Bayou Beer

All about beer brewing and drinking in South Louisiana.

Trashcan Doppelbock

April 13th, 2014

So I bought too much pilsner malt and got a little derailed by moving and house building plans and all that. Time to use all this damn pilsner, spare munich and why the hell did I buy 2 pounds of caramunich when I didn’t need it? Oh and where’d this 2 lbs of vienna come from? What I still have 4 ounces of Hallertauer hanging around? What can I do with all this…..doppelbock should work.

Eh…I still can’t get behind building a mash in beersmith.   I need to be in the 153-155 range so I’m hitting it with 40 quarts at 170F.  Should lose about 4 gallons to absorption so about 15 gallons needed.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
11 gal 90 min 25.2 IBUs 20.5 SRM 1.076 SG 1.017 SG 7.7 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
Doppelbock 5 C 1.072 - 1.112 1.016 - 1.024 16 - 26 6 - 25 2.3 - 2.6 7 - 10 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pilsner (2 Row) Ger 21 lbs 61.76
Munich Malt - 20L 5 lbs 14.71
Caramunich Malt 3 lbs 8.82
Vienna Malt 2 lbs 5.88
Aromatic Malt 1 lbs 2.94
Cara-Pils/Dextrine 1 lbs 2.94
Special B Malt 1 lbs 2.94
Light Dry Extract 0 lbs 0

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Hallertauer Mittelfrueh 4 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 4.5

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Lactic Acid 15.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent
Lactic Acid 15.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent
Calcium Chloride 8.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Epsom Salt (MgSO4) 4.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent

 

Tropical Ale for Zapp’s Beerfest

March 17th, 2014

The original brewdate for this beer was Friday the 28th.   The beer hit it’s gravity and worked out very well.   Dry hopped and transferred the 10 gallons in to kegs for carbonation.  I’ll re-transfer them to prevent the cloudiness problems I’ve had in the past bringing beers to festivals and stirring up the yeast. The dry hopping also includes adding mango and pineapple to make the beer super tropical. This is the same beer we made for Iron Brewer.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
5.5 gal 60 min 63.1 IBUs 5.4 SRM 1.057 SG 1.011 SG 6.0 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
American Pale Ale 10 A 1.045 - 1.06 1.01 - 1.015 30 - 45 5 - 14 2.3 - 2.8 4.5 - 6.2 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pale Malt (2 Row) US 10 lbs 86.96
Munich Malt - 10L 0.5 lbs 4.35
Victory Malt 0.5 lbs 4.35
Vienna Malt 0.5 lbs 4.35

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Columbus (Tomahawk) 1 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 14
Centennial 1 oz 10 min Boil Pellet 10
Citra 1 oz 5 min Boil Pellet 12
Simcoe 1 oz 0 min Boil Pellet 13
Citra 1 oz 0 min Dry Hop Pellet 12

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Calcium Chloride 5.50 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Epsom Salt (MgSO4) 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
California Ale (WLP001) White Labs 77% 68°F - 73°F

2014 Louisiana Homebrew Club Competition

March 9th, 2014

Yesterday Redstick Brewmasters hosted the Louisiana Homebrew Club Competition. As my Benedict Arnold Milk Stout won first place in stouts and went on to win Best of Show I obviously had a wonderful time. Redstick did a fantastic job lining up Mockler Beverage to host the competition, lining up sponsors, running the competition judging and hosting the judges. Lots of great beer, food and company to spend a Saturday.

The prizes for first place in stouts included a medal, $20 gift card to LA Homebrew, gift card and T-Shirt from the Cove and the wonderful New Belgium Ranger sign below.   Best of Show prizes were insane as Blichmann sent quick connects and a therminator, LA Homebrew donated $120 worth of gift gards, $50 donated from the Pelican House, $30 from the Cove and an awesome custom carved tap handle trophy.  Honestly I’ve never won so much stuff in my life.   This was an insanely wonderful surprise.

