Brewed this West Coast Pale Ale up on February 28. I’ve read and heard that West Coast Pales are supposed to dry and hoppy. That is what I’m going for whatever the reality may be. I’m not sure if Northern Brewer fits the American bill, but that is what I had on hand for bittering.
- 12# two row
- 0.5 oz Northern Brewer
- 1# LDME
- 4 gallon freezer bags full of home grown Cascade and Nugget hops
I had 7 gallons in the tun which maxed out. Got about 5 gallons in the kettle. My initial pre-boil gravity reading was 1.040 at 127 degrees. Put 1.5 gallon in tun for “sparge”. Got about the same amount back. Added 4 gallon freezer bags full of cones. Got 5 gallons in the fermontor. OG = 1.056. Pitched Omega West Coast ale yeast. House smells piney.
Update (3/14): I check the gravity and have a reading of 1.002. I added 1 oz of Cascade pellets for dry hopping. At the moment, not thrilled about the taste. Got some esters. May have fermented at over 68 degrees.
Update (3/20): Bottled 40 bottles (2 bombers). Still had estery characteristics but was also very bitter.
For double-brew weekend day 2 I’m going to brew up my Wicked Winter Ale, but I’ll be using my base red ale grain bill. This is an homage to Pete’s Wicked Winter which has long been out of production. I ended up getting 32 quarts in the mash tun. On the third vorlauf, I got a gravity reading with the hydrometer of 1.038 at 120 deg F and 1.054 with the refractometer.
- 5/8 oz Fuggles (5.3% AA) at 60 min
- 3/8 oz East Kent Goldings (5.7% AA) at 60 min
- 5/8 oz East Kent Goldings (5.7% AA) at 0 min
- 2 tsp cinnamon at 0 min
- 2 tsp nutmeg at 0 min
While the wort was cooling I also racked my Hoppy Amber to a glass carboy so I could dry hop it with an ounce of Citra. And man, did it smell awesome! The hydrometer reading on it was 1.008, but the refractometer read in the 1.020’s. I also noticed that the yeast had clumped together kind of like yesterday, but it wasn’t floating. Maybe this is a characteristic of Omega Labs yeasts.
Back to the winter ale: I racked it on to the yeast cake of the Hoppy Amber. The OG was 1.054 according to both instruments. I will secondary this with some raspberry puree in two weeks. See you then.
After a busy weekend and Monday, I prepped my equipment for dry-hopping. Usually I would use the 5 gallon glass carboy, but since I’m using actual hop cones I will use another 6 gallon fermentor. I jammed 2-3 one gallon freezer bags full of Cascade/Nugget hop cones into a nylon bag which I closed up the end with a zip tie. I checked the gravity and got FG = 1.018.
Unfortunately, there was no sufficient light to use the refractometer. I dropped the hop bag into the 6-gallon fermentor and racked the beer on top. However, despite tying a medium sized spoon to the middle of the bag, the collection of hops began to float. After finishing off, I left the fermentor in the middle room on the first floor. The basement is a bit cool, and I’d like a little more fermentation.
Went to Bev Art today to have a keg checked. Got a new gasket for the top. Took it home and made the replacement. Nice and easy. Gassed it up to 30 psi. No leaks so, I decided to keg the Celebration Ale clone. The FG was 1.008. Sanitized the keg and a nylon bag. Jammed a gallon freezer bag full of backyard Cascade hop cones in the keg and filled it up. Unfortunately I did not weigh the bag down well enough, but the sample tasted really good. Hopefully I can carb it by Saturday.
Decided to keg the Harvest Ale I brewed a couple of weeks ago. I’m running low on bottles and I’d like to have this ready by the 22nd. Cleaned and sanitized everything, and stuffed a gallon freezer bag worth of cascade/nugget hop cones in the corny. I popped the bucket open and could definitely smell the hops and alcohol. I took a gravity reading and the FG was 1.010. Afterwards, I tasted the end of the FG sample and it was very spicy. The color was on the golden side. Next time I do this recipe I’ll have to 60L caramel malt and maybe more chocolate malt to up the redness. I racked the beer and stuck the keg in the refrigerator. When I was cleaning the bucket, I notices a black ring at the top of the krausen. Fungus? I hope not.
Dry hopped the club’s English IPA. Put the hop pellets directly in the glass carboy and racked on top. Did this in the basement to reduce sediment disturbance. Stopper is giving me a difficult time. Bottled the citrusy lager. Used 1 cup DME in 2 cups of boiled water. Also done in the basement. Both FGs were about 1.008.