Jul 16, 2010

Don Juan Sasion / The Funky Don Juan

Don Juan Saison - 1.060 - 1.009 - 6.7% ABV

Funky Don Juan - 1.060 - 1.005 -7.2% ABV

35 IBU

Target Gravity - 1.066
64% efficiency -- I have no idea why it is so low. I seemed to have more wort than I thought I would.

Ten gallons of saison -- half of which to be funked with the dregs of two bottles of Orval. This is my first attempt using yeast strains outside the world of sacchromyces.

View the recipe page here, and ignore the fact that I did not enter many of the more technical information.

After much research I have decided to add the dregs along with the Belgian Saison strain that will be the base yeast. I had considered adding it in a secondary, but have decided after much reading and question asking to add it at the beginning since the Saison yeast is likely to finish with a very low final gravity, leaving little for the Brett in the dregs to much on.

Each beer is getting a 3qt starter.

Brewday Notes / Reflections:
7.17.10 -- Things went rather well except for low efficiency, which I think has something to do with the amount of wort I collected. I figured for 13 gallons instead of the usual 12 since my last batch seemed short a gallon at the end; this one had at least a gallon extra. Maybe I should go back to twelve. There is also a chance I made an error measuring the water. I probably lost a few points due to the fact that my boil was not as hard as normal. I thought I was wasting gas keeping it turned up so much, but now think I should turn it up a little more. Regardless, a 1.060 saison is going to work just fine.
7.18.10 -- about ten hours after pitching, both beers show vigorous activity. Ambient temperature is around 76, and beers are in water baths that I am going to add ice to now to keep the temp as low as I can using this strategy.
7.21.10 -- fermentation has slowed to a crawl, so I moved the carboys from downstairs where they have been between 72 and 76 degrees to upstairs where it is already above 80 before 9:00 a.m.

Don Juan Notes:

7.27.10 -- Transferred into secondary so I could wash the yeast. Gravity is at 1.027 which makes it slower than the funky version. The tastes of the samples are much different, with this one being much cleaner without the yeasty notes that I am sure will develop more as the beer finishes. I will leave this one alone for a while, and then check the gravity again.

8.8.10 -- gravity reads 1.023 -- going much slower than last time I brewed saison, and it is much hotter. We have been having 100+ heat indexes for the last week and a half at least. The yeast character is beginning to show through much more, but the finish is really sweet. I am going to wait much longer than a week and a half to test this one again.

8.28.10 -- gravity reads 1.017, which is 72% attenuated. Still has a while to go, and we are at week six. I may have to pitch more yeast to finish this off before it is too late. Sample tastes good, but still a little sweet.

9.14.10 -- Gravity 1.014 - 77% attenuated and still moving. pitched about 8oz starter made with washed yeast at time of last reading agitated regularly after repitch. Still hoping for attenuation in the 80s.

10.25.10 -- Kegged. Final Gravity = 1.009 - 85% attenuated. Sample is nice and dry, but I am not able to taste the yeast characteristics to the extent that I expected. Perhaps carbonation will help. This is going to be a good one nonetheless.

2.18.11 -- Don Juan Saison gets a collective score of 36 at the Big Beers Belgians and Barleywines Festival in Vail, Colorado. It was even moved to the second round, the "mini B.O.S." round. Click to enlarge thumbnails:



Funky Don Juan Notes:

7.23.10 -- 87 degrees ( ambient temp is 80 at time of taking sample). Gravity = 1.024 -- adjusted to 1.027. The sample tastes very yeasty and I am surprised that I can already taste a little dry wooly funk. I thought this needed more time to even be noticeable. I will check in a few days before taking it back downstairs at around 1.020 so it can cool down a bit and give the brett more sugars to eat.

7.25.10 -- Gravity down to 1.024. I will move it back downstairs tomorrow or the next day. It shed three points in two days.

8.8.10 --Gravity Reads 1.008 -- the brett must have really done some work since I brought it down stairs, though the temp has been in the 80s in the laundry room where it is. The funk is really shining through nicely with a sweaty type taste that goes well with the hops. It may be time to secondary this one soon.

8.15.10 -racked into secondary. Gravity= 1.006 at 80 degrees. Adjusted to 1.008, the same as a week ago. Sample seems like it is drying out a bit. bottled about 36 oz with .75tsp table sugar.

9.23.10 -- Drinking the big bottle I primed early: the beer is very dry and without any high alcohols with a lovely funk that I know will increase, which is good since it is a little fainter than i expect it to be. This is a very enjoyable beer, and I cannot wait to enjoy the rest once the time comes.

11.15.10 -- Gravity reads 1.005. Bottling at 4 volumes.

12.19.10 -- Tried one of these and the taste was very buttery and the mouthfeel was rather slick. Discussion on Homebrewtalk . . .

3.26.12 -- Won second best in show at Peach State Brew-Off 2012: