Last year I bought a pound of Simcoe thinking that this hop will be used quickly in a bunch of IPAs I was planning to brew. My brews have been less toward the hop side and more malt, thus leaving the rest of my pelletized Simcoe to hibernate in my freezer. Unfortunately, I have yet to invest in a good vacuum sealer, and although my hops are being stored cold and in the dark, they are exposed to oxygen and will degrade in freshness quickly. My Back to Basics IPA was also to clear out excess hop material. This BYO article provides some good information on hop storage.
Since I’m only using one type of hop, this is a perfect opportunity to explore the qualities of Simcoe through a SMaSH – Single Malt and Single Hop beer. Some common descriptors of Simcoe include pine, citrus, and passionfruit. Supposedly, the hop has a low cohumulone level that provides a smoother bitterness. Some commercial examples of an all Simcoe beer would be Weyerbacher’s Double Simcoe IPA and Kuhnhenn’s Simcoe Silly. I have tried only the former and found massive amounts of pine, wood, earth, and aspirin-like hop flavor. I wasn’t crazy about the beer to begin with (too cloyingly sweet) and did not find any citrus-like flavors or smells. My brew is not completely a SMaSH; I added some dextrin malt for body and head retention.
Recipe (6.5 gallons – wort adsorption from hops):
- 14 pounds Maris Otter malt (Crisp).
- 1 pound Carapils (Briess).
Mashed in with 19.5 qts of water at temperature of 150°F for one hour. Recirculated, collected first runnings and batch sparged with 4.18 gallons of 180°F water (mashout at 170°F). Boiled wort for 60 minutes and added:
- 1.25 oz Simcoe (pellet, 12.2% AA) – 37.4 IBUs at 60 minutes
- 2.0 oz Simcoe (pellet, 12.2% AA) – 11.9 IBUs at 5 minutes
- 2.0 oz Simcoe (pellet, 12.2% AA) – 0 minutes (flameout)
- 2.0 oz Simcoe (leaf, 14.1% AA) – dry hop in the keg for three weeks at 35°F
- 6.0 grams of gypsum added at the beginning of boil.
- 1/2 tsp yeast nutrient (15 mintues).
- 1 Whirlfloc tablet (15 minutes).
Cooled wort to 64°F and aerated with pure oxygen for 2 minutes. Pitched 270 billion cells of WLP 090 – San Diego Super Strain.
IBUs: ~ 50