Louisiana Club HomeBrew Competition Prizes

A closer look at the awesome tap handle trophy:

LouisianaHomebrewClubCompetitionBestOfShowTrophy

North German Altbier

January 22nd, 2014

Recently I had the opportunity to judge alts at Roberts Cover Germanfest. As I’d never had a German alt other than Uerige Sticke I had no idea what to expect but was surprised at how much I enjoyed the beers submitted. So I’ve made it a point to brew my own German altbiers this year starting with 10 gallons of Jamil’s North German Altbier with a minor change of using only half of the roasted malts he used. The reason for this change is the beers I judged seem very dark compared to the description of the style. Most of the alt recipes I’ve seen out there are adaptations of Jamil’s North German Alt or Dusseldorf Alt recipe and I suspect these are where many of the beers I judged came from.

Brew Day Was January 20, 2014

A fairly hectic brew day. Had some pump issues with recirculation and something happened with the screen at the bottom of the mash tun as I couldn’t get it to run clear. I ended up transferring the wort/grain to buckets, resetting the tun, transferring it back, recirculating and getting it straight. Post boil and in to the fermenters everything was right on gravity and tasted/looked really good so no worries. As I suspected the beer is much lighter in color and more akin to the style description.

January 22, 2014

Really strong 2 days of fermentation at 60F and it’s still going. Should be a good beer. It’d better be for 10 gallons.

January 26, 2014

After the great ice storm of 2014 here in Baton Rouge I was a little worried this beer wouldn’t finish out enough. It’s currently at 1.0115 even though with the cold weather my outside storage got it down as low as 50F. The top 1/4 of the fermenter is brightening so I’ll let it sit for another week to polish up before crashing to lager on the yeast for a week. Overall it’s a very bready, very strongly bittered beer with distinct German flavors. Definitely some bready tastes bordering on toasty in there and a full body especially for a 1.048 beer. I think I’m going to really enjoy this one when it’s finished.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
11 gal 90 min 36.8 IBUs 11.9 SRM 1.048 SG 1.010 SG 5.0 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
Northern German Altbier 7 A 1.046 - 1.054 1.01 - 1.015 25 - 40 13 - 19 2.4 - 2.8 4.5 - 5.2 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pilsner (2 Row) Ger 18 lbs 85.71
Munich Malt - 10L 2 lbs 9.52
Caramunich Malt 0.5 lbs 2.38
Carafa II 0.25 lbs 1.19
Pale Chocolate Malt 0.25 lbs 1.19

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Magnum 1.5 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 14

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
German Ale (1007) Wyeast Labs 75% 55°F - 66°F

American Amber

December 24th, 2013

Brewed this beer originally on 12/24/2013.   The gravity was extremely high at 1.05 and with reason.   Instead of the typical batch sparge where I empty the initial mash, refill with 3-5 gallons of water and empty again I split the second batch in to a third.   So it was like this:

  • Initial 16 quarts in.
  • Drained as fast as possible.
  • Add 8 quarts, stir, wait 10 minutes.
  • Drain as fast as possible.
  • Add 8 quarts, stir, wait 10 minutes.
  • Drain as fast as possible.

A decent post about this subject is here at Homebrewtalk.com.

Pitched a 500ml active starter and fermentation went well.

Update on 12/24/2013

Fermentation went well and the beer will be going in to a keg after Christmas.

