Author Topic: Ambitions for this year  (Read 1440 times)

Offline Hand of Dom

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Ambitions for this year
« on: March 24, 2016, 11:11:57 AM »
Now I am into my second year of AG brewing, I've decided to alter my approach from a scattergun attempt to clone my favourite beers, to trying to master a few basic styles that I really enjoy (which I can then experiment with at a later date).  The styles I'm looking to tackle this year are:

Porter/Stout - I've made 2 of these so far this year, with decent success, and so am pretty happy with this style.

Saison - One of my favourite styles of beer, but one with which I have had patchy results.  I have not had the opportunity to attempt one since I got my brew fridge, but will be attempting again as my next batch.

Belgian strong dark - I'm reasonably happy with this style.  Hermann Holtrop's Rochefort recipe works well for me, so I think I will just stick with this.

Hoppy pale ale - I love the taste/aroma of fresh hops, but really dislike those mouth puckering ridiculously bitter examples. 

Would people mind offering me recipe suggestions for these styles? 
Dom

Currently drinking - Amarillo saison
Currently fermenting - Pale ale 1 - 2017

Offline riceral

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2016, 11:28:53 AM »
Here's a good place to start for recipes of all kinds:
              http://wiki.homebrewersassociation.org/BeerRecipes
Ralph R.

Offline pete b

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2016, 12:00:13 PM »
I don't have specific recipe suggestions but will first of all say that your overall approach of concentrating your brewing time on a handful of styles is excellent.
as far as recipes my advice is to start with simple ingredients and the fewer the better in most cases. Take notes and drink plenty of commercial examples. Note what you like and what you like more or less of and try changing one thing at a time if you ate able to brew regularly.
With stouts and porters I find myself playing around with specialty malts to get the balance of roastiness and maltiness to my liking as well as getting the ph right.
With saisons I find myself playing with yeast strains and its one style I tend to want to experiment with more unusual ingredients like grape must and spices.
I only make a dark Belgian about once a year and you'll have good advice from others here. All I can say I'd you don't need seven specialty malts for complexity.
For hoppy beers I have come down to a simple hop schedule: a 60 minute addition for pretty much all the ibu's, a long whirlpool with lots of aroma hops, and usually a dry hop. I think sometimes people are thinking so much about hops that not much time is put into the grain bill. Right now I'm into 80% pale malt 20% Munich. It gets me a nice malt counterpoint to the hops without the sweetness of crystal malt. But that's not for everyone, find what you like. Gypsum is your friend here.
Have fun!
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 12:02:36 PM by pete b »
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Offline Hand of Dom

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2016, 01:15:16 PM »
The saison is the recipe I really want to get right, I might try something like this:

50% Belgian pale
40% Vienna
10% Wheat

Bittered to ~30IBU with Saaz and Goldings, and a touch of gypsum and lactic in my water.  I plan on using WLP565, but I'm not sure about temperature profile for my fermentation though.  I've tried experimenting with higher temps in the past (using an immersion heater), but came away with a beer that tasted weirdly of peanuts.  This will be my first time trying a saison with my brew fridge.
Dom

Currently drinking - Amarillo saison
Currently fermenting - Pale ale 1 - 2017

Offline dilluh98

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2016, 03:01:47 PM »
WLP565: 65F for about a week then free rise to low to mid 70s for another week or longer. I haven't had much luck going to extreme temps with this yeast - low 70s will get the nice saison character you're looking for.

Recipe looks like a good one, btw.

Offline Phil_M

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2016, 03:12:11 PM »
I'm brewing my second saison this weekend. Sticking with Wyeast 3724. First time around I had great results, though I did end up ramping temps into the low 90's. Batch ended up getting infected and got dumped. (The culprit was my blow off hose.)

This time around I'm going with 90% Briess Pale Ale malt and 10% Briess flaked barley. Hops will be fuggles (subbed for styrian goldings) and EKG. Going to brew a 6-gallon batch in an 8-gallon bucket, and I've got fermcap-s to eliminate any blow off concerns. I plan on starting fermentation in the mid 60's, with no lid, just some foil over the top of the bucket. After a few days I'll put the lid on and install an airlock, and start ramping the temp up a degree or two a day till it hits FG.

