Tuesday, 26 April 2016

Sierra Nevada Knock Off

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale is probably the defining beer of the American Pale Ale Style.  I cannot wait to try the real thing, but until then I'll have to do with the knock off.

I find this beer is really well balanced and full flavoured.  The original recipe that I based this off was from the brewery by way of the Northern Brewer forum before it was redesigned.

Batch Size:  20L
Boil Size:  15L

OG: 1.052
FG: 1.015
Brew date: 28/03/2016
Estimated ABV: 5%
Actual ABV: 4.86%

1Kg Sorghum Syrup @ 60 minutes
500g Maltodextrine @ 60 minutes
1tsp Calcium carbonate @ 10 minutes
14g Magnum 13.6% AA @ 60 minutes
14g Perle 7.7% AA @ 30 minutes
1 x whirlfloc tablet @ 15 minutes
28g Cascade Hops @ 15 minutes
1tsp Yeast nutrient @ 15 minutes
2kg Sorghum Syrup @ 0 minutes
750g (500ml) Amber Candy Syrup @ 0 minutes
60g Cascade Hops @ whirlpool 10 minutes
*** Cold Crash ***
1 packets of Fermentis US-05 American Ale Yeast

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Belgian Dark Strong - Test Batch Number 1

I brewed this beer in the approach leading up to Christmas.  Always great to have something different and stronger for the special day.

Due to attenuation problems (the yeast died before eating all of the sugar) this beer finished a little on the sweet side.  Although for a dark strong Belgian this isn't a big deal.  The packet of yeast was past it's best before so I won't write off the yeast just yet.


Batch Size 18L
OG:  1086
FG:  1030 (as noted this was a fault, should have been way lower)
Brew date:  01/12/2014

3Kg Sorghum @ 60 minutes
1Kg Rice Malt @ 60 minutes
600g Dark Candy Syrup @ 60 minutes
200g Dark Muscavado Sugar @ 60 minutes
300g Maltodextrine @ 60 minutes
14g Perle Hops @ 60 minutes (30 IBUs)
1 whirlfloc tablet @ 15 minutes
1 tsp yeast nutrient @ 10 minutes

T-58 Belgian Yeast (best before April 2014)

Tasting Notes:

Aroma; dark fruit, plum and raisin, small amount of alcohol in the nose.
Taste; dark fruit, plum and raisin, long sweet finish.  Balanced more towards sweetness  which is caused by attenuation but still fits the style.
Body; Medium light body.  Pours with a great head that dissipates and leaves lacing behind.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Epic Pale Ale - Drinking

This epic pale ale was epic indeed.  This was the first time using whirlpool hopping and I definitely think it added more hop flavour to the beer.  I've since used the technique successfully in a IIPA.
If you can purchase Cascade in bulk I recommend giving it a try.

Monday, 10 February 2014

Light Weight GF Duvel

I've been wanting to retry T-58 Belgian Yeast since moving to a temperature control setup.  My first experience with this yeast and I think an infection put me off it for some time.  Due to trying to utilise some old hops my final recipe ended up slightly different to the planned recipe.  I'm going to post the planned recipe as this will be the easiest to replicate.

If this brew is successful I will re-brew the recipe at a higher gravity and age it.  The current gravity of approximately 1050 allows for a faster turn around.


400g Maltodextrine @ 60 minutes
680g Sucrose @ 60 minutes
1.5 Kg Sorghum Syrup @ 60 minutes
24g Saaz 4% AA @ 60 minutes
38g Styrian Goldings 5% AA @ 60 minutes
1tsp Yeast Nutrient @ 15 minutes
1tsp Calcium Carbonate @ 15 minutes
28g Saaz 4.1% AA @ 15 minutes
1.5 Kg Sorghum Syrup @ 0 minutes
*** Cold crash for 30 minutes ***
Top up to 20L and Pitch T-58 Belgian Ale Yeast

Epic Pale Ale gone Gluten Free - Brewday

I've spent the last few weeks researching the "Can You Brew It Recipe" for Epic Pale Ale.  This is a New Zealand brewed Pale Ale with HEAPS of USA Cascade Hop Pellets. This beer utilities a hopping method called whirlpool hopping to increase the bitterness and draw more flavour out of the hops.  Once the boil has finished I started a whirlpool and threw in the 0 minute hops.  The whirlpool doesn't need to be going constantly but I stirred it every 5 minutes after the end of the boil.  All Cascade hops used in this recipe were 5.4% Alpha Acid.

If this brew is successful I'd like to try hopping an IPA with Centennial in the same way.

