Thursday, April 2, 2009

Palisades Best Bitter

This beer kicks off another round of three batches using a select yeast strain. Each successive beer style will get stronger and/or darker. As with the previous Scottish ales, here we have some Bitters. I've chosen London ESB yeast because it gives a clean flavor, the beer's taste stands up to some aging, and it flocculates extremely well leaving a super clear beer.

I was originally going to keep it strictly British in nature, but things began to change...and for the better I think. I took into consideration some really good brews from last year (Sterling Moon, Rhino Rye, and Ordinary Bitter) and it gradually took on an American influence. After visiting with Half Acre's brewer, I found that the bittering approach would have to change a bit to highlight a more clean bitterness with a moderate hop flavor. I also went with a flavor/aroma hop variety I've never used before which should give the beer a somewhat American/UK hybrid taste. For the style, this one might be hoppier in the nose, but it's not a super aromatic variety.

The brewday went as well as could be expected. I really liked how the Palisade hops smelled at 10 minutes. The hop blend at knock-out should be good. Most of the batch will be put into 2 kegs, each with a different small dose of keg hops. 10 gallons of another session ale will be just the ticket for some upcoming events.

Palisades Best Bitter

7.0 lbs. Organic 2-Row
3.0 lbs. Belgian Pils
.70 lbs. UK Crystal 40L
.70 lbs. Crystal Rye
.75 lbs. Belgian Biscuit
.50 lbs. Belgian Aromatic
.50 lbs. Belgian Candy Sugar

1.10 oz. Kent Golding, 4.5%, pellet, 75min
2.75 oz. Palisade, 6.7%, pellet, 10min
0.25 oz. Kent Golding, 4.5%, pellet, KO
0.25 oz. Palisade, 6.7%, pellet, KO

Keg Hops
3 gallon: .25 oz. Kent Golding & .25 oz. Palisade
5 gallon: .80 oz. Palisade .40 oz. Kent Golding

Wyeast 1968: London ESB

Brew Day Stats

Brewed: 4/2/09
Kegged/Bottle: 4/9/09

Water Adjustment:
Strike: 1.25 tsp Gypsum, .75 tsp acid blend, .5 tsp Chalk
2nd Sparge: 1 tsp CaCl, .5 tsp Gypsum, .5 tsp Chalk

H2O/Grain Ratio: 1.5 qt/lb
Mash Ph: 5.4
Sacch. Rest Temp/Time: 152°F/60min
Mash Out Temp/Time: n/a
1st Batch Vol/SG: 6.25gal/1.041

2nd Batch Sparge H2OTemp/MashTemp: 180°F/171°F
2nd Batch Vol/SG: 6.25gal/1.014

Pre-Boil Vol: 12.5 gallons
Pre-Boil SG: 1.030
Boil Time: 75+min
Post-Boil Vol: 10 gallons
Mash Efficiency: 80%

OG: 1.036
IBU: 27
Color/SRM: Golden-Copper/9
Ferment Temp: 66°F with diacetyl rest

FG: 1.014
ABW: 2.31%
ABV: 2.88%


Ryan said...

I wouldnt say that 1968 gives a clean flavor, its very fruity and is exactly what youd want/expect in a bitter

1968 is my "house strain", makes awesome IPA's, and drops out super fast leaving a peanut butter sludge in the bottom of your fermentor

seeandyspin said...

i see you adjusted the water; do you do this every batch / how is chicago lake water in general? (again from a beginner here)

Ted Danyluk said...

I guess so, fruity sounds about right. My only experience was with some fairly dark ambers last year. I still thing their is a clean quality, and perhaps it is simply the clarity of the beer that skews my perception. I'm looking forward to this beer because the malts aren't so sweet or dark, and it will allow the malt/yeast "fruitiness" to come through. With all the hops in there, and maybe a touch more in the keg, for the relatively low %, this should have a lot going on.

I do adjust my water pretty much every brew. I guess my beer has always tasted better with the calcium additions (Gypsum and/or CaCl), salts (Epsom, Kosher), and some acid blend for the lighter worts.

Chicago water is pretty good, and suited for the darker ales, so some hardening is beneficial.

Adding salts to beer is much like adding salt to food, it accentuates the flavor to a degree. Play around and compare your beers with and without water treatment.