Friday, April 17, 2009

Tasting the Irish Red

Tonight I decided it was time to test the Irish Red Ale. I took a bottle room temperature at 64 F and put it in the freezer for half an hour. Even cold, it poured well with a good head. The Fuggles is quite noticeable on the nose with a slight hint of of the extra half ounce of Willamette I put in late in the boil. The extra Malto-Dextrine adds to the head and the feel.

When cold, the after taste is quite hoppy and very little barley sweetness. As it warms up, the sweetness is more pronounced mid-mouth, but the finish is still very hoppy. For a beer one week in the bottle without having been put into a secondary, it is quite clean and drinkable. So far, the only disappointment is the color. It is more caramel than red, though there is a slight red hint. The predicted color of 15.5 seems to be very accurate. Next time I will not crush the roasted barley, but level it cracked and steeped more whole.

It does need more time in the bottle to age and balance. This is quite a good recipe and it will be fun to move it toward great over the coming months. My local fan club should enjoy this brew and I will enjoy improving it for them.


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