New Year - Slid Brewday

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Slid

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Not brewed for a month or so, but drunk plenty. Looking forward to tomorrow's Golden Ale, which is heavily borrowed from the Cornish Tin Miners Ale recipe courtesy of Greg Hughes. Have weighed out the Grain in advance:

MO 4.9kg
Wheat malt 220g
Biscuit 250g
Crystal 40 500g

Hop schedule is planned as per yer man, Greg, with First Gold and Bramling Cross. S 04 this time, I think, as US 05 dries it out a bit.
 

Slid

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Brew day went very well, with no glitches, so looking forward to next weekend and getting some more stocks built up.

This afternoon I had a couple of clone beers from the late GW's book - Burton Bridge Top Dog stout. Very more-ish indeed.

Note that the recipe in my version of the book calls for 20g of Challenger and this is a typo - around 50g for 23L is needed to get 40 IBU's.

Very tempted to do this one again.
 

Clint

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I was looking at the top dog recipe earlier but decided on a bitter instead out the G H.....thanks for pointing out the typo with the hops!
 

Slid

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Well I am pretty rubbish already on keeping this up to date. Last weekend I did a dry stout:

Maris Otter 3.6kg
Flaked Barley 1kg
Roasted Barley 500g
Wheat malt 330g
Chocolate 100g

Did the bittering with Pilgrim - 39g @ First Wort
As the Bramling Cross was open and I read somewhere that it may be suited to a dark beer, 20g in @ 15m

I have noticed that adding the bittering hops to the GF as soon as the sparge is (finally) over makes the boil much easier to manage.
 

Clint

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I don't have a gf....so you add the hops before its up to boiling..? How is the boil more manageable?
 

Slid

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My last few brews have been done using S 04. These were:
Hobgoblin clone
Old Peculier clone
Golden Ale
Cornish Tin Miners Ale (GH)
Dry Stout (as above).

I have a few beers planned and US 05 looks like the go-to here. I tend to use a sachet on brew #1 and then re-use the trub for several other brews, maybe 3-6, by putting the trub, with some green beer, into 250ml bottles via sanitised jug and funnel.
Tomorrow I have planned out a pale ale using some hop samples from the Worcester Hop Shop.

Here is tomorrow's brew day recipe. The point of this is to use the "free" hops, so:

Maris Otter 5.225kg
Caramalt 275g

Bittering with 35g Flyer @60m (this poor little 35g of hops seems to have burst its bag, so needs using ASAP)
Huell Melon (35g) and Hallertua Blanc (35g) should go OK together, so they will get chucked half and half @ 10m and 0m (with the GF this really means 15m and 5m as it takes 5 minutes to sanitise the counter flow chiller).

The aim here is for a slightly fragrant Golden Ale.

The future beers planned, using the trub from this beer are:

Fullers London Porter (GW - may he rest in peace)
Fullers ESB (Also GW)
Old Ale (GH recipe, which I have done at least twice previously)
Hazy and undecided sort of "Reiterated Mash Experimental Brew"
 
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Slid

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I don't have a gf....so you add the hops before its up to boiling..? How is the boil more manageable?
My view on the physics of it is that the hops in the boiling wort form convenient points for the formation of bubbles and that the opportunity to stir them back into the wort at less than boiling temps makes the final "boil" much less violent.
This is my take on what I see, anyway.
 

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Could it be hop oil released at the sub boil temp having an effect on the water surface tension...??
 

Slid

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Yeah, apparently adding some oil to water would reduce the surface tension, so maybe the bubbles burst more easily too. Good shout!

I do know, empirically, that it is less problem to deal with the boil if you first wort the bitterings.
 

Slid

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Today I bottled the Cornish Tin Miners Ale at about 1.009, which is around 84% attenuation and rather more than S 04 should be. Possible that the US 05 hangs around in the FV's in tiny quantities, but takes it up again?
The Dry Stout should be racked over tomorrow (far too ****** after the rugby to do it tonight).
Last weeks brew has been going quite well and the low brewing temps (18-21C) in the airing cupboard might make for some difference in outcomes. It is this one:
Maris Otter 5.225kg
Caramalt 275g
Bittering with 35g Flyer @60m (this poor little 35g of hops seems to have burst its bag, so needs using ASAP)
Huell Melon (35g) and Hallertua Blanc (35g) should go OK together, so they will get chucked half and half @ 10m and 0m (with the GF this really means 15m and 5m as it takes 5 minutes to sanitise the counter flow chiller).
The aim here is for a slightly fragrant Golden Ale.

No brew this weekend, but hope to be doing one next weekend and the one after. Fullers London Porter and Fullers ESB.
 

Slid

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Today was the Fullers London Porter. Subbed out 21g of Bramling Cross as the late addition, to finish a bag, and used a mix of Progress Leaf and Fuggles Pellets instead of the Fuggles suggested by GW. Looking forward to this.

Went quite well as a Brewday, but 23 YO adolescent daughter managed to swish a bottle of Baileys onto the kitchen floor, whilst putting the Tesco delivery away. Big mess. The Baileys was from Xmas and nearly full, but I don't know who wanted it, bought it or intended to drink it.

SWMBO's Dad finally has finished the 24 bottles I gave him over a year ago. he likes circa 3.8% pale ales in a sort of modern style. I don't buy American hops at £6 for 100g, but will make him 12 bottles worth of a session beer.

