Saturday, 6 November 2010

Beer #8 - Belgian Blonde Ale

It's brewday again, this time a rough attempt at a Belgian Blonde ale. And once again the method is getting a bit of a rough change. This time I tried a little steep at mash temperature of the speciality grains, and also twiddled a few other bits.

Belgian Blonde
  • Biscuit Malt 0.11kg
  • Munich Malt 0.11kg
  • Vienna Malt 0.11kg
  • Extra Light DME 0.65kg (start of boil)
  • Extra Light DME 3.2kg (late addition)
  • Hallertauer 40g (90 mins)
  • Saaz 20g (15 mins) 20g
  • Irish Moss (15 mins) tsp
  • Light brown soft sugar (late addition) 0.23kg
  • WLP550
  • Water to 23L
So, I got the temperature of 7L of water up to about 68/69C took the stock-pot off the heat added the bag with the malts and wrapped the stockpot in a fleece. After 40 minutes and a cup of coffee I fished out the bag, 'sparged' by pouring some previously boiled water through the bag and giving it a squeeze, put the stock-pot back on the stove-top and added the first malt extract addition. Once it hit the boil I added the first hop bag and hit the button on the timer.

At this point I had a bit of an interlude drilling holes in logs and hammering in mushroom-spawn impregnated dowels.

The timer beeped and in went the Saaz. After the 15 minutes were up I took the hop bags out and again 'sparged' each with half a kettle of water. At this point I added the rest of the extract and the sugar, which was replacing Belgian candi sugar as I couldn't source any. I turned the gas on again and let the wort come back up to the boil to help dissolve all the clumped bits of extract. The addition of more volume of water, of course, meant that I couldn't cool to pitching temperature simply by chucking in the rest of the water. Not having any other way of cooling I had to just leave it for a couple of hours and start tidying up a bit. And had lunch which I'd totally forgotten about. I'd taken a hydrometer reading which was bang on Beersmith's estimate of 1.068. I had, however, forgotten that the wort was hot and when I looked later after it had cooled in the sample jar it was at 1.072. Beersmith reckons this is 7.45%. Oops. I hope the yeast is sufficient without being cooked up into a starter. It went straight in as soon as the temperature looked OK.

Have I created a monster?

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