3.15.2015

More taps to fill! The lack of availability of reasonable English styles here, particularly on draft, has me motivated to try and keep some of that sort of thing around. Took a stab at a Northern English Brown this time around!

Northern English Brown II

Style: Northern English Brown

Recipe:

(lbs/%/malt)

8.0/82/Maris Otter

1.0/10/Flaked Oats

0.5/5/Pale Chocolate

0.25/2/Chocolate

(oz/time/variety)

0.2/60/Target

0.5/30/Target

Stats: SRM 20, IBU 21, 5.0% ABV

Notes:

1.2L starter prepared 3.14.2015, Wyeast 1318 London III. Pitched ~800 mL, Expected O.G. 1.046 @5.5gal (70% eff), final kettle vol 5.5 gal, measured O.G. 1.054 (eff ~82%). Hit volumes ideally @ 1gal/hr boil off, 0.5 gal dead volume in mash under false bottom (5.5 gal into chiller). Kept 2 vials of starter slurry for later use.

F.G. 1.016, kegged 4.1.15, near perfect vol. into keg. Initial tasting has me thinking a slightly more assertive hop presence might help, but I think proper carbonation should help. Noticed a fair amount of yeast still in suspension, maybe start cold crashing before I keg, have to remember.

1.16.2014

Just the other day I noticed the potential for a beer shortage approaching, thus, decided it was a good plan to pull the trigger on a brew session today. After procuring a large cup of coffee, I set about the house in search of inspiration, which came in the form of unused hops in the freezer, which I can’t bring myself to throw out. As such, the hop bill on today’s brew was a bit less organized than I’m accustomed to, but I decided to throw in the kitchen sink and brew up sizable amber IPA, hoping to showcase the over-ripe tropical fruit profile of NZ Galaxy with some balance from various american varieties.

Beamsplitter amber IPA

Predicted O.G. 1067, F.G. 1012

13 SRM, ~65 IBU’s

 

Grist:

2-Row pale malt (Malteurop)-70%

Light munich-25%

Crystal 80L-4%

Pale Chocolate-1%

 

Hops:

@60 min, 1.25 oz Nugget

@5 min, 1oz Centennial, 1oz Galaxy, 0.5oz Zeuss

@1 min, 1oz Centennial, 1oz Williamette, 1 oz Galaxy

Dry Hop: 1 oz Centennial, 2 oz Galaxy (7days)

Yeast: US-05

Given my druthers, I think I would have opted for columbus in place of the Nugget, Williamette and Zeuss, and added some in the dry hop, but none in the fridge, so this is what I’ve got.

 

For best result, apply at high volumes.

1.18.2014

First brew of the new year! I’ve been brewing sporadically the last several months, but par usual life keeps my time to brew pretty limited.  Decided to finally try my hand at a smoked porter. It’s a style I’ve nearly always enjoyed, but never brewed, maybe because it is a little less universal than some other styles. Anyways, I think this one will turn out a little less smokey than I intended, but this is ok.

Recipe (5.5 gallons)

Predicted stats:

O.G. 1052

IBU: 28

Color: 23 SRM

Grist:

2-Row (9 lbs/81%)

Crisp Pale Chocolate (0.75 lbs/6%)

Smoked Malt (0.5 lbs/4%)

Medium Crystal (0.5 lbs/4%)

Carafa (0.25 lbs/2%)

Hops:

1oz Centennial @60

Yeast:

US-05

I used the weyerman beechwood smoked malt, which I think has a less burly smoke flavor than some other options, and I think it may turn out a bit more background than I had initially intended. Also, the centennial I got was a touch on the low AA side, so I supplemented accordingly with a touch of UK Challenger I had leftover from an ESB I brewed about a month ago. Mashed at 153*F, collected 6.75 gallons pre-boil volume. Hoping to ferment in the low 60*F range.

12.8.13

After a somewhat lengthy hiatus, I’m back set up brewing. After a year without convenient brewing accommodations and some readjustment to the new digs, I’m pleased to be brewing again (with some regularity). As such, I’ll try and keep up on things here a bit more.

Brewed friday (12.6.13),

Challenger ESB (5.5 gallons)

Grist:

9lbs Crisp Maris Otter

2lbs Munich malt

0.5lbs crisp medium crystal

Hops:

1oz UK Challenger @60min

1.5oz UK Challenger @5min

1oz Willamette @5min

1.5oz UK Challenger @1min

1oz Willamette @1min

Pitched 1pkg S-04, vigorous fermentation within 12 hours.

Brewing notes: I under-accounted for boil off, as such I managed to collect about 5 gallons, this put S.G. at 1060, rather than the 1055 predicted.

So begins the wedding saga (parts I and II)

I’ve been gripper busy finishing my undergraduate degree, so I have been on bare minimum beer schedule, HOWEVER, a buddy recently asked if I would brew some beer up for his wedding in July. I was really honored that he would have that kind of faith in me, and I of course jumped at the chance. Even better, when we sat down over drinks to discuss what to make, he basically gave me the reins and said I could do whatever I thought would be good. Suddenly more pressure on my end, but a welcome challenge. This afternoon I brewed the second of three beers and moved the first onto dry hops, so here’s a quick write up of each beer/brewday/whatever. Also: gotta put in a plug for my buddy who is distributing hops to homebrewers at the best prices I’ve seen on the net here.

