Author Topic: Swap-toberfest '15  (Read 23639 times)

Offline pete b

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #315 on: November 15, 2015, 01:13:34 AM »
Quick Review: New England Bitter - Pete B

Bottle conditioned. Slightly over carbonated. Pours a really cool deep reddish brown with a craggy off white head that sticks around for a bit. Aroma is slightly nutty, sweet candy with a mild floral note. A tiny bit of biscuity graininess. Substantial body with a slightly grainy finish. Very low hints of toffee, no toast, medium biscuit. No DMS and no perceivable butter/diacetyl despite the toffee notes. Incredibly well balanced between the hop bitterness and malts with restrained fruity esters. The flavors and aromas intensify slightly

I am not sure of the hops used, but this is better than a few pints of bitter or mild I have had in the UK. If the measure of a bitter is drink-ability - this has it, and I wish this was on cask somewhere nearby!

Well done! Nice welcome home drink after my trip to CA.
Glad you liked it Matt. That beer went really fast, it was drinkable for sure and at 4.2% ABV I thought it was pretty malty. I made the beer on a whim to try out my share I bought of local malt from valley malt. It was 80% pale, 20% Munich. It was way overcarbed for a bitter but since I was already off the style with the American malts I decided to go for it with the carbonation to enhance mouth feel. The hops were northern brewer for 60 min and EKG in a whirlpool. If you had it younger I think you would have picked up some black tea from the EKG.
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Offline mchrispen

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #316 on: November 15, 2015, 03:06:40 AM »
It was seriously good. I have spent a LOT of time in Sheffield, and this was satisfying and familiar. Really a good job!


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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #317 on: November 15, 2015, 08:08:01 PM »
heavydeadlift Tart Cherry wild ale:

I was impressed with the barely perceptable alcohol in an 11+% beer. The cherry flavor and aroma were restrained but present. Sourness was at a minimum where it was tartness and accenuated the cherry without being puckering.

Unfortunatly either the water was not fully de-chlorinated or you got some highly alcohol tolerant oxidizing yeast in there because there was a very strong chlorophenol character in both the aroma and flavor that was really hard to get past.

It was a bummer because other than that one flaw this was a really nice wild ale and the fruit was supported by the body and fullness on the mouthfeel which at 1.001 final gravity was all from alcohol and carbonation. Again, this was a really drinkable beer. something that would be totally at home in a champagne flute for a special occasion except for the medicinal note. I would have loved to taste it a couple weeks ago if this was a new note or something introduced in the bottle. way more drinkable than three philosophers or similar subtle fruit beers.
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Offline Footballandhops

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #318 on: November 16, 2015, 12:34:06 AM »

heavydeadlift Tart Cherry wild ale:

I was impressed with the barely perceptable alcohol in an 11+% beer. The cherry flavor and aroma were restrained but present. Sourness was at a minimum where it was tartness and accenuated the cherry without being puckering.

Unfortunatly either the water was not fully de-chlorinated or you got some highly alcohol tolerant oxidizing yeast in there because there was a very strong chlorophenol character in both the aroma and flavor that was really hard to get past.

It was a bummer because other than that one flaw this was a really nice wild ale and the fruit was supported by the body and fullness on the mouthfeel which at 1.001 final gravity was all from alcohol and carbonation. Again, this was a really drinkable beer. something that would be totally at home in a champagne flute for a special occasion except for the medicinal note. I would have loved to taste it a couple weeks ago if this was a new note or something introduced in the bottle. way more drinkable than three philosophers or similar subtle fruit beers.

Son of a nutcracker....as I am trying to remember the process for that beer, I know I used 2 campden tabs, one in the mash water and one in sparge water

And now that I think about it, the secondary carboy I racked that beer in to referment with a bottle of tart cherry concentrate had been just deep cleaned for a few days soaking in a mixture of oxyclean and a touch of bleach. I remember rinsing the heck out of it after dumping the solution and then spraying it down with star san. Maybe that is the culprit....

To be honest I didn't pick that up until after I read your post and went out to the keezer to grab a taste....now it smacks me in the face

Is it possible for chlorophenol off notes to build up over time? Or is it really just a one time reaction? I know it wasn't that apparent to me when it was kegged, but then again my beer off flavor palate is still developing so it may have been there all along. It seems that the brett "funk" character has pretty much dropped out at this point in the keg as well...

Anywho, thanks for the feedback
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #319 on: November 16, 2015, 12:40:29 AM »

heavydeadlift Tart Cherry wild ale:

I was impressed with the barely perceptable alcohol in an 11+% beer. The cherry flavor and aroma were restrained but present. Sourness was at a minimum where it was tartness and accenuated the cherry without being puckering.

