Opinions on a Pale Ale Recipe

Discussion in 'General Recipe Discussion' started by Zephyr259, Jan 8, 2019.

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  1. Jan 8, 2019 #1

    Zephyr259

    Zephyr259

    Zephyr259

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    Hi Folks,

    I'm going to brew a pale ale next as something light, hoppy and easy going compared to my stocks of bocks, bourbon stouts, belgian ales and barleywines (lots of B's there...).

    When I brewed my saison from Farmhouse Ales it had a lovely hoppy flavour to it for the first few months and it was a combination of EKG and Saaz which I'd like to recreate. The malt bill was 77% lager malt, 15% munich II and 7.5% malted wheat.

    My base malt is currently Simpson's Golden Promise and I'm wondering what else to use, if anything. The style is superficially a British Golden Ale which folks seem to make with base malt and wheat and no crystal, not even a light one. I've decided that this is my pale ale and I'll make what I want not what an arbitrary styles says i should make. :-) In the past I remember enjoying Badger's First Gold, not for the hop character (although I do love FG in my bitter) but for the biscuity flavour that backed up the hops. This leads me to thinking that something like 10 - 15% Vienna and/or 5 - 7.5% biscuit malt might be a good complement to the Golden Promise, or would it just muddle things up? I always want to add some form of crystal to my British beers but I do think it's best left out of this one.

    Hopping rates for a 15L batch are as follows:

    24 IBU of Admiral (13%), 60 mins (originally EKG in the saison but not sure it matters)
    15g East Kent Goldings (5.2%), 15 min
    10g East Kent Goldning (5.2%), 0 min
    20g Saaz (3%), 0 min

    This gave a pleasant floral/herbal hop character which blended well with the saison yeast, plan to use Wyeast 1469 West Yorkshire this time, but keep it to 18c to reduce esters.

    Anyone got any comments or advice? Should I add some Saaz at 15 min as well? Does the bittering hop matter? One online recipe got all it's bittering from a 30 min addition so it contributed to flavour too, in that case I'd swap to EKG, but not done that before except in a wonky NEIPA when I was still doing 8L stove-top batches.

    Thanks
     
  2. Jan 8, 2019 #2

    IainM

    IainM

    IainM

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    Looks nice and simple. I think a bit of vienna would work well with an British pale, and although at the hop-forward end of the scale it isn't over the top. I recon a bit of Saaz would make a nice compliment to the more traditional EKG.
     
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  3. Jan 8, 2019 #3

    Zephyr259

    Zephyr259

    Zephyr259

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    Thanks for the thoughts, in saying you like the idea of Vienna, does that mean you'd drop the biscuit? (That's a very strange sentence in isolation)
     
  4. Jan 8, 2019 #4

    IainM

    IainM

    IainM

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    Yes, not that I think that biscuit wouldn't work, but Vienna would be better.
     
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  5. Jan 8, 2019 #5

    GerritT

    GerritT

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    EKG and Saaz: yes! A handful of crystal (carapils?) is always worth considering (a la Greg Hughes), and Vienna over golden promise. Perhaps a 30% pilsner malt?
     
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  6. Jan 8, 2019 #6

    Zephyr259

    Zephyr259

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    You'd use Vienna as the base malt? I have 4 kg of it so that's plenty but what's wrong with Golden Promise?

    I don't have any pilsner malt as it took me ages to go through my first 10kg bag and figured for the styles I brew GP would sub acceptably and if it didn't then I've learned something.
     
  7. Jan 8, 2019 #7

    GerritT

    GerritT

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    Because of the late Saaz addition, I thought of pilsner: it has a lot of body, big mouth feel. Nothing wrong with golden promise, Vienna is just a bit darker, sweeter. Something I associate more with a golden or amber ale.

    But nothing that could not be achieved by mashing a few º's higher :laugh8:

    Look, it's your recipe, and you want those hops to shine: keep the malt bill simple! Use biscuity or sweetness to balance against the hoppines, or if you want ABV to lean on: add more malt and push that ABV to 7% or up. You wouldn't want 1-dimensional hopwater, you want a firm drink with proper legs to stand on, and those legs are IBU, ABV and sweetness. None of them should be too short, and none of them should be too long: your brew would be out of balance.

    Got any beers (apart from Badger's First Gold) that could inspire you?
     
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  8. Jan 8, 2019 #8

    Zephyr259

    Zephyr259

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    No commercial beer is coming to mind, haven't drank many that aren't Belgian, sour or big beers since I started homebrewing. Even then my tastes were always more towards the hobgoblinL / LiaFáil end of the spectrum. I guess Thwaites Wainwright was one my father-in-law kept in stock often, it was tasty, was also partial to a bitter and twisted or a deuchars IPA. They just came back to me.

    I could keep it simple and use the Munich/wheat blend from the saison, just wondered what others thought.

    The saison was 6.3% but only 1.056 OG, but it also had the yeast character as a balance. I was scaling this down to about 4% or just over for something light and refreshing. Thanks for the advice guys, appreciated.
     

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