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I really enjoy my IPA with Citra hops. I have done some minimal dry-hopping which gives me a great citrus flavor and aroma, in addition to adding cascade and citra to the boil. I have no aversion to dry-hopping, but am still working to get my arms around all the facets of brewing and how they affect the outcome. Can you get similar results to dry-hopping by adding that additional 1 oz of Citra near the end of the boil or are we talking apples and oranges, so to speak? Thanks.

This is a partial grain extract 5 gallon recipe

.5 lb Belgian Aromatic Malt 15-30 Minutes @ 155F

"60 Minute Boil"

1 lb Gold DME & 1 lb Wheat DME, 1 oz Warrior & 1 oz Cascade hops, boil 45 minutes,then add...

6 lb Gold LME, boil for 10 minutes, then add...

1 oz Citra hops boil for 5 minutes

Liquid American Ale II Wyeast

1 oz Citra dry hopping 5 days prior to bottling

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If you don't mind, I'm a sucker for Citra hops and love to see other's recipes that use them. Any chance you could add your recipe to the question? –  Scott Feb 6 at 20:32
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2 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

In my experience, dry-hopping is more important for aroma than flameout additions, unless you either go overboard with your flameout quantities or you do a hopstand. You may get a very slight bit more flavor out of a flameout addition, but my palette can't detect the difference.

During fermentation, the CO2 will carry a lot of the aroma with it as it escapes the fermenting wort, thus reducing the aromatics of the beer's hop character from what it was before fermentation begins. Especially for the Citra hop, which has a very distinctive aroma, your IPA will benefit from a good dry-hopping more than it would a flameout addition.

If you're looking for "the next steps" for your IPA, here's some advanced techniques for you to try out:

From my experience, Citra is a very pleasant hop to use, especially for the above two advanced techniques, as it does not impart a harsh bitterness at high IBU extraction. For my palette at least, I have yet to add too much Citra hops to an ale, so you can take comfort and likely not have to worry about overdoing it. Without knowing your recipe, here's a few tips I could recommend for your next experiment:

  • (If it's an all-grain recipe) move your 60 or 90 minute hop addition (whichever it is) to a first wort hopping as described in the above article.
  • At flameout, add your flameout hops, and separate a portion of the beer (could be a 50/50 split, or 75/25, whichever you prefer). Chill the separated batch as normal, but let the other portion sit and do a 30 minute hop stand at high temperature, as described by the above article. You may even consider adding another hop charge 15 minutes into the hop stand for an extra aromatic kick. Now you have a control, and a experiment sample to draw from so you can see the difference between hop stand and no hop stand.
  • Dry hop both. If you want to go crazy, double up your dry hops, but layer them. Add your normal amount of dry hops, then at the 3 day mark, add the second set of hops and let them both sit until day six at which point you rack to bottles or keg for consumption.

The above will increase the amount of hops necessary, but as mentioned before, Citra is very forgiving if you go overboard, which I tend to with it, only to wind up grinning wider for when all is said and done. You'll know it all paid off when you can smell it across the room!

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Should be noted as I made a critical error in my suggestions. Take your 60/90 minute hops and move those to a first wort hop addition, not a hop stand. That incorrect suggestion would potentially significantly alter the IBU's of your recipe. –  Scott Feb 6 at 19:57
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The differences between FO additions and dry hopping are subtle and seem to be palate/taster dependent. I have experiment with both and it becomes a matter of personal tastes.

The best thing to do is if you are planning a string of hoppy beer brewing try and use both techniques on different brews and see what you like and if it makes a difference to you.

I made an IPA last year where I did two ounce of Falconers Flight hops at FO, but I also did an overnight "no chill" technique. I then dry hopped with more falconers at kegging. I have since tried to replicate the beer again, but using my standard chilling process. Its been tough to get back to that original effect. Regardless of how much hop I add at flameout or dry hop.

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