350g Maltodextrine @ 60 Minutes
1.5Kg Sorghum syrup @60 minutes
10g Cascade Hops @ 60 minutes
20g Cascade Hops @ 30 minutes
1 whirlfloc tablet @ 15 minutes
48g Cascade Hops @ 10 minutes
1tsp Yeast Nutrient @ 10 minutes
1tsp Calcium Carbonate @ 10 minutes
500mL Amber Candy Syrup @ 0 minutes
1.5Kg Sorghum Syrup @ 0 minutes
50g Cascade Hops @ 0 minutes
*** Begin Whirlpool ***
50g Cascade Hops after 10 minutes
*** Restart Whirlpool ***
After 10 minutes Cold Crash

Topped up with water to 20L and pitched US-05 Yeast.

This recipe calls for two dry hoppings of 57g Cascade Hops each.  I'll update the recipe as and when I finish brewing it.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Clear as mud - Or How to make clearer gluten free beer?

I've been contacted a few times about improving the clarity of gluten free beers.  I thought I would detail a few of the options for products and how they're used.

Whirlfloc tablets
I have been using these round tablets for some time in my boil. The active ingredient within the tablets Irish moss is a type of seaweed that when added to the boil allows the proteins to drop out of suspension.  This makes a massive difference to yeast suspension in gluten free beers.  I add the tablet at 15 minutes from the end of the boil where it will fizz and spread the irish moss.

Be sure to check with the manufacturer to ensure they are gluten free prior to adding them to your brew.

Straining the Wort
Gluten free beer made with Sorghum produces a lot of trub (technical term for crap on the bottom of the fermenter).  A way to reduce the amount of trub is to strain hops out after the Wort has been chilled.  I used to strain my hops with a paint strainer or pasta strainer previously.  But recently I switched to a hop sock which is considerably faster.

After the beer has finished fermenting and prior to bottling or kegging gelatine can be used to clarify the beer.  Boil about 1/4 cup of water and combine with 1 teaspoon of gelatine stirring vigorously.   Cover and allow to cool.  Slowly add this across the top of your beer and reseal the fermenter.  It should take 24 to 48 hours to take effect.

Please note that once you add Gelatine to the beer it will no longer be Vegetarian or Vegan.  I don't use this for my beers.

Crash chilling
This will require a space in your fridge or temperature controlled freezer to fit your fermenting vessel.  Place your vessel in the fridge and set the temperature down to 4 degrees Celsius (39.2 degrees Fahrenheit) for at least 72 hours.  Any suspended yeast or hop particles will drop to the bottom of the fermentation vessel during this time and (save for shaking the vessel) will not transfer to the bottle or keg.  Even though suspended yeast will drop out there will be enough remaining yeast to bottle carbonate.

Bottle Carbonation
I found that following the above processes when the beer bottle carbonated, any additional yeast or trub would settle into a compact sediment.  Decanting into a glass made for a clear beer.

Keg forced Carbonation
Any trub that is transferred into the keg will settle after a few days in the fridge.  Discard the first pour and it will continue to improve the more beer you serve.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

West Coast Style IPA

I must say my favourite style of beer is west coast IPA's. Big bold flavours, aroma and bitterness for days.  Columbus isn't for all beer drinkers but it's definitely for me.  I pulled up the recipe Green Flash's West Coast IPA as my wife was very impressed with it.  The recipe for the West Coast IPA was shared on homebrewtalk.com so I used that as the basis for this recipe.  Here's the link http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f12/can-you-brew-recipe-green-flash-west-coast-ipa-175363/

Straining was a total pain in the arse with all these hops, so I had the wife build me a hop spider for the next brew.  Photos incoming.

West Coast IPA Recipe

Brew date:  01/07/2013

1.5kg Sorghum Syrup @ 60 minutes
125g Blackstrap Molasses @ 60 minutes
450g Maltodextrine @ 60 minutes
28g Simcoe @ 60 minutes
7g Columbus @ 60 minutes
7g Simcoe @ 30 minutes
7g Columbus @ 30 minutes
21g Simcoe @ 15 minutes
21g Columbus @ 15 minutes
1 whirlfloc tablet @ 15 minutes
28g Cascade @ 10 minutes
1tsp Calcium Carbonate @ 5 minutes
1tsp Yeast nutrient @ 5 minutes
14g Columbus @ 1 minute
14g Simcoe @ 1 minute
500ml Dark Candy Syrup @ 0 minutes
1kg Rice Syrup @ 0 minutes
1.5kg Sorghum Syrup @ 0 minutes
*** Cold Crash ***
1.5 Packets of US-05 American Ale Yeast
14g Amarillo, 14g Simcoe, 14g Columbus, 14g Centennial and 14g Cascade keg dry hop