The first beer I ever brewed was an all-grain IPA together with my friend Jannik. We were rookies trying to aggregate information we didn’t understand from two languages. The process was sub-optimal and inefficient. The cooling phase after the boil took so fucking long that we watched most of Under the Dome, a feature-length (and amazing!) documentary on air pollution in China. It was midnight on a Sunday, all we’d had for dinner was some bell peppers and hummus I’d rummaged from out of the fridge, and we were exhausted. I finally sent my brewing partner home, set my alarm clock for way too early, and went to bed. The next morning, the wort was still twenty-something degrees, but I was too tired to give a damn. In went the yeast and off to work went I.
(So began a bad habit of pitching yeast too warm. Water has an immense specific heat capacity!)
At the tasting 39 days later, I insisted on drinking it room temp so that all flavours were present. The predominant flavour was bitterness, but my notes also read “hoppy”, “floral” and “balanced”.
Today, 15 months later, I opened my very last bottle, expecting the hops to have dispersed and to be left with little more than a bitter liquid. Aroma hops are supposed to fade quickly, after all. Was I in for a surprise! Big, bold aromas of intensely sweet peach, apple, and maybe mango hit my nose. Taste was pleasantly bitter. Good head, good carbonation. A perfect IPA :’-)
Would brew again. Here’s the recipe.