Monday, February 23, 2009

Old Fuzz - A Port-Like Brett Old Ale

I’ve wanted to do something really big for awhile now, something that kicks your ass if you sip it too quickly. This idea has been floating around in my head for a few months now after reading Randy Moshers radical brewing.

In the book he talks about a port like beer, but I think he gets some things confused, as he talks about adding sherry flor to a port-like beer, sherry and port are pretty different to me, and port does not use sherry flor. That aside it sounded like a cool idea, I was thinking of giving it a shot, but damn if sherry flor isn’t hard to find, white labs is supposed to have it available year round but I can’t find anywhere that has it.

Something I have been doing lately though is brewing a lot of brett beers, and wyeast has a VSS blend out right now called Old Ale, that’s a blend of sacch and brett; and the brett strain in it sounds like brett lambicus – something I’ve really wanted to play with minus pedio, lacto and aceto. I’m really interested in the pie cherry flavor that they say it produces, I’m hoping to really pull out the pie cherry, and a bit of funk from the brett, toss in some oak, and maybe a bit of buckwheat honey for some molasses type flavors. Now to achieve the high alcohol content, I also plan on fortifying this, I hope to split it into two smaller batches after the primary, one that I will fortify and bottle still, and one that I bottle condition

I plan on mashing high to provide a good deal of sweetness to the fortified version, I’m hoping the brett doesn’t take the FG too low, a really big, really dry funky beer doesn’t sound the greatest to me, but if they do I may just add honey and fortify the whole batch, only time will tell I guess

Old Fuzz – A Port-like Brett Old Ale

3gal:1120: 41IBU

14 lbs Marris Otter
1 lbs Buckwheat Honey - added to secondary

1.00 oz Mt Hood (60min)
0.25 oz Zeus (60min)

Wyeast Old Ale 9097

At bottling I will decide what type of hard liquor I plan on fortifying with, but the still version will end up in the 20% range when is all said and done. I recirculated this time for about 25minutes prior to sparging, a bit longer than I normally do, but I had just finished the return side of my in the works brew system, The pic to the right does not do the wort justice, you could read a newspaper through it if you wanted!

Update 3/22/09 - Bottling, Fortifying & Sweetening
Fortified Version Review - 1/21/2012


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