 

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
5.5 gal 60 min 24.1 IBUs 11.5 SRM 1.046 SG 1.011 SG 4.5 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
American Amber Ale 6 B 1.045 - 1.056 1.01 - 1.015 20 - 40 11 - 18 2.3 - 2.8 4.5 - 5.7 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pale Malt (2 Row) US 9.25 lbs 86.05
Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L 0.75 lbs 6.98
Caramel/Crystal Malt - 80L 0.5 lbs 4.65
Caramel/Crystal Malt -120L 0.25 lbs 2.33

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Magnum 0.5 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 14
Goldings, B.C. 0.5 oz 0 min Boil Pellet 5
Simcoe 0.5 oz 0 min Boil Pellet 13

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Lactic Acid 15.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent
Calcium Chloride 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Epsom Salt (MgSO4) 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Whirlfloc Tablet 1.10 Items 15 min Boil Fining

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
California Ale V (WLP051) White Labs 73% 66°F - 70°F

IPA and Their Prime, Enjoy By and in General When to Drink

December 13th, 2013

As rare as it is for American craft beer drinkers I’m not huge on the IPA. I’m more of a lager guy who loves clean malt character, subtle yeast tones and of course some hop bitterness. IPA however is all about hop character. It’s total hop character not just bitterness. People what hop aroma, flavor and bitterness all in circus with enough malt to balance you through multiple liters. It’s truly assertive madness brought in to temporary balance.

As a brewer I work to brew beers to please not only my own thirst but that of my friends. IPA and American pale ale have been my latest test as it may be. This goal brought on by initial failures a year or so ago. The beer was always too harsh or too malty with inappropriate balance. Several things were tried. Water profiles, late hop additions, popular hops, lower Alpha hops, different grain bills, percentages and brewing techniques. HOWEVER one thing I noticed is regardless of these combinations the number one thing was without doubt simply tasting the beer and waiting for it’s ideal drinking time.

This seems obvious.

But it isn’t. Through my learning many stressed that IPA and pale ale need to be enjoyed young. Most podcast I listened too reveled in enjoying fresh out the brewery beer at whatever West Coast brewery they were enjoying. This I know led myself and other home brewers to believe that such beers were always best right out the gate a week after dry hopping and carbonation.

This isn’t always true.

Some people may very much enjoy beer with offensively perfumed hop character that you get from American hops a week after dry hopping but in my experience it’s the majority that enjoy it more in balance. Perhaps it’s a west coast thing but for me in competitions my beers have done well with 2-3 months to clear and balance out. Mind you most of my recipes derive from Jamil Zainasheff’s line of though so that should give you a baseline.

Finding a Balance.

This is probably obvious to professionals but probably not so much to literal home brewers. You have to understand when your beers will come in to balance relative to the recipe you use. The blanket statement about drinking pales and IPA young is a  fallacy. You must taste and time your brews to understand when they age to the appropriate balance. For me(and apparently judges in Louisiana and Texas) this is 2-4 months from the carbonation date on the beer when brewed in the style of Jamil. Even more important than putting a time to it is learning to understand when a beer is becoming fine.

I suppose timing is everything even in brewing.

Sweet Stout – AKA Benedict Arnold Stout

November 27th, 2013

Or Milk Stout if you please. This beers brew day was actually November 15th and I just realized when logging in to note it’s final gravity that I forgot to even add the entry. This beer was the final beer in my dutch oven style brewing marathon of Safale-05. I brewed an IPA, Imperial Stout and finally this sweet stout. I’d heard from podcast before that 05 had a distinct subtle peach/pineapple/tropical/biting type character and that’s definitely evident. It’s interesting and good if you like that character. I do like the yeast and enjoy the beers. I think the best part about it is it just works as expected every time. Also it needs to be noted that I ended up using US Goldings instead of East Kent Goldings.

The most interesting part of this experiment was tossing the sweet stout on top of the cake after the larger Imperial stout. The theory was added complexity by some blending.

The sweet stout although it was targeted OG of 1.057 ended up closer to 1.065 as my unpredictable efficiency woes continue. The final gravity was about 1.012 as desired. The mouthfeel is right and the lactose is definitely there. With some age this should be very interesting. I need to re-note this post after I try it carbonated.

Dutch oven brewing as I am calling it is pitching on top of the same yeast in the same fermenter. Essentially I take one beer out and 15 minutes later pump the second in. As with cast iron cooking the seasoning adds a little something special to the beers. After the primary fermentation I quickly remove the beer to minimize any chance of harsh off flavors. Obviously this won’t work for all flavors but I think with things like Stouts and Barley wine I can produce some nice complexity.

