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Sunday, May 18, 2014

Spring Spruce Tip Blonde

Mash day started at 7:00 a.m.  The mash bill consists of Weyermann Pilsner Malt, Weyermann Munich I, and Briess Caramel 10.  Strike temperature 167F to achieve mash temperature of 155F, single infusion mash.  Not sure on the quantity of spruce tips this first go round.  I'll play it safe and go lighter than I was originally planning.

After some consideration and input from others who have used spruce tips, I will use 10 spruce tips at 20 minutes, 10 spruce tips at 15 minutes, 10 spruce tips at 10 minutes, and 25 spruce tips at flame out. I'll be hopping with Chinook and Cascade, late additions, since I don't know how much bitterness will be contributed from the spruce tips.  I chose Chinook hops for their pine and citrus flavors and aromas and Cascade hops for their Citrus notes as well to highlight the spruce tips which have a citrus and slightly resinous aroma to them.

Boil underway.  Smells awesome.  Pilsner, Munich I, and Caramel 10 smelling delicious already.  I'm going to be adding the hops in late additions to keep the bitterness down but impart a lot of aromas.

And into the fermenter after cooling.  Recipe OG was 1.052.  Actual is 1.054.  I ended up with 5 gallons going into the fermenter.  Lost quite a bit on the boil.  Usually have 5.25 gallons going into primary.

The aromas of citrus and resinous pine are quite nice.  If I lose some aroma through the brew process, I will try "dry" sprucing.  Updates to come on the progress.  CHEERS!

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