to fill with an ice bath to keep the fermenter cool in the summer. Last summer this wasn’t an issue because it was an unusually cool summer, but this year I get no such luck.


2 Responses to “Simarillo IIPA: Redux”

  1. beercommdood Says:

    My basement got really warm this year as well. Ice may shock the yeast, don’t you think? Or are you thinking just a bit of ice in the water? Maybe a cube tray’s worth a day, and a t-shirt over the carboy?

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