The Collective Hoppiness recipe was written with brewing experimentation in mind. It’s a great recipe for changing one ingredient per batch to learn how that one variable affects the taste of the beer.
If you want to play with the yeast choices, I recommend sticking with one that’ll leave a little sweetness in the beer -- the recipe has very high amounts of alpha acids and a ridiculous 119.9 IBUs, according to Beer Smith. (Software such as Beer Smith, Beer Tools or Pro Mash is great for keeping track of IBUs and specific gravity variations from batch to batch as you change ingredients.)
The hops can be substituted as well. The recipe uses all high-alpha-acid hops in the boil to create some “shock & awe” in regards to the IBU scale. The alpha acids for the boil-addition hops are as follows: Columbus 14.4%, Summit 18.5%, Amarillo 8.5% Sorachi Ace 14.9%. I plan to use this recipe at home as a showcase for different hop flavors and their characteristics, by using a single hop for all additions.
The grain bill can be played around with as well. You could make the beer a lighter color (and flavor) for summertime, add spices for a winter warmer, add roasted malt to make a hoppy rye stout, etc. I personally love the peppery flavors of rye beers and would love to try different versions of rye malts (malted rye, crystal rye, flaked rye, etc).
If you want to change the grains, make sure to start the beer at a specific gravity of around 1.080.
Due to the high levels of bitterness and malt in this beer, it can certainly sit around for a couple of months (or more) of aging before serving. So feel free to add “time” to the list of variables you can experiment with for this beer. As a beer ages, its hop bitterness will subside and the malt flavors will become more prominent. This beer can handle those changes. It may even become more appealing to your taste buds after a bit of aging.
Have fun brewing and drinking this great beer! If you have any questions, reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
BrewerWynkoop Brewing Co.
Steep grains for 20 minutes at 150-160 Degrees Fahrenheit
Continuous Hop Additions
One Time Additions
*All times indicate how long that hop addition should be in the boil