Modern and traditional collide in this bitter-sweet fusion…
A Kolsch-style hybrid IPA - is there even such a thing? Well, now yes, there is…
It went from Kolsch, to Kolsch-Style, to German IPA, and we finally settled on Continental IPA! The decision revolves around us wanting to be as free as possible when it comes to what the future versions of this brew will consist of.
Right now though, for V1 we’ve got an (almost) all-German line-up consisting of a Kolsch yeast strain; a grain bill leaning on the light colours; aroma hops Huell Melon and Mandarina Bavaria, with the latter doing 80% of the work; and a water profile emulating that of Koln, Germany.
Tasting Notes: Mandarina Bavaria is an amazing hop: tangerine, mandarine, bergamot, ponkan, mexerica - this is what’s going to hit you on the nose from the very start! Fear not though, a gentle malty backbone is right there to balance things out just nicely.
Character: Crisp and hoppy, light and focussed on those aforementioned hops - great creamy head too!
Process: We mashed in at the lower end to get it nice and dry, leaving the body to be dictated by a generous portion of Carafoam in the grain bill. Acidulated grain was added too to bring that pH down a bit.
After that, a boil where Comet (the only non-German element) went in for bittering, followed by Huell Melon and Mandarina Bavaria at flame-out.
Once everyone was in the FV, primary took a couple of weeks, including dry-hopping twice with Mandarina Bavaria. Conditioning at zero in the brite tank took all of 3 months to get it right where we wanted. The Kolsch strain has great characteristics - from its crisp finish to a subtle honey emphasis - but there’s no use in speeding things up with her, time is always the key.
For future versions, we might try out another group of yeast strains that we got wind of recently, hence the final name of the brew being Continental IPA. Ale strains from continental Europe that are not too style-specific but still full of character, just like the Kolsch used in this V1!
Available: Keg | Key-Keg