Thursday, April 9, 2015

Batch 166, Guava IPA

This is a new recipe that I've been wanting to work on. I had a guava IPA in Chicago a few years ago, $18 for a 22 ounce bottle. I had two, they were that good. For this first attempt, I wanted to make sure there was enough malt backbone for the fruity flavors of the Citra hops and the guava, so I used some Munich malt. I also added a little Crystal malt to make sure there was some residual sweetness, which should help promote the guava. Wheat for head retention, of course.

The guava is actually a guava paste I found on Amazon. It's from Brazil, and comes in 1 kg blocks. The Brazilian name is "goiabada", and is actually a popular dessert there. In English speaking countries, it's also known as "guava cheese". The ingredients are just guava and sugar. It's pretty tasty as is. I thought it would be like honey, something to add at the end of the boil, but it didn't actually melt in a couple of quarts of hot wort. I put it in a blender with some hot wort and blended until smooth. I poured it back into the boil kettle through a strainer, but all I got was a few hops and a couple of pea-sized pieces of guava. Having never used guava paste before, this batch is really an experiment to see how it works. Pure guava nectar is almost impossible to find.

This is a 5 gallon batch.

Other notes --

I had meant to use Crystal 60, but I was out, so I used Crystal 10 instead.

Only Citra hops in this. As far as I can tell, that's all that the brewery in Chicago used in theirs. It's a real fruity smelling hop, so it should compliment the guava nicely.

The 158F mash temp is again to retain some residual sweetness. Hopefully, not too sweet.

Actual OG was 1.070.

Batch Size5.576 galBoil Size8.076 gal
Boil Time90.000 minEfficiency70%
ABV6.9%Bitterness74.8 IBU (Tinseth)
Color8.3 srm (Morey)Calories (per 12 oz.)237


Total grain: 18.000 lb
Pale Malt (2 Row) USGrain11.500 lbYesNo79%2.0 srm
Munich Malt - 10LGrain3.500 lbYesNo77%10.0 srm
Caramel/Crystal Malt - 10LGrain1.000 lbYesNo75%10.0 srm
Guava pasteSugar1.000 lbNoYes82%10.0 srm
White Wheat MaltGrain1.000 lbYesNo86%2.0 srm


Citra13.8%1.000 ozFirst Wort90.000 minLeaf32.1
Citra13.8%1.000 ozBoil60.000 minLeaf27.3
Citra13.8%1.000 ozBoil10.000 minLeaf9.9
Citra13.8%1.000 ozBoil5.000 minLeaf5.4


Irish MossFiningBoil1.000 tsp15.000 min


Wyeast - American Ale IIAleLiquid0.528 cupPrimary


NameTypeAmountTempTarget TempTime
Conversion Step, 68CInfusion5.313 gal177.268 F158.000 F60.000 min
Final Batch SpargeInfusion4.897 gal186.363 F165.200 F15.000 min


Guava paste didn't dissolve in hot wort, so put it in the blender with some hot wort until it was smooth. Poured it back into the boil kettle through a strainer, only caught some hops and a couple of pea sized pieces of guava paste.

Dry hop with 1 oz Citra in secondary.

April 10, really violent fermentation! It's not often that I get a blow off with a 6.5 gallon fermenter.

April 11, fermentation has slowed, but is still quite active. I tasted a small sample, it's still somewhat sweet, but the guava and the hops seem to be in a nice balance.

April 20, finally down to 1.016, so kegged it. I think some adjustments are in order:

  • Bump up the Munich. There isn't enough malt backbone. 
  • Bump up the guava. There is some guava flavor, but not quite enough.
  • Replace the 60 minute Citra with Magnum, and increase the amount. It's not quite bitter enough to offset the sweetness.
  • Drop the crystal. I don't think it needs the added sweetness.
  • Maybe go with London Ale III instead of American Ale II? I don't think the fruitiness from the American Ale II is needed, the London Ale yeast is more neutral flavored.

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