Stovetop batch #3

October 27th, 2011 | Tags: ,

I brewed the third in my series of stovetop batches tonight. I shot for an American Amber, and you can download the recipe in XML from my wiki. It uses US-05 yeast, a variety that produces pretty straightforward American ale, and Centennial & Cascade hops, both signature American cultivars. The malt body is the same as the first two batches: amber malt extract, molasses, and some demerera sugar to boost the ABV. Still not sure what I’ll name it, but I’m already smacking my lips thinking about how delicious it’s going to taste.

It’s my first batch in my new brewpot, a full gallon larger than the old one. I did not commit a boilover this time, but I did fail to stir as frequently as I ought, resulting in a scorched bottom. So, this pot is officially broken in :) After boiling the wort, my original gravity was slightly higher than predicted (1.056 instead of 1.048), which happens sometimes. So if the yeast ferment it all the way down to the predicted 1.012, it’ll be a little stronger. [Update: I forgot to account for the gallon of top-up water I used. With this, the theoretical OG would be 1.037. This makes considerably more sense given that the specific gravity of the wort before boil was also a couple points shy of its target--1.051 instead of 1.054.] [Update 11/1: Ignore all that claptrap. So, it turns out I had forgotten to refactor my recipe for the new equipment. With the changes in place in BrewTarget, my numbers are actually good: 1.050 instead of 1.044 for boil SG, and 1.037 instead of 1.040 for OG.] I am trying a new swamp cooling setup, too, so I’m a little worried about a high fermentation. I pitched the yeast at about 76F, with the expectation that my evaporative cooling setup will kick it down to 68 or so in the next twelve hours. I am checking it on a more or less hourly basis, and keeping a log.

If everything goes well, the yeast will do most of the work by Monday, and then they’ll clean up after themselves over the next few weeks. One thing I didn’t have on hand was Irish moss, a fining agent. It is said to help clarify the beer, binding to proteins that contribute to haziness. It weirds me out because I am fairly certain I had some, so I’m not really sure where it got to now. But I am looking on this as an experiment to see whether Irish moss actually does something.

I’ll probably bottle it the week before Thanksgiving. I’d like to have it carbonated by Thanksgiving Day, but I need to give the beer at least 21 days in the fermenter, so it’ll still taste a bit green. I aim to use maple syrup as my priming sugar. This will round out the other elements of this prospectively delicious beer, and continue the nice American theme in the ingredients.

I hope you’ll try some!

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