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I haven't found a global agreement on these topics. Let's suppose that the yeast is American (such as Safale US-05). Then:

  • Which is the ideal (primary) fermentation temperature for an IPA and why?

  • Which is the ideal temperature for an IPA placed in secondary with dry hopping and why?

10

Most Ales do well at 68°F primary, to limit phenols and undesirable esters made by yeast during growth phase.

Secondary can go up to the higher end of recommended temp of a strain since there isn't much left for yeast to feed on and it's at this time the yeast consume those byproducts made in primary. So the higher temp encourages yeast metabolism.

There is no adjustments needed for an IPA. It should be treated as any other Ale for ideal yeast conditions.

Us-05 has an ideal range of 59°F-71.6°F

Each yeast has its own esters, if you want to accentuate them, it is controlled by temp. Warmer generally gives more esters.

  • Thank you! If I don't want any esters in the beer, would you recommend a range between 62 and 65 F? I would increase it a little for dry hopping as you say. – andreshp Jan 14 '16 at 9:52
  • I have read in some places that low temperatures could lead to a higher FG than desirable. Is that true? In this case I suppose that increasing the temperature for dry hopping would avoid it. – andreshp Jan 14 '16 at 9:54
  • @andreshp lower temperatures slow the yeast metabolism for a cleaner longer fermentation. Get the data sheet for the yeast you're using. I wouldn't go below the ideal low temp for the yeast as it may make them go dormant early and cause underattenuation. – Evil Zymurgist Jan 15 '16 at 19:01
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There isn't an ideal temp for any of this. There is a recommended range offered by the manufacturer to help guide the end user towards a higher degree of success that something will ferment. As for US-05 yeast, I've heard of people using it at weird temps outside the "recommended" range and having success. But success for them may be different than success for you or me.

The ideal temp is what works for you. Some people may like to ferment warmer or cooler due to the flavors they get. As for dry hopping, its still a moving target dependent on preference. Some say cool, some say warmer.

Brewing can't be saddled into set numbers. Its about brewing an IPA a few times and seeing what works best for you.

  • Sure, it's all about your taste. Thank you! In my case, I like IPAs with a full hop profile with a little caramel. I don't like yeast flavors. In this case, would you recommend 64.4 F (18 C)? – andreshp Jan 14 '16 at 9:48
  • Fermenting in the mid 60sF is a good idea for reduced ester character. But you need to be pitching very healthy active yeast and maybe bump up the pitch rate a bit. Ester formation can also be controlled by pitch rate to some extent not just temperature. – brewchez Jan 14 '16 at 12:59
  • Keep in mind too that the modern day IPA tends to favor these new fruity hops. Ester formation somewhat supports that endpoint which is why some IPA brewers are using English ale yeasts to try and pair yeast/ferment derived esters with all these new hop oil profiles coming to market. – brewchez Jan 14 '16 at 13:01
  • Cool, thank you! I will be doing a black IPA with just Simcoe. I will try english yeast in another batch ^^ – andreshp Jan 15 '16 at 12:39
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Agreement with the two answers so far from EvilZymurgist and brewchez, but to address the dry hopping portion of the question: you should dry hop basically at fermentation temps, or, at least, not at cold-crash/serving temps, to maximize hop extraction.

  • Perfect. I will do the dry hopping and, afterwards, a cold-crashing. Thank you! – andreshp Jan 15 '16 at 12:42
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    @andreshp a warmer secondary realative to primary temp has a lot of benifiets in cleaning up ales. – Evil Zymurgist Jan 15 '16 at 19:04
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I use Safale US-05 often and go with a temperature of 66-68 degrees. I keep a digital thermometer in my brew/fermentation bag and throw in a couple of small frozen water bottles. I check it about every 12 hours or so and once I get to 68 degrees I replace the bottles.

But as most have already said, that works for me.

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My first brew was a Pale Ale and I used Safale US-05. From what I read, fermenting outside the range recommended by the manufacturer should give you some off flavors, but since my temperature controller hadn't arrived in time for my first brew, I fermented at room temperature ~25-26°C and it was fine.

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