What about an Imperial English IPA?

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by Derranged, Jul 30, 2013.

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  1. Derranged

    Derranged Devotee (438) Mar 7, 2010 New York

    I realize this isn't a recognized style, and English IPA is often overlooked and overshadowed by American IPA which I'm not a big fan of. (I know, I've been called crazy on this site for preferring English over American).

    But has anyone ever brewed what can be considered an Imperial English IPA, can it be done and is it something you'd be interested to see? Or is "Imperial" not a very meaningful word..?
  2. rather

    rather Aspirant (202) May 31, 2013 California

    hm interesting question. I'm not fully appreciative of English ipa due to the west coast blowing my palate up but I would like to try more English ipa especially an imperial/double
  3. Crazy4LegMoose

    Crazy4LegMoose Initiate (0) Jun 24, 2008 Massachusetts

    Couldn't you cellar an american imperial IPA for a few years and it would turn into an english IPA? I mean if you get a good one with a complex malt profile?
  4. Eriktheipaman

    Eriktheipaman Savant (952) Sep 4, 2010 California

    Stone 14th Anny was an Imp English IPA if I remember correctly.
  5. SaCkErZ9

    SaCkErZ9 Poo-Bah (2,566) Feb 27, 2005 South Carolina

  6. bpfrush

    bpfrush Champion (851) Jan 24, 2009 Wisconsin

    Three Floyd's Blackheart might fit the bill here as well.
  7. utopiajane

    utopiajane Poo-Bah (2,556) Jun 11, 2013 New York

    Schlafly made a nice english style ale pale ale that I thought was very nice. Yang is also not an american style ipa.
  8. Derranged

    Derranged Devotee (438) Mar 7, 2010 New York

    Thanks for the responses. Now that I think about it, Meantime IPA could qualify.
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  9. MCDub

    MCDub Aspirant (228) Dec 17, 2009 North Carolina

    johnsonni and russpowell like this.
  10. tdm168

    tdm168 Poo-Bah (3,284) Aug 10, 2010 Pennsylvania

    I really liked the Highland Imp. Kashmir. As did the bros in the last BA mag.
  11. beastmammoth

    beastmammoth Initiate (0) Oct 16, 2010 New York

    I think it's probably hard to make because English hops have much lower alpha oil content so you'd have to add an insane amount of them.

  12. bfields4

    bfields4 Zealot (586) Dec 11, 2007 Colorado

    I liked stone's 14th anny. I know it was kind of hit or miss for people. Too bad can't find it around anymore. Odell's IPA has more of that herbal, noble, floral quality for me, and I like it a lot for a change of pace.. actually it just really kicks ass.
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  13. TheGator321

    TheGator321 Initiate (0) May 29, 2013 Connecticut

    imperial English india pale ale is the style.

    is there any difference between the two countries version of the same style other than the hops variety and country of origin?
  14. TheGator321

    TheGator321 Initiate (0) May 29, 2013 Connecticut

    Tralfagar's Imperial IPA is actually from Britain. I seen it here and there in the states.
  15. marquis

    marquis Champion (801) Nov 20, 2005 England

    Have a look at this, Scottish rather than English and not called an IPA. But with an SRM of 3 and 105 IBUs it looks a bit like one. Despite the low alpha acids in the hops the Victorians hopped massively; computed IBUs of 250 or more for some beers.
  16. Flibber

    Flibber Initiate (0) Jul 27, 2013 England

    There are "imperial" strength IPAs in England, like Magic Rock's Human Cannonball, but I'm not sure what "English IPA" means as a style. If I look at the style description on this site it lists all sorts of beers, from the very English Worthington's White Shield to the very American Goose Island IPA.
  17. Aye

    Aye Initiate (0) Jul 21, 2011 England

    Younger's Number 3 was my go to beer from Scottish & Newcastle's cask range, haven't encountered the resurrected version sadly.
  18. Danny1217

    Danny1217 Champion (826) Jul 15, 2011 Florida

    There are a couple of English hops with high alpha acid content. UK Admiral hops apparantly have between 13%-16%, so you can definitely get some good bittering with that. Or you could cheat and use a high alpha acid American hop to get the bitterness early in the boil, since the bittering addition doesn't contribute too much flavor anyway.
  19. Chinon01

    Chinon01 Initiate (0) Jan 23, 2007 Pennsylvania

    Try an English Old Ale like Vintage Fullers. If you like big ales its your beer.
  20. spoonhawk

    spoonhawk Initiate (0) Dec 3, 2010 Iowa

    Three Floyds Blackheart
  21. marquis

    marquis Champion (801) Nov 20, 2005 England

    You can get masses of hop flavour and bitterness from ordinary English hops. Brewers have been on record as using 10 or 11 pounds of hops per barrel.
  22. SaCkErZ9

