Dec 26, 2011

1911 Boston Rustler

1911 Boston Rustler 
1.051 -- 1.012 -- 5.1% ABV
38 IBU 

My go at Classic American Pilsner using American Ale yeast at a low temperature.  This will also be a bit of a diversion since I am only brewing five gallons, and I am doing it inside.  If this method works well, I may do this a little more often in between cranking up the big brewery.  I would like for this to become a way to make smaller, perhaps historical batches.

I chose the name based on the Braves namesake of that particular year, as well as to commemorate the centennial of such.  2011 also marks what I believe to be the centennial of our home.  I was conflicted with the option of naming the beer "Red CAP" since the Red Caps were the original name of the Braves, and CAP for obvious reasons, but I did not want one to expect a red beer.  I may end up using that name later, as I do like it very much, and it lends itself to telling the story of how the Red Sox stole the eventual Braves name.

Recipe here:

Everything about the recipe is accurate with the exception of the IBUs.  I will collect about 4.6 gallons pre-boil, and then will dillute with purified water post-boil.  The gravity of the actual boil will diminish the hop utilization level by a few points.
Reflections on Brewday:
Brewing inside was a nice change, but it still took almost as long.  I need to remember what a pain in the ass whole hops can be, even when I am not using a plate chiller.  Next time I do this, I will use hop bags or the spider-type strainer I made.  This would have helped make wort collection easier.  Chilling was the highpoint -- much faster than normal, which I attribute to chilling a much smaller volume (4 gallons) and then diluting it with bottled water.

1911 Boston Rustler Notes:
12.30.11 -- pitched yeast
1.15.12 -- Gravity reads 1.012 (76% attenuated -- calling it done)

4.19.12 -- The 1911 Rustler turned out quite good, though the only measurement I can use is the BJCP style guide, which supports this claim. This beer features both a corn sweetness and high level of bitterness that are not seen in modern American lagers. Fermenting this with US-05 at low temperatures (and then lagering for 2+ months) really helped as well. This is something I will make again. Very drinkable.

Dec 10, 2011

Rudy Lycanthrope / Lunar Eclipse Wheat

Lunar Eclipse Wheat -- 1.050 -- 1.012 -- 5% ABV
Rudy Lycanthrope -- 1.050
19 IBU

The idea here is to make something of which half can be soured, and the other half can be ready relatively soon.  What we get is a Flanders-ish sour sort-of red beer and a reddish wheat beer.  I am not comfortable calling this beer red anything until I see it in a glass, as red is a hard color to nail down.

The Malts:

12 lbs Wheat Malt
3 lbs Munich Malt
3 lbs Caravienne Malt
3 lbs Aromatic Malt


3oz Hallertauer  (3.8% AA)-- 60 minutes

Lunar Eclipse -- Wyeast 3068
Rudy Lycanthrope -- S-04 then buggs

10.5 gallons strike water
2.6 absorbed
5 gallons sparge water + additions for decoction boil-off

The Mash:
Here's the plan: Initial protein rest will be at 122 degrees. After twenty minutes, I will pull a large (about a third of the mash) decoction and heat it to 155. I will hold it there with a lid and a sleeping bag for about fifteen minutes before bringing to a boil. At that point I will add the decoction to the main mash until the saccrification temperature of 146. This rest will be held for one hour, and then another smaller decoction will be pulled and boiled to bring the mash to mash-out temperature (around 170).

Brew Day Reflections:
Everything went great great until it was time to use the chiller.  I had become pretty careless to use the pot I used for decoctions to add either the sparge water or some of the first runnings into the kettle.  Shit got clogged.  Bad.  I abandoned the chiller and went old-school with the immersion chiller, that I am glad that I still have to use as my pre-chiller.  Also, this batch will prove whether or not Star-San is harmful since I forgot that I had packed the chiller with it after my last brew about a month ago, so when I turned it on to sanitize (it wasn't clogged at this point), and about a pint became integrated with the wort in the kettle -- and I was sober too. 

12.11.11 -- Pitched yeast into both beers

Lunar Eclipse Notes:

12.29.11 -- Gravity reads 1.012. Kegged.

Rudy Lycanthrope Notes:

12.21.11 -- racked into a secondary and dosed with bugs from Dirty Blonde, Gueuze Tilquin and Wiezen Bam, as well as the dregs from one bottle of Orval.  Gravity was 1.014.
12.11.12 -- 1.5oz Medium Toast Hungarian oak cubes
1.20.13 - Tasted for wood flavors. They were noticeable, but still faint. I will try again in about two weeks.
2.18.13 - Tasted again, and wood flavors are still a little faint. Since cubes work slower, I am going to let this sit a while longer. Sourness is good, and seems to have reached a terminal level. I should consider a turbid or other specific mash to let bugs get to more sugar (next time around).