Brew one, get one free (well, sort of).

Ever felt like brewing an IPA but also felt impatient to have a good beer to drink while it takes weeks to mature? Then why not make two beers from the same wort – an IPA and a hoppy bitter? Try this recipe – I used Bouclier hops at 7% alpha, but you could substitute for any favourite characterful hop such as Bramling Cross or maybe something from the US or the Antipodes. This is the full recipe for some beers I mentioned in the post about the Rebel Home Brew club.

You can make this as an extract brew by substituting 3000g/2580g of liquid/dry malt extract for the Pale Malt, heating your liquor to 40C, adding the malt extract – plus the Crystal Malt in a muslin bag – and bringing to the boil. When it starts to boil, remove the grain bag and start adding hops…

For 23l – OG 1054 (for main IPA wort).


  • Pale Malt        4000g
  • Crystal Malt      335g
  • Sugar                  480g (add at 45 mins)

Burtonise your liquor and mash /sparge to your usual schedule to collect enough wort for 23l plus extra for evaporation.

Hops and other bits:

  • 90 mins: Challenger (8.5%) – 28g
  •                  Bouclier (7%) – 27g
  • (45 mins  add sugar (turn off boiler to avoid caramelisation, and/or make into a syrup before adding)).
  • 30 mins: Bouclier 18g
  • 10 mins: East Kent Goldings 18g
  •                  Irish Moss 5g

Chill to 20C then run off 10l of gyle into a fermenting vessel and dilute with approx 2l of sterile liquor or packaged water to reduce SG to c. 1042.

Run off remaining gyle into another FV.

Pitch suitable yeasts (e.g. Nottingham, Safale 04 or something British and liquid) – feel free to use different yeasts for each gyle, and after about four days dry hop the lower gravity bitter with 18g EKG, preferably in a weighted, muslin bag (weight and bag must be sterilised by boiling for 15 mins).

You’ll have plenty of delightful, gently hoppy, bitter to distract you from drinking the robust IPA before it’s at its prime. Obviously, you can tweak the proportions of bitter-to-IPA you get from the wort, and there are plenty of other variables to play with, but hey – do the maths yourself ;).

If you try this then let us know how you get on – either here on the blog or via Facebook.


Nick Written by:

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