Homebrew Batch #3: Black IPA / Cascadian Dark Ale

I like Black IPAs (aka Cascadian Dark Ales) and have been sampling as many as I can find.  So for my third homebrew, I finally decided to make my own Black IPA.  I've learned a lot from my first two brews and am looking forward to a great batch of beer!

Here are the details:
  • Style:  Black IPA / Cascadian Dark Ale
  • Malt Base:  Briess Golden Light liquid malt extract
  • Specialty Grains:  Carafa III, English Crystal 50-60L, Crystal 120L, Roasted Barley
  • Hops:  Zeus 13.5% alpha acid (bittering) & Citra 13.4% alpha acid (aroma & dry hopping)
  • Yeast:  Safale US-05

Brew Log:
Color of Wort During the Boil
Nov 14:  Brew day.  I used my home made wort chiller and used it to cool the wort in just 23 minutes!  It took me 9 hours to cool my first batch and 3 hours to cool my second.  I liked the much shorter process and hope it improves the quality of the beer.  We'll see.  OG 1.057.   Wort is a very dark brown, but not quite black.  I didn't get a chance to taste it. 
Nov 15:  On cue, the airlock is bubbling nicely!  I'm always nervous until I see this in action.  Based on the Beer Calculus web site, this beer should be 7.5% ABV and 50 IBU.  I'll calculate the final numbers after bottling.
Nov 19:  Airlock is still bubbling steadily.  I've been carefully controlling the feremenation temperture, keeping within 60-65 degrees.  I expect primary will take longer than it did for my first two batches were fermented at > 75 degrees.

Nov 27:  Primary fermentation is finally finished!  While it took much longer than expected, I hope that my carefully controlled temperature will result in a better beer.  Transferred it to secondary and dry-hopped with 2 oz. of Citra.  Expect to bottle in 10-12 days.

End of Primary Fermentation

Dec 11:  Bottled it.  The dry hopping gives it a really strong citrus and floral aroma!  Very nice.  It tastes good too, but is a touch sweeter than I expected.  I think some bottle conditioning time will help smooth it out.  I have high hopes for this one!  Based on my FG 1.02, this should be 4.9% ABV. 

Dec 21 '10:  1st taste.  It's carbonated.  Tan head with nice retention.  Wow!  The dry-hopping with Citrus hops has given it a really nice citrus & spicy aroma.  This is going to be a good one!!!

Feb 19 '12:  I just finished the last two bottles from this batch. I brewed this about 15 months ago and it has held up really well. The sharp hoppy bite and roasted malt flavors were still bright. This was a solid beer and I'm thrilled with how it turned out. I love this style and will brew another CDA (this time all-grain) soon.

Do any experienced folks have recommendations about fermentation temperatures?  Is it better to ferment at lower temperatures?  What's the benefit?  I've been told between 60-70 degrees is ideal.  I'd really appreciate some advice!

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Dry Hopped and in Secondary


  1. Outstanding beer --- VERY dark in color ... hops are definitely in play here. What an outstanding brew. Top notch dark IPA.

  2. Thanks for the nice review! Out of my three hombrews, this is my favorite. So are the good folks at TriFecta getting the itch to brew their own beer?

  3. Can you provide the quantity needed for each ingredient?


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