Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Simcoe 100

I've heard good things about Simcoe hops. Its a varietal I've never used before. Thanks to a exceedingly successful IPA (Hop Blend IPA), and a good APA (Matrimony Ale), I'm going through a hop kick this summer. I figure now is as good as any to become familiar with a handful of hops that can be used heavily in beer styles that showcase them.

"Simcoe 100" will be a deep colored, BIG amber ale in the realm of 8%. Exclusively hopped with Simcoe, it will reach a level of 100 IBU's. That's a BU-GU ratio of about 1.22, and with a high Alpha Acid percentage, the flavor and aroma should come out bold and beautiful.

In comparison to the Hop Blend IPA, I expect this beer to be bigger in all areas. Bigger malt sweetness, bigger body, more residual sugars, strong head retention, fuller hop bitterness, huge hop flavor and aroma, and a deeper amber color.

The OG came out 10 points higher than expected. This also happened with the yeast starter brewed for this batch. I'm not really experienced with how malt extract effects the gravity of a wort. I suppose there is a rating for various malt extracts. Strange how all-grain brewing is much easier in this department.

Its out of the ordinary for me to get creative and design labels for my beers. Something about this one mysteriously propelled me to do so. Now I have to figure out a way to get it from...don't laugh...a word document, onto the web. David...can you help me? Well, Sarah was able to do it. Thank you dear. The ABV in on the label isn't correct, cause I didn't know it at the time of designing it. Just mentally input 8.6% in that little white oval.

Simcoe 100

4 lbs. Alexander's Pale Liquid Malt Extract
5 lbs. 2-Row Pale Malt
.25 lb. Crystal 40L
.5 lb. Crystal 60L
.25 lb. Special B
.25 lb. CaraPils

1.4 oz. Simcoe, 11.9%, pellet, 105min
.90 oz. Simcoe, 11.9%, pellet, 20min
.90 oz. Simcoe, 11.9%, pellet, 5min
.90 oz. Simcoe, 11.9%, pellet, KO
2.0 oz. Simcoe, 11.9%, pellet, DRY

Wyeast 1028: London Ale, slurry from 1 gallon batch

Brew Day Stats

Brew Day: 8/14/07
Secondary: 8/26/07
Bottled: 9/18/07

Water Adjustment: 1 gallon distilled, .75 tsp Gypsum, .25 tsp CaCl, pinch of salt

H2O/Grain Ratio: 1.45 qts/lb
Mash Ph: acidic (ph papers didn't change color)
Sacch Rest Time: 1 hour
Sacch Rest Temp: 153°F
Mash Out Temp: 162°F - low again

2nd Batch Sparge: 2.5 gallons at 182°F
2nd Batch Temp: 166°F- low again

Pre-Boil Vol: 5 gallons
Pre-Boil SG w/o extract: 1.038
Boil Time: 1:30 hours
Post Boil Vol: 4.25 gallons

OG: 1.084
IBU: 100
Color/SRM: 15-18
Mash Efficiency: Approx. 94.2% (Gravity from extract may influence)
FG: 1.0184
ABW: 6.88%
ABV: 8.61%

Fermentation Temp: 74°F
Cost: $31.61, $.71/12oz., $4.26/6-pack


1. Showed activity, and layer of early foam by night fall
2. Progressed activity next morning
3. Great activity with very thick foam later in the day Wednesday
4. Scent from airlock is a wonderful myriad of fruits, flowers, pine
5. One week later, fermentation has slowed way down. There are still bubbles rising, so I'll let it go some more.
6. 8/26/07 - Transfered to secondary over 2 ounces of Simcoe pellets with an SG of around 1.023 (approx.8%)
7. Tasting at racking revealed a a sweet fruity taste. Sort-of an unbalanced flavor.
8. Bottled 9/18/07 and was delayed a few days because the carboy still look a tad bit active
9. 2 Bottles got a small dose of Cascade cones
10. On 10/4/07 the CO2 level is still a little low, so I'm continuing to turn the bottles.
11. At 2 weeks this beer is FULL of flavor, quite complex, very fruity, good mouthfeel, aromatic, and with a masked alcoholic strength. The deep amber/red color is simply beautiful.


Travis said...


This past weekend I tried Ph testing with my mash and treating my water ahead of time.

Initially, with my mash water, I had a Ph of about 6.6 so I added some gypsum and got it down to 5.5 before I mashed.

Now I didn't check it while the processes was going on (I forgot) and I did a last second check of it at the end and it looked like it was at 5.2 (as best as I could tell, I am using the strips). So I started to batch sparge.

Now when I did my gravity check, I realized (to late) that I had missed my target OG by a mile! Fortunately I was brewing a small batch of Barley Wine and it's not a big deal, it's just going to be a "lite" barley wine.

However, I thought treating my water and tracking my Ph was going to help my efficiency, though it appears my efficiency went down. Now there are a few things that may have contributed to this so I am not going to jump to conclusions just yet, but I am still a little confused.

Did I miss something in the Ph process?



Ted Danyluk said...

Travis, I will reply over on your site in the entry about this situation.