Double-Hopped Jamaican Hot Chocolate IPA

It’s been a while since I’ve brewed a batch of beer (or updated this blog for that matter), my kegs are empty, it’s cold outside, so what better way to spend a few hours than brewing a beer? My favorite kind of beer is an IPA. I’m a hop head and I’ve found that it’s best just to brew what you enjoy the most. I also enjoy a good spicy dish, and since a good friend of mine has recently been making his own hot sauces, I figured I would combine the two tastes in one awesome beer.

I was initially going to try to do a Habanero IPA, but my buddy convinced me to try a different style of pepper that is a little more fruity. He brought me a Red Savina and a Jamaican Hot Chocolate and asked me to smell both. After doing so, the choice was clear, I was going to use Jamaican Hot Chocolates for this recipe (however, I threw in a Red Savina because I didn’t want to see the one he cut open go to waste).

First step, steep the grains (1 lb. Caramel 20L) and make wort. Basically, just steep the grains while you are heating your water. I steep mine for ~20 minutes at 155°-160° F.

Steeping Grains
Steeping Grains

After the steeping has commenced, you will have some of your fermentable sugars in the form of wort. The rest of the fermentable sugars in my brew will from adding liquid malt extract (LME).

Wort after grains had been steeped
Wort after grains had been steeped

Hops are a funny thing. Some are for bittering, some are for aroma, and both can be altered based on how long you boil them . I have Cascade Hops for bittering and Willamette for aroma.

Beautiful Things
Beautiful Things

I added the Cascade hops (I purchased an extra bag in addition to what came with the kit) at the beginning of the boil because I want the full 60 minutes to really bring out the hoppiness of them.

Cascade Hops
Cascade Hops
All 84g of them
All 84g of them

 

After adding the hops
After adding the hops

After adding the Cascade hops and 3.3 lbs of LME, I boiled for 40 minutes. At the 40 minute mark, I added an additional 3.3 lbs LME. It was starting to look lovely. At this point, I decided to pour myself a little bourbon.

Hops & LME
Hops & LME
A little bourbon for sippin'
A little bourbon for sippin’

With 10 minutes left in the boil, I added three Jamaican Hot Chocolate Peppers and one Red Savina. They smelled absolutely awesome while boiling.

Peppers
Peppers

With 5 minutes left, I added the Willamette hops. After terminating the boil, I cooled the wort and pitched my yeast. Today, I went to check the beer to see if the yeast was doing its thing yet, and sure enough, she was bubblin’.

Bubblin'
Bubblin’

A month from now, I’ll get to see how it turns out. A friend made a good point about the peppers: “If it’s not good for drinking, it will make excellent beer cheese.”

Now we wait.
Now we wait.

Let’s hope I don’t end up making 5 gallons of beer cheese.