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Thursday, April 23, 2015

Mesquite Wheat, bottling

I bottled the Mesquite Wheat tonight. Final gravity of 1.012 places the ABV at 6.6%. Aromas of sweet mesquite smoke and cedar notes. Smooth medium bodied mouth-feel with flavors of sweet malt up front which gives way to a moderate amount of mesquite smoke flavor which fades nicely into a mildly bitter finish. (This beer is making me think of barbecue which it will pair with nicely!) I'll post again after the beer has carbonated. CHEERS!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Mesquite Wheat

Hello all! When I heard that Briess Malting was releasing a new smoked malt, I couldn't wait to get my hands on it! Hello Mesquite Smoked Malt! I really wanted the flavor to come through and opted to use 56% of my grist as Mesquite Smoked Malt.
Those of you that know me, know that is in my medium usage range. (My other smoked beers range from usage rates as high as  98% smoked malts, to minimal usage rates of 15% or less.) What can I say, I love smoke beers!
Pictured is the boil and 5 gallons in the fermenter. I used Weyermann Pale Wheat and Weyermann CaraAroma for the remainder of the grist. I opted for UK Challenger hops.
When my wife came home, she said the house smelled like bacon! And indeed it does smell like a smokehouse! My daughter said it smelled like bacon when she got home from school. I can't wait to taste this one! This should pair very well with barbecue! The starting gravity was projected at 1.062. Actual measured, 1.062. Right on the money! I'm using Fermentis US-05 dry yeast for its good attenuation and neutral flavor to let the smoke come through. Projected ABV should be near 7%. Updates to come in 2-3 weeks. CHEERS!

Sleigh "Ryed" RIS

Here is the Sleigh "Ryed" RIS, (Russian Imperial Stout), in the glass after 3 months. Aromas of spice, dark cherries, dried stone-fruit, and chocolate. Flavors of spice, dried stone-fruit, and bittersweet chocolate. There is a slight lingering bitterness on the finish that I think will mellow with more aging. The flavor is reminiscent of a mix of barleywine and Russian Imperial Stout. No alcohol heat in the flavor, but there is a warmth when drinking it. CHEERS!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Russian Imperial Stout, Bottled

Bottled this today with FG of 1.020 placing ABV at 8.66%. Aromas of dried stone fruit, chocolate, and spice. Flavors of chocolate, spice, and dried stone fruit as well. Nice silky-smooth, medium to full body, with a nice lingering bitterness that is customary for this style. The finish is on the drier  side to avoid being cloyingly sweet. The flavors are very rich and complex and will benefit from some bottle aging.
CHEERS!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Russian Imperial Stout, Secondary


Racked to secondary today. Gravity was 1.020 which places ABV at 8.66%. There is still some airlock activity. Color is a deep brown with orange/red highlights. Aromas of chocolate, spice, prunes, and dried stone fruit. Flavors of bitter chocolate, dried stone fruit, and spice, with a lingering bitterness. The finish is slightly dry due to the rye malt. The alcohol is warming but not "hot". This beer will be in secondary for about two weeks or until it clears up. It will definitely require some aging in the bottle to allow the flavors to meld. I'll post again when it is time to bottle.
CHEERS!

Friday, January 2, 2015

Russian Imperial Stout

My brew day went fairly well. I was a quart over with my water measurement, but ended up with 5.5 gallons going into the fermenter. Had a little boil over when the hops went in. (Not fun scrubbing the outside of my kettle that had caramelized wort and hops baked on.) Projected SG was 1.093. Actual was 1.086, most likely due to the excess water. Projected ABV should be around 9.5%. The color was calculated at 42 SRM, but I'm not sure if it will be that dark. The wort is definitely dark brown with ruby and amber/orange hues. Full krausen at day 1 and everything is looking good! I'm excited to see how the flavor develops. The rye and chocolate rye should add some nice spiciness. The Special B should add some deep caramel and raisin/prune flavors. I'm keeping the fermentation temperature around 60-62 degrees with Fermentis US-05 yeast which is a high attenuator and neutral in flavor.
Thanks for reading!
CHEERS!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

A New Year, A New Beer

Hello all! Just a quick note about ringing in the new year by brewing a style of beer I have not brewed before. For those that know me, you know Altbier and Stout are two of my favorite styles. Well, I decided to go big and picked up the ingredients for a Russian Imperial Stout. And for those who know me in the brewing realm, you know I like to play with flavors and go outside the box. Well, this brew will be no exception. I picked up 18.25 lbs of malt for this brew which will be the biggest beer I have brewed to date. I'll be using Gambrinus ESB malt as the base, Briess Roasted Barley, Dingeman's Special B Malt, Weyermann Melaniodin Malt, Weyermann Rye Malt, and Weyermann Chocolate Rye Malt. I'm seeking the raisin/prune flavors from the Special B, and the spiciness from the Weyermann Rye to add some uniqueness to this Russian Imperial Stout. It will be pushing 10% ABV, so it will indeed require some aging. This may be my holiday beer for 2015! I'll be posting again when I brew. Thanks for reading!
CHEERS!