Unfortunatly either the water was not fully de-chlorinated or you got some highly alcohol tolerant oxidizing yeast in there because there was a very strong chlorophenol character in both the aroma and flavor that was really hard to get past.

It was a bummer because other than that one flaw this was a really nice wild ale and the fruit was supported by the body and fullness on the mouthfeel which at 1.001 final gravity was all from alcohol and carbonation. Again, this was a really drinkable beer. something that would be totally at home in a champagne flute for a special occasion except for the medicinal note. I would have loved to taste it a couple weeks ago if this was a new note or something introduced in the bottle. way more drinkable than three philosophers or similar subtle fruit beers.

Son of a nutcracker....as I am trying to remember the process for that beer, I know I used 2 campden tabs, one in the mash water and one in sparge water

And now that I think about it, the secondary carboy I racked that beer in to referment with a bottle of tart cherry concentrate had been just deep cleaned for a few days soaking in a mixture of oxyclean and a touch of bleach. I remember rinsing the heck out of it after dumping the solution and then spraying it down with star san. Maybe that is the culprit....

To be honest I didn't pick that up until after I read your post and went out to the keezer to grab a taste....now it smacks me in the face

Is it possible for chlorophenol off notes to build up over time? Or is it really just a one time reaction? I know it wasn't that apparent to me when it was kegged, but then again my beer off flavor palate is still developing so it may have been there all along. It seems that the brett "funk" character has pretty much dropped out at this point in the keg as well...

Anywho, thanks for the feedback
To be clear, except for that one fault this was a really good beer. Getting a big beer to be that smooth and easy to drink is a big deal. There are contaminant organisms that can cause the medicinal off flavor. It also a process involving the yeast so it could get worse over time. It sounds like your process was sound so I'm guessing this is just a case of a wild ale getting a bit too wild.

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Offline Footballandhops

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #320 on: November 16, 2015, 01:28:53 AM »


heavydeadlift Tart Cherry wild ale:

I was impressed with the barely perceptable alcohol in an 11+% beer. The cherry flavor and aroma were restrained but present. Sourness was at a minimum where it was tartness and accenuated the cherry without being puckering.

Unfortunatly either the water was not fully de-chlorinated or you got some highly alcohol tolerant oxidizing yeast in there because there was a very strong chlorophenol character in both the aroma and flavor that was really hard to get past.

It was a bummer because other than that one flaw this was a really nice wild ale and the fruit was supported by the body and fullness on the mouthfeel which at 1.001 final gravity was all from alcohol and carbonation. Again, this was a really drinkable beer. something that would be totally at home in a champagne flute for a special occasion except for the medicinal note. I would have loved to taste it a couple weeks ago if this was a new note or something introduced in the bottle. way more drinkable than three philosophers or similar subtle fruit beers.

Son of a nutcracker....as I am trying to remember the process for that beer, I know I used 2 campden tabs, one in the mash water and one in sparge water

And now that I think about it, the secondary carboy I racked that beer in to referment with a bottle of tart cherry concentrate had been just deep cleaned for a few days soaking in a mixture of oxyclean and a touch of bleach. I remember rinsing the heck out of it after dumping the solution and then spraying it down with star san. Maybe that is the culprit....

To be honest I didn't pick that up until after I read your post and went out to the keezer to grab a taste....now it smacks me in the face

Is it possible for chlorophenol off notes to build up over time? Or is it really just a one time reaction? I know it wasn't that apparent to me when it was kegged, but then again my beer off flavor palate is still developing so it may have been there all along. It seems that the brett "funk" character has pretty much dropped out at this point in the keg as well...

Anywho, thanks for the feedback
To be clear, except for that one fault this was a really good beer. Getting a big beer to be that smooth and easy to drink is a big deal. There are contaminant organisms that can cause the medicinal off flavor. It also a process involving the yeast so it could get worse over time. It sounds like your process was sound so I'm guessing this is just a case of a wild ale getting a bit too wild.

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Cool, thanks again.
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Offline pete b

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #321 on: November 20, 2015, 09:40:55 PM »
So after having to send it to me twice due to a damaged package Paul's (BLATZ) package arrived safely yesterday. It was a very generous offering of 3 Cigar City Brewing beers: a double stout with coffee and cacoa nibs, and old ale with molasses (both bombers), and 2 cans of a red ale. The homebrews were a raspberry mead, a mojito mead, a dortmunder, an Octoberfest, and a Red DIPA.
Today after leaving work early to start the weekend we had a nice walk in the woods with the dog and relaxed with a glass of Paul's Mojito Mead. It poured a nice deep golden color with medium clarity, not cloudy, not crystal clear. It was still, as expected. A swirl of the glass showed off some nice legs. I got lime juice and floral honey in the aroma. I didn't pick up much mint in the aroma but my girlfriend did. The flavor was lime with honey and sweetness that was not cloying. The mint shows up nicely near the end, and after a few sips lingers. It was a nice fresh mint flavor, not "mint flavor". The mint flavor was fairly assertive as I drank more in a very good way. There was no alcohol heat, in fact it was an easy drinker. We were sad to be finished with it. My girlfriend has been making mead for twenty years and has taught quite a few people how to make it and is pretty apprehensive about trying other people's mead and she thought this was great. Its very well done and I certainly would like the recipe or at least the method and amount for the mint.   
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Offline blatz

