Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Belgian Blue

Last year's Blueberry 2 is absolutely fantastic, so I want MUST brew another! I've aged a good portion of the batch for one year, and it's still very full in blueberry flavor, and has finally cleared up completely (it's been very cloudy most of the time).

Originally, I was going to brew a Dubbel to pour over the Tripel's Trappist yeast cake. But instead, I'll try fermenting a blueberry ale, the Trappist way. So 8 pounds of plump blueberries will be hand crushed and added to the fermenter, in two stages, after the kreausen settles down. They will be added to a dark Belgian strong ale. Shooting for about 10%, and hopefully an interesting mix of flavors and aromas.

I thoroughly enjoyed the Italian Birrificio Montegioco Braco ale brewed with blueberries, plus the label totally rocks. Both this beer and my Blueberry 2 have a port wine-like quality. So with all the flavors I was getting from my original Blueberry Ale, I think it might be nice with all the Belgian yeast spiciness as well.

Belgian Blue

Grains & Fermentables
7.0 lbs. Belgian Pils
5.0 lbs. Organic 2-Row
2.0 lbs. German Munich
.75 lbs. Belgian Wheat
.75 lbs. Belgian Special B
.75 lbs. British Crystal 80
.25 lbs. Belgian Biscuit

.50 lbs. Candy Sugar clear, after kreasuen settles some
4.0 lbs. Crushed Blueberries, after kreasuen settles
4.0 lbs. Crushed Blueberries, mid primary

.20 oz. Magnum, 14.9%, pellet, 60min.
1.0 oz. Saaz, 5.7%, pellet, 60min
.65 oz. Saaz, 2.3%, pellet, 20min
.35 oz. Saaz, 2.3%, pellet, KO

Wyeast 3787: Trappist High Gravity (yeast cake)

Brew Day Stats

Brewed: 8/5/08
Racked: around 8/26/08
Bottled: 9/9/08

Water Adjustment:
Strike: .5 tsp Gypsum, .5 tsp CaCl, 1 tsp Acid Blend
2nd Sparge: .5 tsp Gypsum

H2O/Grain Ratio: 1.1qt/lb
Mash Ph: 5.3
Sacch. Rest Temp/Time: 156-->153°F/60min
Mash Out Temp/Time: 168°F/10min
1st Batch vol/SG: 4.25gal/1.073

2nd Batch Sparge Vol/H2OTemp/MashTemp: 2.67gal/182°F/168°F
2nd Batch vol/SG: 2.75/1.037

Pre-Boil Vol: 7 gallons
Pre-Boil SG: 1.060
Boil Time: 105min
Post-Boil Vol: 5 gallons
Mash Efficiency: approx. 74%

OG grains: 1.084
OG w/sugar & berries: approx. 1.100
IBU: 32
Color/SRM grains: amber-brown/16
Color/SRM w/berries: amber-brown-purple/20's
Ferment Temp: 72-74°F
Bottling Yeast: Safbrew T-58

FG: 1.016
ABW: 8.8%
ABV: 11%


1. Fermented a bit on the higher side, and gave off some fairly intense alcoholic fumes.
2. 8/8/08 - Added .5 lb candy sugar (dissolved in 1 pint boiling water, and 4 lbs blueberries thawed and heated in microwave then hand crushed.
3. First round of blueberries and the fermentation picked up right away with impressive scents escaping the airlock.
4. Can't remember when I racked it, but around 2 weeks before bottling.
5. Added re-hydrated Safbrew T-58 yeast at bottling.


Kevin LaVoy said...

Are you planning on doing anything to help the candy sugar dissolve, or dumping it in? I used it in my dubbel a couple weeks ago, and it settled right to the bottom. I was surprised that even during the boil, it took a while for them to fully dissolve.

The recipe looks great. I'm starting to plan out a fruit beer myself (for Kerry of course), and I like the idea of aging it ala Frambroise so you get a chance for some of those beer flavors to shine back through the fruit.

Ted Danyluk said...


The sugar gets dissolved in a small volume of hot water, and boiled for a bit. It does take a while for the sugar to dissolve, even in boiling conditions. I don't think it would ever fully dissolve it plopped straight into the fermenter.

I'll be doing racking 5 gallons into 5 separate secondary jugs for different flavored beers. One will have raspberry and mint. The others will be quite interesting too. Look for the post next week.

Let me know if you need anything with the preparation/process of your fruit beer.