Upper Limit For Hopping An Apa

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Hop Whore
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Hi people,

I asked about this in another thread but I think its more appropriate to begin a new one.

In a couple of weeks I will be having another stab at doing a LCPA-like brew. I am after a really aromatic hoppy beer. Up until now the most I have hopped an APA is 2.8g/L for flavour (half at 20mins and the other half at 10mins) and another 2.8g/L for aroma. For that one I used Amarillo throughout. It tastes great and quite hoppy, but I don't reckon this hopping level is at the "saturation point" just yet!

For my quasi LCPA brew I plan on using 3g/L for flavour (probably 1g/L each at 30mins, 20mins and 10mins) and 4g/L for aroma (flameout). I'm the first to admit that on paper this seems like a lot of hops! But trying the last APA I made (using 2.8g/L) I reckon its still not quite as hoppy as LCPA.

Another potentially significant factor is that up until now I have been using british ale yeasts, but for this next brew I will be using White Labs East Coast Ale yeast, which may accentuate hop flavours a bit more. So many factors here!

Anyway, any help you guys could give me on this I would greatly appreciate.

The basic recipe I will be doing is as follows:

25L batch volume

4.75kg JW Ale malt
200g JW Dark Crystal malt

Goldings FWH to achieve final IBU of around 35
25g Cascade @ 30 mins
25g Cascade @ 20 mins
25g Cascade @ 10 mins
50g Cascade @ flameout
50g Amarillo @ flameout

WLP008 East Coast Ale yeast

Target OG: 1.053
Target FG: 1.010
Target colour: 16.5 EBC

Cheers! :)
My personal view is that 100g at flameout is OTT. My tastebuds couldn't handle that and I don't reckon you would be able to detect any malt. Even halving those amounts would satisfy a hophead. But gets down to personal tastes. I did an Amarillo APA with 25g at the finish and it was hoppy enough for me.

East Coast Ale is top all round yeast, and will work well.

I'd be using half those hops at flame out & dry hopping with the other half....
Thanks roach,

My last APA had 60g at flameout and its hoppy, but the aroma doesn't jump out at you like it does with LCPA. I don't know if that's because they use a hopback and I don't, but I just figured that I should bump up the hop levels and see what happens.

100g at flameout does sound like a hell of a lot though, I agree - maybe cut it back top 75g to match the total flavour addition...?
Thanks Ross,

In the back of my mind I did have the possibility of trying a hop tea with half the hops. What do you think of this? Dry hopping is also a definite option but I only have pellets, which I have heard are not the best for dry hopping.
Personally I would drop the 30min & 20min additions would probably go

14g @ 15min
14g @ 10min
28g @ 5min
28g @ flameout.

You can up the 15 & 10min ones if you want. I find that using cascade heavily for bittering can produce some flavours that overpower anything else. I just use a bittering hop such as NB and that at the end.

Many ways you can do it and it ultimately depends on your taste. If you just want to make a hop demon then just throw em all in :ph34r: I make one now and again but they can be heavy drinking.
TD - ive never had a problem dry hopping with pellets in secondary. 99.9% is left in secondary when racking to bulk prime and then nothing gets through when bottling. I have heard that dry hopping pilseners/lagers with saaz is a no-no as it gives a grassy taste? But you'll be right with APA and Amarillo. Suck it an see :beerbang:

As Steve says, dry hopping with American hop pellets is no problem at all. Most hoppy APA's are dry hopped, it's the best way of getting a full on aroma. Don't worry about bags, just throw them in loose at the secondary stage & they will sink on CC...
Thanks heaps guys.

This is the recipe that I'll do:

25L batch volume

5kg JW Ale malt
200g JW Dark Crystal malt

40g Goldings FWH (final overall IBU: 34.9)
25g Cascade @ 15 mins
25g Cascade @ 10 mins
25g Cascade @ 5 mins
50g Amarillo @ flameout
50g Cascade Dry Hopped for 14 days

WLP008 East Coast Ale yeast

Target OG: 1.050
Target FG: 1.010
Target colour: 16.6 EBC

Look good?
This is just my personal preference but I would dry hop with amarillo. I have used it a few times with great results. I have never dry hopped with cascade but have been told it can make the beer a bit grassy.

That's funny actually, the reason I chose to dry hop Cascade is because my experience with Amarillo so far has all been at flameout and I liked the results (so kinda similar tou you but totally opposite!). But you never get anywhere by doing things the same each time - I'll give dry hopping Amarillo a go and use the Cascade at flameout.

Something else I meant to ask - what do you all think about FWH-ing the goldings? Do you think it would be better to use them as a pure bittering addition (just a 60min boil, no FWH) or do you reckon the FWH will suit the beer well?

Thanks fellas! :beer:
you havent really hopped until your over 100 ibu.
did it last year on numerous beers.then your in the wacky american hop scene.its weird but not bad.ya gotta do it at least once to to see what there on about

big d
I tried a few American micro brews when I was in Canada last year. The brand I tried was called "Lagunitas". Fantastic beers - absolutely bursting with hops! That's the sort of stuff I want to brew. The most bitter I tried was their IPA which was around 47 IBU from memory. Didn't taste anywhere near that bitter though.

I'll stick with the hop schedule I have in the recipe above (except dry hopping the Amarillo instead of the Cascade) but I am so keen to push the hopping to the limit one day. Brew an American Amber Ale or something and use 5g/L and 50 IBUs or something. Just to see what it turns out like! The anticipation is killing me even now!
a few of us resident ahb members brewed the sister star of the sun apa last year.way way over the 100 ibu s from memory(120).one wild beer.
think my tounge is over it.

big d
May just be an absolute newb, but have you considered the influence of water chem on your brew? Perhaps the same amount of hops as your previous brew would give you a more face-thumping brew in the presence of a tsp or so of gypsum?

Can the more knowledgable audience members perhaps give more input?
Water quality can have a big effect on how much the hops flavours "come out" in the brew. Having said that, I am yet to use any additives to achieve a specific water hardness etc, so I am not really clued up on the specifics of how and why exactly this happens.
I love those high hopped ales, when you wake up the next day and can still taste the hops :)
I dry hop with seppo Cascade plugs and like the "big" aroma.

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