Office brew: DIPA

This month my brother Connor, his boyfriend Pete and I find ourselves trying to brew a beer on our Grainfather with the theme ‘Manchester’.


This month my brother Connor, his boyfriend Pete and I find ourselves trying to brew a beer on our Grainfather with the theme ‘Manchester’. “What is a Manchester themed beer?” we ponder. Racking our brains, we think of all the things we know about this great city of the North.

It is, most obviously, the music city that gave birth to The Smiths, Joy Division and New Order, The Happy Mondays, The Stone Roses and, perhaps those most Mancunian of brothers, the Gallaghers.

Aside from its famed musical legacy, the city is home to an array of British institutions: everything from Coronation Street to Anthony Burgess (author of The Clockwork Orange), City and United football clubs, Marks & Spencer, Rolls-Royce and Vimto.

Although admittedly tempted by the challenge of brewing a Vimto beer, we decide to park that idea for the time being and instead take inspiration from Manchester’s most famous modern brewer, Cloudwater. Having rocketed to the top 10 brewers in the world on RateBeer within just two years of opening, its DIPA series has won fans around the world.

First stop on our DIPA odyssey is Edinburgh’s Brew Store (, where the everhelpful Theo gives us some great advice for this month’s project. He’s excited to know that we’re going to brew a Cloudwater-inspired Double IPA and promptly brings us a bottle of his own. “Something like this?” he asks, handing us a glass of juicy, murky, hoppy beer. It’s exactly what we have in mind. Loaded up with malt, sugar, a hell of a lot of hops and a vial of Vermont ale yeast, we head back to HQ to start our brew.


We start by filling the Grainfather with water and getting it up to the target mash temperature of 67 degrees Celsius. Carefully stirring in the flaked oats and malted barley, to avoid it clumping together, we also add sugar to give the yeast enough fuel to get us up to our target ABV of 8%. On Theo’s recommendations, we also add a teaspoon of calcium chloride, which will help to bring out the juicy flavours of the hops.

After mashing, we lift the grain basket to sit on top of the Grainfather, and pour additional hot water through it to drain out every last drop of sweetness from the grains.

Discarding the grain, we are left with the liquid wort. To this, we add a very small amount of bittering hops; 25g of Magnum pellets. Boiling for one hour, this will give our DIPA a slight bitterness, but nothing overwhelming.

After cooling to 80 degrees C, we add a mammoth haul of hops. Packing a punch with 300g of aroma hops in all, this is going to be one hell of a juice bomb. After cooling down to room temperature, we transfer this green, murky slurry into our carboy, being absolutely certain that everything that comes in contact with the beer has been boiled and sterilised from this point on. We shake up our little vial of yeast and pitch it into the mix (note: remove your yeast from the fridge three hours before pitching).

So, that’s it; we wish our yeast good luck and the three of us anxiously anticipate the chance to drink it together in a few weeks’ time.

LAST MONTH'S BREW - Newcastle Brown Ale

Last month, we tried our hands at recreating the famous Newcastle Brown Ale. A simple but enjoyable beer, it pours dark amber in colour with a light carbonation. We spend a lot of time drinking adventurous beer styles, so it was fun to revisit a classic, often underrated style.

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