Sunday, January 3, 2016

Rauchbier err...Smoked Scottish Ale?

This beer evolved quite a bit after I went to the brew store.  Instead of my original intention of a Rauchbier that used cherry smoked malt and an Alt yeast, I ended up using a Scottish yeast, pale chocolate and some crystal malt.  My hop selection even changed, and on a lark I did a long concentrated boil of the first runnings!

This brewing session was a first for me........ brewing when it was less than 10F outside, not much fun. I did have an extra pair of hands this brew session though which made the clean up process much easier!  A buddy who is interested in learning how to brew came over to watch, learn, and ask questions.  Looking back I really wish that I didn't have to improvise with the recipe so much because there is a lot to take in during your first brewing session, especially considering my equipment is more involved than many (most?) homebrewers setups.  I have pumps, electric heating, PID control, auto sparging, etc, etc. So the fact that I had to adjust the recipe on-the-fly didn't help.  I had thought about going back to basics (no pumps, etc.) to keep things simple while teaching someone about grainbills, what mashing, sparging, and boiling are for, but frankly I was too lazy to go back to manual lautering/sparging/filling the BK...........

All in all I think this beer will turn out pretty tasty, just a bit different than I originally envisioned, and for all the chaos my buddy is still interested in learning more.  I'm also really hopeful that my second go around with cherry smoked malt will be a bit different than my first.  That first time the smoke was far too overpowering, and I had to age that beer for many years before eventually souring it and calling it a Lichtenhainer, before it was palatable.

There should be several new posts/recipes in the coming weeks as I will be on a brewing tear in early January to fill up my kegs again before the arrival of a new baby, because something tells me I wont have a lot of time this spring.......

Little Smokey
Malt Bill
Amt (lbs)Type
7.0Belgian Pale Malt
4.0Cherry Smoked Malt
0.25Pale Chocolate
Amt (oz)TypeTime
0.75First Gold (7.2%)60
Mash Schedule
170F2qt/lb15min - vorlauf
YeastScottish Ale WY1728 - 500mL starter
74% effIBU23
7gal BoilFG


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