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Showing posts from April, 2020

Chateau Jiahu Too

Quite a few years ago, Dogfish Head founder Sam Calagione worked with Dr. Patrick (Pat) McGovern to re-create an ancient brew based on a chemical analysis of residue found in 9000-year-old pottery from the Jiahu region of China.  The analysis of that pottery showed a combination of residues from barley, honey, and rice, along with grape and/or hawthorn berry.  Using this information, Dogfish Head and "Dr. Pat" (as he's known to many people) created a beer they called Chateau Jiahu.

This was a beer I was very fond of from the first sip.  It has a flavor that immediately invokes a combination of sake (rice wine), beer, and mead, with a mild sweetness from the hawthorn berry.  It's incredibly easy to drink despite the higher ABV.
Dr. Pat's book Ancient Brews - Rediscovered and Recreatedcontains a malt-extract-based recipe to recreate the beer.
I brewed a batch of this a while back, and it turned out quite well.  For this batch, I'm swapping out the (4 pounds of) …

Tut Henket Too

Years ago, working with Dr. Pat McGovern, Dogfish Head's Sam Calagione produced a line of ancient ales, including one based on information found in Egyptian heiroglyphics and (I think) some pottery shards.  The resulting beer, which Dogfish Head labeled "Ta Henket" seemed to do well in the market initially, then vanished, reportedly due to low sales.  I was always a fan of that beer, and bought it whenever I found it.  With it off the market, my only hope is to brew my own version.  Fortunately, Dr. Pat's book contains an extract-based homebrew recipe for Ta Henket.

My first attempt at brewing the beer met with some success.  It was a bit darker than the Dogfish Head beer, but nonetheless pretty tasty after it aged for several months.  One of my friends took a particular liking to it, and I only have about three bottles of it left.

I've decided for this batch to shift away from malt extract to a Pilsner malt base. This should lighten the color of the beer and redu…

Belgian Witbier 1.0

Early on in my exploration of (drinking) craft beer, I came across a few examples of the Belgian Witbier style such as Hoegaarden.  These were light, flavorful beers that could be really enjoyable in warm weather.  Until now, though, I've never brewed one.  I'm not sure why.  It is time to change that...

For those not familiar with the Witbier style the BJCP judging criteria describe it as "a refreshing, elegant, tasty, moderate strength wheat-based ale" with a malty sweet grain flavor, zesty orange fruitiness, and often a crisp, dry, slightly tart finish.  It's not a style for hop-heads, though, as it is described as having a hop bitterness of "low to none" in the judging criteria.
My goals, based on judging criteria and personal preference, for this beer are: Aroma:  Orange and coriander up front, with some malty and herbal elementsColor:  Pale gold to yellow, cloudy from the yeast and wheat, with good head retentionFlavor:  Malty sweet, prominent oran…