Brew Day: Pliny the Elder (Double IPA) Clone

imageLike hops?!  This beer has lots of them, and is a ‘clone’ recipe of the Pliny the Elder double IPA (Russian River Brewing), which has been voted the #1 craft beer in America for the last several years.  I brewed this over a week ago, and just “racked” (transferred) to secondary today in order to dry hop before kegging.  For those who don’t know, bittering hops are generally added early in the boil process to bitter the beer (and typically have a higher beta value and balance the sweetness of the malt).  Later hop additions (including those added at secondary), are geared more towards flavor and aroma (and typically have a higher alpha value over the beta value).  I normally secondary/dry hop in a glass carboy, but don’t have one open right now, so as you can see on the right, I used one of my fermenting buckets.

imageAnyway, this brew has 14 total ounces of hops, added at three different stages.  This was an extract recipe, and I started out by steeping whole leaf hops with the specialty grains, then added hops during the boil, and finally added the last 5 ounces today in secondary.  The hops include: cascade, simcoe, columbus, and centennial, for a total of 200 IBUs (a measurement of bitterness – only about half of those IBUs will be able to be tasted).  I used Safale (US-05) as the dry yeast on this one.

Although I’m brewing a clone of Pliny the Elder (PTE), I’ve never tried PTE.  I’ve tried to pick some up, but no luck here in Virginia.  That may be a good thing, because if mine is way off I will never know!

I’m hoping to have this one kegged in a week or so, and be drinking it shortly after that (hopefully by Superbowl) along with my cream stout, and robust porter!

If you feel like brewing this one up, here’s the recipe.

Recipe notes: the Crystal 40 and 2oz. whole leaf Cascade hops get steeped as the temperature of your strike water rises to boil.  Remove them before 170 degrees (to avoid tannin release).  The corn sugar gets added 10 minutes before flamout.  As always, if you have any questions feel free to comment below and I will respond.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
5 gal 90 min 197.5 IBUs 7.5 SRM 1.078 1.014 8.4 %
Actuals 1.078 1.01 9.0 %


Name Amount %
Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L 6.08 oz 3.49
Light Dry Extract 8 oz 4.6
LME Golden Light (Briess) 9 lbs 82.72
Corn Sugar (Dextrose) 1 lbs 9.19


Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Cascade 2 oz 90 min Mash Leaf 5.5
Magnum 2 oz 90 min Boil Pellet 12
Simcoe 1 oz 45 min Boil Pellet 13
Columbus (Tomahawk) 1 oz 30 min Boil Pellet 14
Centennial 2 oz 0 min Boil Pellet 10
Simcoe 1 oz 0 min Boil Pellet 13
Columbus (Tomahawk) 3 oz 6 days Dry Hop Pellet 14
Centennial 1 oz 6 days Dry Hop Pellet 10
Simcoe 1 oz 6 days Dry Hop Pellet 13


Name Amount Time Use Type
Malto-Dextrine 1.00 lb 90 min Boil Other
Whirlfloc Tablet 1.00 Items 5 min Boil Fining


Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
Safale American (US-05) DCL/Fermentis 77% 59°F - 75°F


Step Temperature Time
Mash In 150°F 75 min

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