Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Mild or Porter, Scottish Ale

After a long while of not brewing and not wanting to brew, I'm slowly coming around. I recently brewed an India Pale Lager, loaded with Nelson Sauvin and Brewers Gold hops, and before that I made an Imperial Stout that I aged on cocao nibs and vanilla beans. At just over a month in the keg, that beer is tasting mighty fine. This week, I feel like brewing something a little closer to the heart, especially since I finally got a hold of a yeast that I've always wanted to brew with... believe it or not, Belhaven's house strain. A Scottish styled "something" is in order.

Following my new brewing manta, "don't take stupid s*** too seriously," I am trying to avoid following set beer styles. After years of following the BJCP guidelines for nearly all my beers, there is something about taking a bunch of ingredients and combining them in a way that doesn't quite fit an established beer style that feels rather liberating. For this beer, all I want is something that is dark, malty, and mildly porter-ish tasting, coming in around 3.8% abv. To achieve this, I'm going with a base of Gleneagle Marris Otter and combining smaller amounts of medium and dark crystal, brown malt, chocolate malt, and a wee touch of roasted barley. Hopping is all UK fuggles. Fermentation will held in a plastic bucket, so I can easily harvest all the wonderful, doughy yeast that settles on top of the fermenting beer. And that yeast will be used to brew something else. Something properly Scottish. Maybe from Orkney Brewery?

Malcontent : Mild/Porter       

Recipe Specifics:
Batch Size (Gal): 5.5
Total Grain (Lbs): 8.42
Anticipated OG: 1.038
Anticipated FG: 1.010
Anticipated SRM: 22
Anticipated IBU: 18
Efficiency: 70%
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

83.1% - 7.00 lbs. Pale Malt, Maris Otter
5.9%  - 0.50 lbs. Medium Crystal
3.6%  - 0.30 lbs. Brown Malt
3.6%  - 0.30 lbs. Chocolate Malt 
2.4%  - 0.20 lbs. Extra Dark Crystal
1.4%  - 0.12 lbs. Roasted Barley
1.00 oz. UK Fuggles @ 60 min for 15 IBU
0.50 oz. UK Fuggles @ 10 min for 3 IBU

Yeast: Belhaven Ale
Mash 156F for 60 min
Brewed on 23 March


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