Saturday, September 5, 2009

Crystal Ale goes live

What an interesting and long day this has been. Looks like we will be calling Roto-rooter sometime soon. Yippie. But that's a different topic.

My latest recipe is a push back into pale ales like I did years ago, this time with a bigger hops bill. In fact, the hops costs me more than the extract and the specialty grains. This one should be fairly pale, with 8 pounds of extract (5 @ 2L and 3 @ 4L) and nine ounces of hops. Yeah, that's right, nine ounces. I will use three of them to dry hop when it goes to the secondary.

The hops

Simcoe - 90 minutes, 12.7%
Warrior - 60 minutes, alpha 15.8%
Sterling - 20 minutes, 10 minutes and 1 minute, alpha 6%
Kent Goldings - 12 minutes, alpha 4.5%
Cascade - dry hop, alpha 7.5%
Challenger - dry hop, alpha 7.0%

Only the Simcoe and Warrior went into hop bags, so the Sterling and Goldings should also impart some flavor during fermentation. I used a dry yeast, but hopefully it will not get overly excited like what happened on the black ale. I do long for cooler temperatures so that the fermentation will be better controlled.

As for the total IBUs, I really need someone to help me with BeerSmith to make sure I am setting then in properly. I put all but the drop hops to boiling with their times and it shows an IBU of 110. If that is correct, this will really be bitter. Sure there are 3 pounds of crystal in there, but that may not be enough. We shall see in a few weeks.

To those who have samples of the black ale, please try them and let me know. I doubt it will keep well, so drink up now. When it gets a bit cooler, I will make the barley wine again and perhaps an Imperial version of the black. Both of these should store well.

Till next time.

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