Sunday, February 9, 2014

Ain't Dead Yet

Hard to believe its been two months since I've posted anything. The short and simple reason for the lapse has to do with a new job, being around lots and lots of beer every day, and sorta feeling burned out after seven years or so of constant home brewing. For a while there I thought I'd just delete the ole' blog and start something completely new, say, like taking up snowboarding or long distance running. Haha. Seriously though, home brewing is a lot of fun and with hard work, you can make better beer than the big boys, but don't take it too seriously.

Anyways, as my carboys have largely sat abandoned since November, I figured I'd brew something quick and easy. I was originally going to go with a super simple, malty English bitter, but I have a ton of 2012 hops taking up freezer space and I really need to use them up. Therefore, I'm keeping the English malt base and going with a blend of random odds and ends. This blend is mostly Galaxy, Amarillo, Centennial, and Simcoe. Water is all RO, built up to around 150ppm sulfate and 30ppm chloride. Yeast is some very fresh MJ44 slurry.

Lastly, as a little treat for myself, I opened up one of my last bottles of Gale's Old Prize Ale, date unknown. I was a little worried the beer was going to be a dumper when the cork completely disintegrated as I tried to remove it, but on trying the beer, all was good. Like really freaking good. Unlike the other Old Prize Ales I've sampled, most of which had a meaty-oxidized-yeasty flavor, this one was in top shape, exuding flavors of sherry, balsamic-cherries, and lots of prune and raisin. Like a unsoured version of Rodenbach Grand Cru. I just hope my other bottles taste as good. I'm current trying to culture Brett from the bottle dregs.
Hoppy Bitter : American Pale Ale         

Recipe Specifics:
Batch Size (Gal): 4.50
Total Grain (Lbs): 7.75
Anticipated OG: 1.045
Anticipated FG: 1.010
Anticipated SRM: 9
Anticipated IBU: 40
Efficiency: 70%
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

90.3% - 7.00 lbs. Pale Malt, Maris Otter
6.5%  - 0.50 lbs. Dark Crystal
3.2%  - 0.25 lbs. Amber Malt

0.50 oz. Columbus @ 60 min for 13 IBU
1.00 oz. Hop Blend @ 20 min for 16 IBU
1.00 oz. Hop Blend @ 10 min for 11 IBU
3.00 oz. Hop Blend @ flameout

Yeast: MJ44 American Ale
Mash 154F for 60 min
Brewed on 9 February