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #322 on: November 21, 2015, 05:51:29 PM »
Thanks pete!  Sorry it wasn't crystal clear - usually is but maybe stirred up being shipped back and forth to New England lol.

Will post the recipe later when I have my notes - fresh Florida key limes help though!  Glad you enjoyed it.
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Offline pete b

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #323 on: November 22, 2015, 01:37:44 AM »
Thanks pete!  Sorry it wasn't crystal clear - usually is but maybe stirred up being shipped back and forth to New England lol.

Will post the recipe later when I have my notes - fresh Florida key limes help though!  Glad you enjoyed it.
That mead had quite a trip. If I knew I would like it so much I would have sent you a check for a couple dozen limes! We can get pretty lousy limes up here but they seem to prevent scurvy when mixed with gin.
We had the beers from Cigar City over the previous two nights and they were all excellent. I particularly appreciated the Old Ale with Molasses, that was cool.

So I just had your Dortmunder and WOW! I'm not familiar with the style because I don't see it around here but I like German lagers in general and this was one of the best I have had. It poured a deep gold, less pale than I expected and was very clear with a thin, snow white head that dissipated but laced the glass. The aroma was sweetish grain with hops aroma that I can't identify. The flavor was grain with a definite but restrained sweetness finishing off slightly dry with a pleasant bitterness that made me want another sip. I may have gotten a tiny dms on the first two sips, which I actually miss if not present in a German lager. I definitely did not get dms after that initial fleeting taste so maybe it was wishful thinking? I wonder if you got it? The carbonation was nice, just enough to accentuate the refreshing crispness. This beer was balanced everywhere: the malt itself between sweetness and grain, the malt and bitterness, the sweetness in the middle of the mouth followed by relative dryness and bitter. Honestly this was one of the most well made homebrews I have had and I have not had too many commercial lagers I have liked better.
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Offline blatz

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #324 on: November 22, 2015, 11:55:43 PM »
Wow very glad you liked it.  Ironically i just sadly kicked the last keg of the Dortmunder this afternoon watching football.  Really glad you liked it - it is a favorite of mine.

I did indeed get a smidgin of corn/dms when first poured but it fades quickly.  Not to sure why as I don't get it in my pils and I follow the same exact procedure in that as the fort but oh well.  Will post the Mojito tomorrow when am at a desktop.
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Offline pete b

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #325 on: November 23, 2015, 12:13:58 AM »
I'm serious about liking what I did detect. There's a reason its allowable in the style. To me its a memory of some amazing beer I had in the past.
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Offline blatz

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #326 on: November 24, 2015, 04:14:02 PM »
Mojito Mead

~4gal RO Water (enough to make 5 gal into the fermentor) - 50:50 gypsum and CaCl to get Ca up to 50ppm.

18# Orange Blossom honey
6oz fresh squeezed key lime juice
yeast nutrient
10oz bruised spearmint leaves.
wyeast sweet mead yeast.

potassium metabisulfate followed by potassium sorbate to halt fermentation.


bring water up to about 180-90, add all honey, lime juice and yeast nutrient, let sit at 160 for 30 min to pasteurize.

chill and rack to fermenter.  oxygenate for 90 seconds and pitch yeast.  ferment mid to high 60s.

I like to get the gravity down to about 1.026-1.030 and then use campden and sorbate to ensure it has halted.

rack to keg or other secondary.  age as long as you like - I did about 6months before I "dry minted" with a hop bag and the bruised mint leaves. 

package and enjoy - it gets better for years - the one pete had is over 3 years old.  the lime and mint balance will shift over time, but its still a good ager.
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Offline jeffy

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #327 on: November 24, 2015, 04:23:01 PM »
I think I have judged that mead.  It was excellent.
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Offline blatz

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #328 on: November 24, 2015, 04:24:39 PM »
I think I have judged that mead.  It was excellent.

indeed you have - and scored it very well!
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Offline pete b

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Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« Reply #329 on: November 24, 2015, 04:42:34 PM »
I'm impressed by how fresh the mint tasted. I might add lime zest to the "dry minting" to see if the lime could be as fresh and bright as the mint over time.
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