Homebrew Recipes By: Alex Marsh

With fair season coming into full swing for most of the country, I thought I’d write about my homebrew entries from last year’s Great Frederick Fair. Like most of my local competitions, the fair judging takes the BJCP categories and groups them into more broad categories for easier judging. My Independence Day IPA and McGaughan’s Hefe took 2nd and 3rd in the Pale Ale and Wheat beer categories, respectively.

Homebrew Recipe #1 – Independence Day IPA

This still stands as the hoppiest beer I have brewed to date and I am looking forward to brewing it again when I get the chance. A very simple malt bill of 2-Row, Victory, and Special roast back up the hops with bready complexity but do not leave any cloying sweetness or caramel flavors some IPA malt bills can have. The hops are what is on show here, and there are a lot of them. Amarillo, Centennial, and Simcoe have all the American hop goodness you could want.


  • 10 lbs. American 2-Row
  • 2 lbs. Victory Malt
  • 1 lbs.  Special Roast
  • 1 oz. Warrior 16% AA {60 Minutes}
  • .5 oz. Amarillo 8.5% AA {20 Minutes}
  • .25 oz. Simcoe 13% AA {20 Minutes}
  • 1 Whirlfloc Tablet {15 Minutes}
  • 1 oz. Amarillo 8.5% AA {Whirlpool}
  • 1 oz. Simcoe 13% AA {Whirlpool}
  • 1 oz. Centennial 10% AA {Whirlpool}
  • 2 (or appropriate starter) White Labs WLP001 California Ale
  • 1 oz. Amarillo 8.5% AA {Dry Hop}
  • 1 oz. Simcoe 13% AA {Dry Hop}
  • 1 oz. Centennial 10% AA {Dry Hop}

Mash at 152° for 60 minutes and sparge with 5 gallons of water at 168° to collect approximately 7.5 gallons of wort pre-boil.

Boil for 60 minutes adding hops and Whirlfloc at the appropriate times. The Warrior used for bittering could be substituted with any other clean high-alpha bittering hop or even a CO2 hop extract should you be so inclined.

Here’s where it gets interesting, after flameout do not immediately add the whirlpool hops. First, cool the wort to below 180° and then add the whirlpool addition. Give it a good stir, put the lid on and let steep for 20 minutes. If you have a fancy system with plate chiller, pumps, and whirlpool inlets this is pretty easy. If not, an immersion chiller and spoon work just fine and is exactly what I used. After the 20 minute steep continue chilling, move to a fermenter and pitch the yeast at 67°.

Ferment for 9 days at 67° and then add the dry hops. You can transfer to a secondary fermenter for this, or you can just dry hop in the primary. I dry hopped in the primary because I happen to be lazy and with all the hops, this is not going to be the most crystal clear beer anyways. After 5 days of dry hop keg or bottle and carbonate as you will. Aim for 2.3 volumes of CO2.


  • OG: 1.063
  • FG: 1.011
  • ABV: 6.8%
  • IBU: 98

Homebrew Recipe #2 – McGaughan’s Hefe

Not your average Hefeweizen, but this was not created for your average friend. I asked my best friend if he’d like to make beer for his birthday and this was the recipe we came up with. He specifically wanted lemon and seeds of paradise, so we put those in with a simple 50/50 barley/wheat malt bill to let them shine. I reserved a 6 pack for myself and he (with some help from family) drank the other case and ¾ the weekend they were done carbonating.


  • 4.5 lbs. American 2-Row
  • 4.5 lbs. White Wheat Malt
  • .5 lbs.  Rice Hulls (to prevent a stuck sparge)
  • 1 oz. Centennial 10% AA {30 Minutes}
  • 1g Seeds of Paradise {5 Minutes}
  • .75 oz. Cascade 8.9% AA {Flameout}
  • Zest of 2 Lemons {Flameout}
  • 1 Vial White Labs WLP320 American Hefeweizen Ale

Mash at 150° for 75 Minutes and sparge with 5.15 gallons of water at 168° to collect approximately 7 gallons of wort pre-boil.

Boil 60 minutes adding hops and spices at the specified times. Chill to 67° pitch the yeast, and ferment at 67° for 2 weeks. After fermentation, as usual, bottle or keg and carbonate as you will, aiming for 2.5 volumes of CO2.


  • OG: 1.046
  • FG: 1.008
  • ABV: 5%
  • IBU: 28

Cheers! Alex

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