Doing it mostly as an experiment/data collection beer. I want to find a nice simple saison recipe, brew it for summer evenings on the patio. I've no idea how well suited pale ale malt is to a saison, but I'm sure the end result won't be a bad beer.
Corn is a fine adjunct in beer.

And don't buy stale beer.

Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #6 on: March 24, 2016, 03:18:52 PM »
I think you're going down the right path trying to perfect a small number of recipes for yourself. You'll get some good, reliable beers and learn a lot about brewing that you can apply to any other number of styles and recipes.

I would suggest rather than chasing good recipes to figure out exactly what you want those beers to be and work backwards. Sit down and write out the description of the end goal as though you were judging it. Then build the recipe to match the goal (or ask for help building that recipe). You may not get it right the first time but you will at least know what to refine and why you are refining it. Asking people for a good pale ale recipe will get you twenty good recipes that may make great beers but not necessarily the great beer you want.
Heck yeah I blog about homebrewing: Brain Sparging on Brewing

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #7 on: March 24, 2016, 03:24:23 PM »
Here's a simple saison recipe. It's tasty.

OG 1.055
FG 1.002-1.004
IBU 25.7

71.6% Begian Pils
23.2% Vienna
5.2%  Wheat malt

Mash @147/ 90 mins @ 5.2 pH
Yellow balanced profile

25.7 IBU Nelson Sauvin - 20 mins
1 oz Nelson - added after cooling to 170F - steep 20 mins

WY3711, WY 3726 (when available), or WLP565 - hold @ 65 for 3 days, ramp 2 degrees F/day, up to 75F. Hold until FG.

There you go. Easy peasy.
Jon H.

Offline goschman

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #8 on: March 24, 2016, 03:32:34 PM »
Here's a simple saison recipe. It's tasty.

OG 1.055
FG 1.002-1.004
IBU 25.7

71.6% Begian Pils
23.2% Vienna
5.2%  Wheat malt

Mash @147/ 90 mins @ 5.2 pH
Yellow balanced profile

25.7 IBU Nelson Sauvin - 20 mins
1 oz Nelson - added after cooling to 170F - steep 20 mins

WY3711, WY 3726 (when available), or WLP565 - hold @ 65 for 3 days, ramp 2 degrees F/day, up to 75F. Hold until FG.

There you go. Easy peasy.

This looks great. Any suggestions for a hop other than Nelson?
On Tap/Bottled: Haze for Daze IPA, G Pils, Maibock, Kolsch, Summer Gold       

Fermenting: 
Up Next: Euro Pale, IPA

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #9 on: March 24, 2016, 03:36:24 PM »
Here's a simple saison recipe. It's tasty.

OG 1.055
FG 1.002-1.004
IBU 25.7

71.6% Begian Pils
23.2% Vienna
5.2%  Wheat malt

Mash @147/ 90 mins @ 5.2 pH
Yellow balanced profile

25.7 IBU Nelson Sauvin - 20 mins
1 oz Nelson - added after cooling to 170F - steep 20 mins

WY3711, WY 3726 (when available), or WLP565 - hold @ 65 for 3 days, ramp 2 degrees F/day, up to 75F. Hold until FG.

There you go. Easy peasy.

This looks great. Any suggestions for a hop other than Nelson?



Lemon Drop and Sorachi Ace have a nice lemon character that enhances the saison tartness. Citra can be good with 3711, go lightly with it though. I like Nelson for the white grape character it gives the beer. Seems a good fit to me. I try to avoid getting saison too hoppy (to avoid drowning out the yeast character), but I know some here dry hop their saisons. Regardless it's just a great style.
Jon H.

Offline tommymorris

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #10 on: March 24, 2016, 03:43:05 PM »
Another good link for recipes is: http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/homebrew-recipes/

Lots of award winning recipes. Only problem here is sometimes the same style wins over and over so some of the less popular styles in a category may not have many recipes.

