Lager vs IPA

If you are a beer lover, you would have a specific choice among the different available options. So, are you someone who enjoys Lager or the bold IPAs? 

So, Lager vs IPA. The two beers are not only different in taste, but they have a pretty different look and manufacturing process. If you are looking for detailed information on these two beers, this article has you covered. 

The Lager

The word lager comes from a German word, which means store. It also implies maturation that is storing within the cold temperature. 

Lager vs IPA
Lager

Lager is a German-oriented beer that is fermented for a longer period of time. It approximately takes seven weeks to six months to process under such conditions. Some of the colors which you can find in this beer are amber, pale, or dark.

Read more about How to brew Lager at home.

The IPA 

The word IPA stands for Indian Pale Ale. If you enjoy a beer with higher alcohol content, then this is your option. It consists of alcohol between 4.5 and 17.2% and tastes quite bitter. Its bitterness level ranges between 25 and 120 IBU. 

The beer is also a mix of hops, which gives a distinguishable flavor. Most of the beer with IPA tastes bitter, earthy, piney, citrus, and fruity. It is an ideal option for all those who enjoy bitter flavors in their beer.

Read more about How to brew IPA at home

How IPA And Lager Are Different?

It comes with no surprise that these are two different brands of beer offering a different taste. Some of the main differences that you must know of these amazing beers are mentioned below:

Bitterness

The two have different bitterness units. The level of hop in IPA ranges between 40-60 IBU. In contrast, the Lager has a lower hop value which ranges between 20 to 40 IBU.

Yeast 

Another significant difference between the two beers is the yeast. While you brew Ale, it is suggested to ferment the yeast on the top. In contrast, while fermenting the Lager, you must use the bottom fermentation method. In this process, your Lager will come out as crispy and cleaner as compared to IPAs. 

The Temperature

The temperature is an important component while making the beer. The temperature for Ales must be 200C which is twice the temperature need for Lager. The temperature used for Lager is 120C. It is essential to note that the temperature can vary in a few of the conditions. 

Days 

After the fermentation process, it is essential to leave Lager for some days for it to be ready. However, this is not the scenario with IPA. Once you have completed the process of IPA ferments at a specific temperature, you can easily consume the beer. 

Though Lager takes more time for fermentation due to the lower temperature, it is not the same for steam lagers. Steam lagers ferment at a very fast rate which is quite similar to Ale. After five days of fermentation, they reach final gravity. 

Storing 

For storing Lager, you must have a laagering or a secondary vessel.  You need to store Lager at a temperature of 0-40C for approximately a week. At the same time, IPA is quite the opposite to Lager; it does not require a closed vessel to be stored. 

Alcohol By Volume(ABV)

One of the significant differences found in these two beers is the ratio of alcohol. The Lager comprises six per cent or less, whereas IPAs have a much higher ABV. You can find more than 6% or more ABV in IPAs, such as double and triple. 

Development Of Lagers 

In the early 1800s, Lager was first established in Northern Europe, Germany, Czech Republic, and Austria 3. Some of the most popular brands were found in these countries, including Helles, Vienna, and Pilsner. However, one of the main reasons for attaining all the limelight by the Lager was its low price.

In 1989 it gained popularity among women too due to its citrus flavor, crispiness, and drinkability. In the US, the Lager did not gain so much popularity as it did in the UK due to media. The media created an impression that the beer was cheap and easy to drink. 

People considered it as second-class beer. Although Heineken and Stella Artois became popular, it made no difference in the bad reputation of Lager. 

Later in 2016, the Lager gained more popularity as it was distributed in Europe by New York Brooklyn. Moreover, they reduced the percentage of alcohol to about 5%, which positively impacted the sales. 

Evolution Of IPAs 

During the 19th century, when the British troops were in India, they enjoyed consuming British Pale Ales. The drink then became popular in India, and the Ale was known as the Indian Pale Ale. 

The climate was too hot for beers to be manufactured in India. Similarly, the beers which were transported could not survive the environment and conditions of India. However, a British brewer tried to invent an October ale, a happy hoppy beer which was a success. The beer coped well with the Indian climate and conditions.

Several enterprises that attempted to imitate Hudson’s beer could not attain the quality. It was in 1976 that an American brewer chooses to imitate the British style, which indulged IPA. They then packaged the beer with much better content and hop. 

The co-owner of the Grand Rapid Breweries took the challenge to make a much cheaper yet tasty beer while promoting its brand. After the continuous effort of three years, they introduced a beer with 4.7 ABV, which could be consumed all day. According to a magazine, the beer in America has evolved remarkably and also its approach regarding IPAs. 

Steps To Manufacture Lager Beer

If you are a fan of Lager and wish to manufacture your beer, then follow these simple steps below:

  • Prepare a Starter (dry malt in water)
  • Boil with all the ingredients 
  • Ferment your Lager at a temperature of 80C – 150C. 
  • Increase the temperature to 250C to clean the diacetyl. It will approximately take three days.
  • When you reach week three, lower the temperature to 4C. As the process gets completed, the solid will settle down, leaving you with fresh beer to consume. 

Steps To Make IPA 

You can just follow these simple steps and have your beer for all of you who enjoy IPA and wish to brew your own.

  • Look for a container to boil the water and boil a minimum of 2.5 gallons of water.
  • After heating, let it attain room temperature and then add syrup.
  • Boil the mixture again and then add hops. 
  • Let your container be cool in an ice bath 
  • Add yeast to the mixture and let it ferment 
  • Finally, add sugar to bottles and fill them with beer and leave them for three weeks. You can enjoy your IPA after 21 days and relish its fantastic taste. 

Read more about How to brew beer at home.

Types Of IPAs

You can find a wide variety of IPAs in the market as different brewers used different recipes. Here are some of the well-known different style beers:

  • The English IPA
  • West Coat IPA
  • East Coast IPA
  • Double IPA
  • The Triple IPA
  • The Session IPA
  • The Belgian IPA
  • THE Grapefruit IPA

Types Of Lagers 

For all of you who enjoy lagers can choose from these amazing variety mentioned below:

  • Pale Lager
  • Amber Lager
  • Dark Lager
  • Bock Lager
  • Speciality Lager

Summing Up

After reading the article, you can easily say that the two drinks are quite different. While Lagers are clean and have consistent flavor, the IPAs are hoppy. Now that you know all about these two drinks, you can choose and enjoy the one which quenches your thirst!

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