Does anyone have any favourites in this sort of style, please?
 

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I am vaguely intrigued by the English Mild Ale style. Not the one of the last century , but that of the preceding one. I have had a good look at the GW recipes for a 3.1 to 3.6 sort of an effort and decided that a beer made to similar grain and hop proportions at a decent strength might be an approach. here is the Grain Bill for 25L:

Maris Otter 4kg
Dark Munich 1kg
Chocolate 0.2kg
Roast Barley 0.1kg
Cara / Crystal 0.3kg

Will probably add 250g or so of dark sugar and first wort hops to around 25 IBU's. As the hops opened and in the freezer are Fuggles and Progress, there is not much point in opening another.
 

Slid

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Brew day went well on the Mild above. Got 75% BH efficiency and over 26L of wort in the FV. Fuggles 30g @ first wort and 29g Progress @ 10 mins. Used US 05 although this is not really the style at all. Will probably be quite similar to the Porters I have made.
 
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Slid

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I've thought about re-iterated mashes for some time and today gave an opportunity out of the blue to try one.

Basically a 9kg grain bill split into two 4.5kg mashes using the same wort.

To cut a very long and frustrating story short, all my attempts at high strength beers come up disappointingly short and prone to glitches that involve successive bailing from one vessel to next and then back into the GF.
The grain crush may be a factor, in a much as after getting 16L of wort, after the two mashes, there seemed to be about 1 kg of sludgy type crap in the bottom of the GF, which needed a total transfer of wort and discard of crap.

Result is 66% efficiency (Brewhouse), a shorter length and lower strength than hoped for and a very long brewday indeed. this 66% efficiency is very similar, BTW, to my first half dozen or so GF brews (mainly ESB's).
Every attempt at a high strength brew to date has been basically more trouble than it ever turned out to be worth.
 
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Zephyr259

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That's a shame to hear. I'm going to be trying a reiterated mash soon too. I did a barleywine as standard to see what happened to my efficiency and I got 66% from 6.25 kg of grain, boiled for 90 mins so I could sparge with a bit more volume. The stuff that drained out of my mash while it was waiting to be cleaned was still up at 1.060... I'll get an 8.3% beer rather than the intended 9.3% but it should still be tasty provided I didn't turn it into a fusel bomb fermenting too hot. It had a bit of burn to it when transferring to the carboy for aging.

I'd agree that it sounds like your crush was too fine, that's a lot of material to make it through the mash plate. I always feel that I get a bunch of grains in the boil but it I think it's also the hot break.

At least the big belgian beers are a bit easier due to the sugar boosting the OG.
 

Slid

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That's a shame to hear. I'm going to be trying a reiterated mash soon too. I did a barleywine as standard to see what happened to my efficiency and I got 66% from 6.25 kg of grain, boiled for 90 mins so I could sparge with a bit more volume. The stuff that drained out of my mash while it was waiting to be cleaned was still up at 1.060... I'll get an 8.3% beer rather than the intended 9.3% but it should still be tasty provided I didn't turn it into a fusel bomb fermenting too hot. It had a bit of burn to it when transferring to the carboy for aging.

I'd agree that it sounds like your crush was too fine, that's a lot of material to make it through the mash plate. I always feel that I get a bunch of grains in the boil but it I think it's also the hot break.

At least the big belgian beers are a bit easier due to the sugar boosting the OG.
I tend to agree about the Belgian beers. Last year I did three strong beers around the same time, Exmoor Beast and JW Lees Moonraker clones and a Belgian Dubbel. The English beers got a "leg-up" using a one can kit (Tesco Exit Sale) and the Belgian from the 1kg of sugar. I think the Belgian was my fave, but they were all very good indeed. I think perhaps that for really strong beers, using malt extract or sugar is just easier than either Parti-Gyle or re-iterated mashing.

I still have one last bottle of the Barley Wine made over a year ago, as a small batch first runnings beer. The bottles were never primed, but have been "gushers" of the highest order, especially of late. If yours is as successful as mine was, it will be worth it in the end!
 

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I'm going to experiment but I do thing that you're right. A bit of DME or sugar really takes the pain out of getting high gravity in the grainfather.

How strong was your barley wine? My 10% small batch was primed a bit but never carbonated properly. This is why I like maturing my strong beers in a carboy for some months, gives some peace of mind that it's done fermenting.
 

Slid

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I'm going to experiment but I do thing that you're right. A bit of DME or sugar really takes the pain out of getting high gravity in the grainfather.

How strong was your barley wine? My 10% small batch was primed a bit but never carbonated properly. This is why I like maturing my strong beers in a carboy for some months, gives some peace of mind that it's done fermenting.
How strong was / is my Barley Wine? On brewing day it was 1.085 (16th Feb 2017). On bottling day it was 1.012 (8th March 2017). So by my crude linear approximation, it was about 9.7% - (85-12)/7.5. The great gushings of CO2 suggests ~ 10%. There is one bottle left in a swing top bottle. I am very tempted to drink it tomorrow, given that this may be last of the very cold weather. The thought of losing beer and bottle to a "bomb" would be just terrible.
 

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Surprising it kept fermenting after 85% attenuation. Yeah, I've heard the thaw is starting to set in, good time for the final bottle. Enjoy.
 
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