Offline Hand of Dom

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #11 on: March 24, 2016, 03:46:38 PM »
I think you're going down the right path trying to perfect a small number of recipes for yourself. You'll get some good, reliable beers and learn a lot about brewing that you can apply to any other number of styles and recipes.

I would suggest rather than chasing good recipes to figure out exactly what you want those beers to be and work backwards. Sit down and write out the description of the end goal as though you were judging it. Then build the recipe to match the goal (or ask for help building that recipe). You may not get it right the first time but you will at least know what to refine and why you are refining it. Asking people for a good pale ale recipe will get you twenty good recipes that may make great beers but not necessarily the great beer you want.
A good point.  I'll have a think this weekend, and put together some recipes for the pale ale (this is probably the style I'm least confident on), and ask for feedback.
Dom

Currently drinking - Amarillo saison
Currently fermenting - Pale ale 1 - 2017

Offline dilluh98

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #12 on: March 24, 2016, 03:56:14 PM »
I plan on starting fermentation in the mid 60's, with no lid, just some foil over the top of the bucket. After a few days I'll put the lid on and install an airlock, and start ramping the temp up a degree or two a day till it hits FG.

I forgot to add this. WLP565 appears to be pressure sensitive. I always start the fermentation with just loose foil covering the hole until a few days in. I've never had the "Dupont Stall" fermenting in the mid-60s with this method.

Offline denny

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2016, 03:58:04 PM »
IMO, this is the best BDSA recipe I've ever found or brewed.

Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: Belgian Abbeyll (Wyeast #1762)
Yeast Starter: No, I'm lazy and use two packs
Additional Yeast or Yeast Starter: no
Batch Size (Gallons): 5.5
Original Gravity: 1.078
Final Gravity: 1.018
IBU: 26.2
Boiling Time (Minutes): 75
Color: 27.6
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 23 days @ 69-70
Additional Fermentation: Bottle condition for at least two months
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 14 days @69-70
Tasting Notes: It's everything you would expect from our monk brewing friends... great beer!

10.92 lb Pilsner (2 row) Belgian (2.0 SRM) 70.24%
1.73 lb Caramunich Malt (46.0 SRM) 11.13%
0.58 lb Corn, Flaked (1.3 SRM) 3.75%
0.58 lb Special B Malt (114.0 SRM) 3.75%
0.23 lb Carafa special dehusked (302.0 SRM) 1.47%
1.50 lb Dark Belgian candy sugar (100 SRM) 9.65 %
1.73 oz Styrian Goldings [4.20%] Boil 60 min
0.75 oz Hallertauer Hersbrucker [3.50%] Boil 30 min
0.39 oz Hallertauer Hersbrucker [3.50%] Boil 5 min
0.38 oz coriander seed Boil 5 min (Crush first)

MASH PROFILE

Protein rest Add 12.64 qt water at 156.2F to get 142F for 30min
Saccrification Add 11.23 qt water at 170.2F to get 154F for 60 min
Mash out Add 9.83 qt water at 205.6 to get 168F for 5 min
Begin Vorlauf then drain Mash Tun
Sparge with 0.73 gallons of water at 168F

Carb with 4.83 oz corn sugar

This is the award winning recipe by Hermann Holtrop from a Rochefort 8 clone comp that was held in the Netherlands. I think it's very close to the original Rochefort 8. A little darker then the original, but just as tasty... enjoy! If you can't find Carafa Special, Carafa l (337.0 SRM) will work well but will be a bit darker so scale back a bit.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline denny

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Re: Ambitions for this year
« Reply #14 on: March 24, 2016, 03:59:12 PM »
I plan on starting fermentation in the mid 60's, with no lid, just some foil over the top of the bucket. After a few days I'll put the lid on and install an airlock, and start ramping the temp up a degree or two a day till it hits FG.

I forgot to add this. WLP565 appears to be pressure sensitive. I always start the fermentation with just loose foil covering the hole until a few days in. I've never had the "Dupont Stall" fermenting in the mid-60s with this method.

Yep. There is an upcoming Experimental Brewing test that covers this.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell