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Make Your Best Double IPA

The style parameters here are actually pretty simple: very high ("…to absurdly high") bitterness, intense hops aroma and flavor (usually American or Australian or New World hops), with just enough malt character to provide some background and/or contrast.

Josh Weikert Jun 17, 2018 - 7 min read

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I don't know how many of these columns I've written by now, but I feel pretty confident that this will be the one I get the most "what kind of brain trauma has this idiot suffered that he thinks this is the best version?" e-mails about. Much like my disclaimer at the top of the American IPA piece, I'll preface this by saying that there are a lot of paths to the top of the mountain when it comes to Double IPA.

You may think I'm wrong here, and you may well be right, but I'll stand by this recipe as an as-good-as-any (and better than a lot) example. Double IPA is about more than just shoveling in hops. I don't actually think it's that controversial to state that I'm probably disappointed more often with commercial Double IPAs than any other style, especially when they're just a sweet, hot, bitter mess. I can't promise you you'll brew the next Pliny the Elder, but I can promise that this will get you close enough to your ideal Double IPA that you can adjust your recipe the rest of the way in.

STYLE

The basic style parameters here are actually pretty simple: very high ("…to absurdly high") bitterness, intense hops aroma and flavor (usually American or Australian or New World hops), with just enough malt character to provide some background and/or contrast. What is usually overlooked, though, is that this is not an intensely alcoholic beer. Strong to very strong versions exist, but the guidelines place the ABV range for Double IPA at 7.5-10 percent.

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