Sunday, June 19, 2011

Brew Day: Ordinary Bitter Redeux

While my last attempt at an ordinary bitter turned out ok, there were some issues with the beer that I wasn't completely happy about. First, due to work issues, I wasn't able to keg the beer when I wanted to and had to let beer sit in the primary for more than three weeks. Under normal circumstances, I would never let a low gravity beer sit on the yeast cake for such a long time, especially a bitter. Also, my three/four day dry hop turned into a two week one. As a result, the beer had a slightly muddled flavor and wasn't particularly crisp tasting. Moreover, the Essex ale yeast I used left a 'tart' flavor in the beer, even though my ferment temps for the first week were at a steady 68F. While the beer wasn't as good as I had hoped, I have decided to brew a similar version with a few changes. The grain bill is simpler and the beer is fermented with WY1882 Thames Valley II. Also, as I have finally finished off my old supply of (U.K) EKG hops, I will be using fresh (U.K) "Organic" Kent Goldings for this batch. 

The first version
Creek Bitter II : Standard/Ordinary Bitter

Recipe Specifics:
-----------------
Batch Size (Gal): 4.00
Total Grain (Lbs): 5.50
Anticipated OG: 1.036
Anticipated FG: 1.010
Anticipated SRM: 9-12
Anticipated IBU: 30
Efficiency: 70%
Boil Time: 60 Minutes 

Grain/Sugar
------------ 
90.0%  - 5.0 lbs. Pale Malt, Maris Otter (TF)
10.0%  - 0.50 lbs. Crystal Malt 80L

Hops
-----
0.75 oz. EKG @ 60 min for 22.6 IBU
0.50 oz. EKG @ 15 min for 8.9 IBU
0.50 oz. EKG @ flameout

Yeast: Wyeast 1882 Thames Valley II
Mash 154F for 60 min
Brewed 19 June


Edit: The smack pack hardly inflated and the resulting starter produced a tiny amount of yeast after two days. While I was going to let it ride and see if it took off or not, I ended up pitching an additional smack pack just to be on the safe side.

4 comments:

  1. Hey, can you remember how this one tasted? Looks like a nice recipe. All out of beer after my Paddy's day party, so wouldn't mind trying out something I can turn over pretty quickly.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Yeah it turned out good. Or at least I indicated as such in my notes. Though at the time I was still experimenting with crystal malts and I was on a dark crystal kick. If I were to re-brew this today, I'd cut the crystal back to 6-8% and go with a 40L or 60L. Also a small amount of toasted maris otter really adds a nice touch of complexity, if you want a little extra in the beer. I've been drinking the heck out of my recent "session bitter" and it is really tasty. Definitely on the short list to re-brew.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yeah it turned out good. Or at least I indicated as such in my notes. Though at the time I was still experimenting with crystal malts and I was on a dark crystal kick. If I were to re-brew this today, I'd cut the crystal back to 6-8% and go with a 40L or 60L. Also a small amount of toasted maris otter really adds a nice touch of complexity, if you want a little extra in the beer. I've been drinking the heck out of my recent "session bitter" and it is really tasty. Definitely on the short list to re-brew.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thanks for getting back to me. I think I will have a go at your session bitter. I will probably go with victory malt instead of the toasted MO, as I don't have a mill. My local HBS is quite close and it's just too easy to get them to pack up a recipe and crush it for me on the morning of a brew day. Also I may still use the WY1882-pc on it, as I've been looking for an excuse to use it and WLP006 is not an option. Will let you know how it goes.

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