    SaCkErZ9 Poo-Bah (2,566) Feb 27, 2005 South Carolina

    You can do that, say use 10oz of Fuggle for a 5 gallon batch of beer, but the beer ends up tasting like a wet lawn with dog poop. Trust me, I have tried to make it before. In my experience, English hops with lower AA% like Fuggle, EKG, etc. are horrible for attempting to make an Imperial English IPA.
  23. kdb150

    kdb150 Devotee (452) Mar 8, 2012 Pennsylvania

    Perhaps you were doing it wrong.
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  24. Dennoman

    Dennoman Initiate (0) Aug 20, 2011 Belgium

    I'd like to christen a style called Stop Doing Imperial Everything.
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  25. ThirstyFace

    ThirstyFace Initiate (0) Jan 11, 2013 New York

    Schlafly does. I would classify Coomodore Perry as one.
  26. monkeybeerbelly

    monkeybeerbelly Initiate (0) Dec 6, 2012 New York

  27. dougfur

    dougfur Initiate (0) Jan 24, 2011 New York

    I guess I'd have to know what you mean by "English IPA"? Are you referring to the origin of the ingredients, or the style? I think of an English style IPA meaning that the hops are used more for bittering and less for aroma/flavor. If you accept that definition, I think there are lots of big "English IPA's" out there, even in the US.
  28. Derranged

    Derranged Devotee (438) Mar 7, 2010 New York

    I guess by the standard definition according to this site.
  29. Derranged

    Derranged Devotee (438) Mar 7, 2010 New York

    That sounds like a good name for a new, sessionable lager. I'm stealing it.
  30. TravisR

    TravisR Initiate (136) Dec 31, 2012 New Jersey

    Yards' IPA is an English IPA, and though it's not specified I consider Cape of Good Hope an Imperial English IPA. I don't see why not since almost everything else in Yards' stable is an English style brew.
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  31. kingofhop

    kingofhop Initiate (0) May 9, 2010 Oklahoma

    Jack up the hops and increase the ABV and *voila* you have Impy. Not necessarily impressed.
  32. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,771) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Yeah- pretty much the hops and malt would define it, though the more fruity yeast signature and even overall composition would also play major roles. If you are starting your definition of 'Imperial' at around 7%, then Meantime would definitely fit the bill. Brooklyn East India Pale Ale also comes to mind- I thought it was higher than 6.9% (maybe they have changed it over the years), but when it originally came out they made a point of how it was modeled after the Hodgson-era IPAs in England, which were much higher in strength than modern times. It still has a nice East Kent Goldings character, from what I recall.
  33. djsmith1174

    djsmith1174 Disciple (327) Aug 21, 2005 Minnesota

    How about Stop Having Imperial Tendencies?
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  34. marquis

    marquis Champion (801) Nov 20, 2005 England

    IPAs were never strong , the notion that they were lies in the general strength reduction which occurred in British brewing so they appear strong by modern standards. 7% would be the upper limit and most were considerably weaker.
    Nobody brews comparable beers now.Everybody fixes on the extra hopping but forgets the extreme attenuation and resulting dryness , the maturation time and conditions and the probable presence of Brett.
    You mentioned Meantime ; https://zythophile.wordpress.com/2010/06/17/ipa-the-hot-maturation-experiment/
    Not to say that stronger heavily hopped pale Ales didn't exist then, the Victorians brewed pretty well everything that exists today but they wouldn't have been termed IPA.
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  35. harrymel

    harrymel Initiate (0) Dec 15, 2010 Washington

    I see what you did there. You made it so the acronym would be S.H.I.T. !
  36. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,051) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

  37. Lutter

    Lutter Initiate (0) Jun 30, 2010 Texas

    LOVED this beer when it was out. It was the first one that popped into my mind. They called it an Emperial IPA, IIRC (British Empire, get it?) I picked up one that was a year old (kept refridgerated... and in the $5.xx range marked down) and that was surprisingly still excellent.
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  38. TongoRad

    TongoRad Poo-Bah (2,771) Jun 3, 2004 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    Thanks for the Martyn Cornell article; I rather enjoyed reading it. I would have expected more oxidation myself- maybe that says a something about Meantime's bottling procedures as well as the style of beer they make.

    The Brooklyn EIPA was introduced in 1994-ish, though, and our understanding of the beers of that period have no doubt improved since then. The Durden Park Beer Club (also mentioned in Martyn's article) had published a recipe for 'Original IPA' in Terry Foster's book Pale Ale earlier in the 90s, and I expect that Garrett Oliver would have known about it at the time. It was for a 1.070 o.g. beer, and his EIPA clocked in right around there. Maybe that seems like the upper limit today, but I do remember that back in the 90s we thought of it as being pretty typical.
  39. Flashy

    Flashy Zealot (546) Oct 22, 2003 Vermont

    English barley wine?
  40. 5thOhio

    5thOhio Zealot (510) May 13, 2007 South Carolina

    Commodore Perry is an excellent example of an English IPA, but it's not an "imperial."
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