So here they are:

Part I

Twin Brother Darkness (A cascadian dark)

Batch Size: 5.5 gal, O.G. 1060, F.G. 1015, SRM 25, 69.1 IBU’s

% LB OZ MALT OR FERMENTABLE PPG °L
69% 8 0 American Two-row Pale 37 1 ~
13% 1 8 American Munich 33 10 ~
9% 1 0 Turbinado 44 10 ~
6% 0 11 Carafa I 32 337 ~
3% 0 6 Pale Chocolate Malt 34 165 ~
USE TIME OZ VARIETY AA
boil 60 mins 1.375 Columbus 14.6
boil 10 mins 1.0 Centennial 10.0
boil 10 mins 0.5 Columbus 14.6
boil 5 mins 1.0 Centennial 10.0
boil 5 mins 0.5 Columbus 14.6
dry hop 7 days 2.5 Centennial 10.0
dry hop 7 days 2.5 Columbus 14.6

Overall, the brew day went well, I re calibrated the temp sensor on the rig, which helped a lot and the wort was delicious going into the fermenter. I’m hoping the balance between sharp hops and smooth chocolate notes holds through and doesnt get thrown off. Today this went into secondary with 2.5 oz’s of centennial and 2.5 oz’s of columbus. I didnt have enough hop bags, so I just chucked the pellets right in, i’m hoping this doesnt cause issues when kegging, but you live and you learn I suppose.

Part II

The Honey Blonde

I wanted to produce a summer friendly beer (the wedding being in July) that would appeal to a whole spectrum of drinkers. Namely, I wanted something unique enough that I would be happy drinking it at a wedding, while keeping those not into particularly malty or hop driven beers. This was my attempt, and I hope it goes well. A light, quaffable summer beer. As of now, I have no idea if it worked, only time will tell, basically, I combined honey malt with a 2 row base and biscuit for a bit of a nice malt presence, to this I added a pound of honey at flame out, hoping to really dry out the finished beer and maybe add a bit of the honey profile. I paired all this with Saaz for the floral profile it contributes. The IBU’s are a bit high for a traditional blonde ale, but I think it will do well.

Batch size: 5.5 gal, O.G. 1042, F.G. 1012, SRM 6, IBU 30

% LB OZ MALT OR FERMENTABLE PPG °L
60% 5 0 American Two-row Pale 37 1 ~
12% 1 0 Clover Honey 34 5 ~
12% 1 0 American Wheat 39 2 ~
8% 0 11 Honey Malt 37 25 ~
8% 0 11 Biscuit Malt 36 23 ~
USE TIME OZ VARIETY AA
boil 60 mins 1.5 Saaz 5.5
boil 10 mins 1.0 Saaz 5.5
boil 1 min 1.0 Saaz 5.5

That said, I have high hopes. I’m often motivated by challenges when brewing, and I think this project has brought me a new challenge. It’s fairly easy to brew what I like, however it becomes much more difficult for me to brew things other people will be as psyched on as me (I generally enjoy strange styles). It will also be interesting (possibly heartbreaking) to see how people respond to the brews at the wedding. Next up (early next week) will be an american brown!

YVPA

I took advantage of the great weather and fresh ingredients I got yesterday to brew. I had a buddy ride shotgun for most of the process which was nice. I really like imparting the things I know and enjoy to other people, so it was rad. We brewed a fairly basic pale ale. I think I originally called it the Yakima Valley Pale with the intention of using local hops, however I dont know where these actually came from. Also, in my laziness I forgot to adjust hop weights for Alpha %’s so it might be more along the lines of a small IPA. Oh well, 45 IBU’s instead of the intended 42, I’ll survive.

Volume: 4 gallons, O.G. 1050 est (1049 actual), F.G. 1014 est, 45 IBU’s, 7* SRM, 4.8% ABV

Grist:

% LB OZ Malt or Fermentable ppg °L
75% 7 0 American Two-row Pale 37 1 ~
21% 2 0 American Munich 33 10 ~
3% 0 5 American Crystal 60L 34 60 ~

Hops:

use time oz variety form aa
boil 60 mins 0.5 Centennial leaf 10.0
boil 60 mins 0.5 Columbus leaf 13.5
boil 5 mins 1.0 Centennial leaf 10.0
post-boil 10 mins 1.0 Centennial leaf 10.0
post-boil 10 mins 0.5 Columbus leaf 13.5

Chilled to 70*F and then pitched a packet of US-05

I used the post boil hops as a sort of whirlpool addition while I was chilling via recirculation through the counterflow chiller. I’ve never tried this before, but I have high hopes. Also, in lieu of available muslin bags for hops I bought a bunch of cheesecloth from the painting section of the hardware store and used squares of that to roll/tie up the hop additions with awesome results. No more restricting grain bags for me!

Fermentation was going strong when I woke up this morning after 9 hours and the temp had dropped to about 67*F, psyched! I had to make up for wort absorbed by hops with some RO water, I need to learn how to compensate when I plan brews as I usually dont brew things with lots of hops, though I’m setting out to remedy that a bit in the near future.

I’ll post pictures when I can and should have some tastings up this week.