What the BRUT?!

What Is a Brut IPA??


You may have seen this new IPA sweeping your favorite beer bars and breweries.  It's SUPER dry, bursting with hop flavor and aroma, and has almost no bitterness.  On top of all of that, it's crystal clear!  Brut is a term long used in Champagne and Sparkling Wine to let consumers know that it's an extremely dry and crisp product.  Talk about a change from the haze craze, but what are the nuts and bolts behind this new beer?

Oh The Science

This new and exciting IPA, at first glance, seems like a super light, super clear West Coast IPA, but there's more to it.  What sets it apart is that there is NO residual sugar, and no early addition hops.  This is how it works.

When we are homebrewing, we utilize alpha and beta amylase in the mash, usually already primed in our base malts, to break the starch in the grain down to smaller, yeast fermentable sugars, along with some slightly bigger sugars that the yeast can't eat.  This is how we get our balance from beer style to beer style.  We mash at a higher temperature to leave some malt character behind, i.e. longer chain sugars that the yeast can't eat.  You mix this with your early addition hops, and your beer is (hopefully) balanced just the way you want.

These Brut IPA's are different, though.  We use a different amylase enzyme, called amyloglucosidase, or sometimes glucoamylase, which makes ALL of the starch fermentable by our yeasties!
Amyloglucosidase (get yours HERE!) has long been used by those who distill to ensure maximum yield in the mash, both at the professional level and the home level.  The best part of this enzyme is that you can add it to both the mash and the fermentation!  The dose is higher on the fermentation side, 2 to 4 oz per 5 gallons, but it works well, usually leaving you with a finishing gravity of 1.000.

Since there's no sugar to balance, you can completely ditch your bitter addition, and focus on the late addition and dry hops, which is wonderful!  I like to hop these like a New England IPA, big and bright and juicy, only crystal clear and dry as a bone!

I like to add in some Flaked Oats and Wheat Malt.  This helps with the perception of body and mouthfeel, as well as helping with head formation and foam retention while we still keep the intense dryness.




We've seen these Bruts from 5.5% abv to 9% abv, and there's definitely no wrong way to do it.  As long as your yeast can keep up, you can make these be as big as you want them to be!  For a baseline ingredient kit, we have outlined our Brut Single IPA below for you to try!

I Am BRÜT
Brut Single IPA
I Am Brut is a Single Brut IPA beer kit, dry and crisp and crushable.  It's busting with hop flavor and aroma, easy to make, and sure to be the next favorite flagship for your brewery!

All-Grain Recipe Kit
8 lbs American 2 Row
1 lb Flaked Oats
0.5 lbs White Wheat
0.5 lbs Flaked Rice
1 oz Gluco-Amylase in Mash

Extract Recipe Kit
6 lbs Pilsner Light Liquid Malt Extract added at 150° F
1 lb Flaked Oats
0.5 lbs White Wheat
0.5 lbs Flaked Rice
1 oz Gluco-Amylase for a rest at 150° F

Hop Schedule
1 oz Azacca at Flame Out
1 oz Citra at Flame Out
1 oz Idaho 7 at Flame Out

1 oz Azacca at Flame Out -10 Minutes (or Whirlpool)
1 oz Citra at Flame Out -10 Minutes (or Whirlpool)
1 oz Idaho 7 at Flame Out -10 Minutes (or Whirlpool)

2 oz Azacca as a dry hop for 5 days
2 oz Citra as a dry hop for 5 days
2 oz Idaho 7 as a dry hop for 5 days
Yeast
Wyeast 1056 American Ale, WLP001 California Ale, or Gigayeast Norcal #1.
3 oz Gluco-Amylase Pitched with the Yeast

You can use any highly attenuative yeast strain for this beer, but we love this strain because it helps push hops forward, and is a great workhorse in the brewhouse.  

Nuts & Bolts
All-Grain - Brew day for this IPA is pretty much the same, except you will add Glucoamylase in the mash and Glucoamylase in the fermenter to make sure that everything gets converted properly.  You will still see a standard, 14 day fermentation, so do your dry hops at day 9 and crash chill on day 14 like normal.

Extract – For the extract version of this recipe, we are going to change up process a little bit.  Instead of steeping your grains until 168° F, then bringing it to a boil and adding the LME, we are going to bring the water to 150° F, mix in the LME, then add the steeping grains and the Glucoamylase and allow everything 30 minutes to steep.  From there, heat to boiling and follow your normal process.  This will ensure proper conversion of all of the ingredients!

Flame Out and Whirlpool Hop Additions – For the Flame Out addition, add the hops when you kill the flame, but allow them to sit for 10 minutes before you add next addition.  For the Flame Out – 10 Minutes addition, add the second set of hops and allow them to steep while you cool the wort.  If you have the ability to Whirlpool your last hop addition, add your Flame Out Hops and allow them 10 minutes to steep, then lower the temperature of the wort to 180° F and Whirlpool for 20 minutes.  Both methods will give you big hop flavor!  Don't forget your Assassin Brewery Cleaner to clean up your kettle and your fermenter!!
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