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Showing posts from April, 2018

Citrus Saison 1.0

The finished beer, poured into a glass As I noted in an earlier post, my Saison scored relatively poorly in competition, gaining an average score of 25.  I actually liked it much more than the judges did, but it inspired me to try again before the next competition.  One thing the judges commented on was that there was a mix of spice and fruit in the flavor (all, by the way, from the yeast). They suggested that I pick one flavor and go with it. I decided to focus on citrus, since the weather is finally warming up and a nice citrusy Saison sounded good to me.  What follows is my own recipe. I decided to use Mandarina Bavaria hops, which impart a mandarin orange flavor, combined with Lemon Drop hops, which impart a lemon flavor. That, combined with the citrusy notes that should come from the Saison yeast, ought to tilt the flavor balance toward citrus.  We'll see, of course. Ingredients 4 pounds Briess Pilsner Malt 8 ounces Dingeman's Pilsen (all I had on hand) 8 ounc

Salsbury's ESB v1.3

I entered my ESB v1.2 at Barley's and received some decent scores (28-33), but there were comments about how it was much too bitter (and one from a third judge saying it had no hops bitterness at all).  I'm inclined to agree with the judges who found it too bitter.  This time around, I want to fix that, so I can put the modified version into competition. Ingredients 3.5 pounds Muntons Maris Otter Malt 12 ounces Caramel 40L 8 ounces Caramel 60L 6 ounces Caramel 10L 6 ounces Victory Malt 0.4 ounces Styrian Goldings @ 6.2% AA (60 min.) 0.4 ounces Styrian Goldings @ 6.2% AA (30 min.) 0.4 ounces Styrian Goldings @ 6.2% AA (10 min.) 1 packet Lallemand ESB Yeast 1/2 vial White Labs Clarity Ferm 3 gallons plus 16 ounces starting water According to the Picobrew recipe crafter, this beer should have the following characteristics: Style: 11.C Strong Bitter Original Gravity (OG):  1.057 SG Final Gravity (FG): 1.017 SG IBUs: 31 SRM: 15 ABV: 5.2% Batch Size:

Mandarina Pale Ale 1.0

A little over a year ago, I came up with a blonde ale recipe based on little more than the fact that one of the home brewing shops online had Mandarina Bavaria hops on sale. I'd never had a beer made with the hops, but their reported mandarin orange flavor sounded like it might make a great beer. I decided to pair it with some orange blossom honey I'd purchased as well as some dried orange peel. I combined all this into a blonde ale recipe and hoped it wouldn't be too much orange. It wasn't.  That beer took second place at the 2017 Ohio State Fair Home Brewing Competition in the fruit beer category.  It's been popular with friends and family, too. I decided to brew a new batch this year, maybe for competition, or maybe for consumption only.  At brewing time, I realized I did not have Bitter Orange Peel or Orange Blossom Honey, so I substituted Sweet Orange Peel and "generic" (natural) honey. Ingredients 3 pounds 2-row Pale Ale Malt 1 pound

Barley's 23rd Annual Homebrew Competition

This was my second year as a competitor in the Barley's Annual Homebrew Competition . Last year I managed to take third place, losing to the very skilled A.J. Zanyk and his very nice Baltic Porter.  It's been on my "bucket list" to see a beer of mine on tap at a brewery or bar, and winning the Barley's competition would make that happen. I entered the following beers this year, listed below in the order I liked them, from most to least: Dark Abbey Belgian Strong Dark Ale (average score: 40.7) Bluegrass State Kentucky Common v1.0  (average score: 36.5) Tripel Turbinado Belgian Tripel (average score: 35.5) Salsbury's Saison v2.0 (average score: 25) Jamaican Me Thirsty Tropical Stout v1.0 (average score: 20.6) Salsbury's ESB v1.2 (average score: 30.3) Lonely Monk Trappist Single (average score: 27) To get into the final round of the competition, a beer had to score 40 or better.  My Dark Abbey beer managed that (just barely) and made it int

2018 Dubbel 2.0

As I've mentioned before, I've been trying to perfect (to my taste, at least) recipes for the Trappist Single, Belgian Dubbel, Belgian Tripel, and Belgian Quadrupel.  The recipe I've had the most trouble with is the Belgian Dubbel.  I've made several, and they've all disappointed me, whether they were my own recipe, a published clone recipe for a commercially-available Dubbel I like, or any other.  In many cases, they come out too light in color, with little or no dark fruit flavor. In others, they come out dry or overly bitter.  My most-recent attempt before today had a practically perfect color but still missed the prune/plum flavor I've been looking for.  Today's recipe began as a BYO Magazine recipe for the Belgian Dubbel style, modified a bit.  I replaced the hops with my preferred blend and changed the candi sugar rocks out for syrup. Ingredients 5 pounds Belgian Pilsen 1.5 pounds Belgian Pale Ale 4 ounces Belgian Caramunich 8 ounces D-90 Can