Update 12/7/2013

This’ll be called Benedict Arnold Stout because it’s a British beer made with US ingredients. I found it funny at least. :P

Update 3/10/2014

This beer ended up winning Best of Show in the Louisiana Club Homebrew Competition.   I came back to read my notes before sharing the recipe with people and realized I forgot to add the water treatment I use.   Essentially I treat 10 gallons of Baton Rouge tap water with  the same treatment I used for the Russian Imperial Stout.

Interesting enough this beer didn’t place at the Bataille des Bieres yet it did get low 40′s marks.   The marks from that competition were that it was slightly too bitter which I agreed with at the time.   As with most stouts a little time fixed that problem in about a month.   I really look forward to getting my scoresheets from the LCHC.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
6 gal 60 min 29.0 IBUs 33.8 SRM 1.057 SG 1.012 SG 5.9 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
Sweet Stout 13 B 1.044 - 1.06 1.012 - 1.024 20 - 40 30 - 40 2 - 2.4 4 - 6 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pale Malt, Maris Otter 11 lbs 73.33
Black (Patent) Malt 1 lbs 6.67
Cara-Pils/Dextrine 1 lbs 6.67
Caramel/Crystal Malt - 80L 1 lbs 6.67
Milk Sugar (Lactose) 1 lbs 6.67

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Goldings, East Kent 2 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 5

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
Safale American (US-05) DCL/Fermentis 77% 59°F - 75°F

Notes

Pitching this on top of the Russian Imperial Stout cake that was pitched on top of the Tomahawk American Pale Cake.

LA Homebrew – New Homebrewing Supplies Store in Baton Rouge

November 9th, 2013

Oh happy days to be a homebrewer in Baton Rouge Louisiana.   In just 3 short years we’ve gone from one homebrewing club to 3 with memberships booming on all clubs.   And now Keith Primeaux of Redstick Brewmasters has opened a dedicated full scale homebrew supplies business in South East Baton Rouge.   Keith is one of the most knowledgeable and active brewers in our area so it’s very exciting as he’ll have all the supplies you need and tons of great advice if you need it.   He’s already put up a coming soon website page that he’ll be converting in to an online ordering system.  You can see that at LAHomebrew.com.     He also has a Facebook page.

I’ve been over to his shop twice to get supplies and am very impressed with the selection.  Every grain you could want, liquid yeasts both Wyeast and White labs, chillers, homebrew kits, spices and everything you really need.

Get your Homebrewing Supplies in Baton Rouge at LA Homebrew.

7987 Pecue Lane 8-H
Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70809

(225)773-9128

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Russian Imperial Stout

November 7th, 2013

I’ll be pitching this on top of the Safale-05 beer from two weeks ago since this big ole beer will need one heck of a starter.  The original recipe called for a big hit of WLP001 so this should do just fine.

Update 11/8/2013 

Brew day went not so smooth.  Using Beersmith for the first time in brewing was a little confusing and took some getting used to.   Had a boil over, had pump issues, had some strange issue with hitting mash temperature and the thing was all over the place at first.   So a perfect storm for a great impossible to reproduce beer.  The original gravity was. 1.110 although I had to add 2 pounds of DME due to continued efficiency issues.   The wort tasted amazing though so this thing should be pretty fantastic.   Pitched it on that yeast cake and it was fermenting hard n heavy in less than 4 hours.

 Update 11/9/2013

airlock on bottom of the chest freezer, wild out of control fermentation.   Looks good!  Blow off tube rigged and a mess to clean up when it’s done.

Update 11/20/2013

This beer finished just fine at 1.025ish and a very healthy 11-12% ABV.  All the flavors are certainly present and it’s a fine beer carbonated.   Given a few months the complexity will certainly develop as it refines but I think this beer would win medals today.  Very happy given this is one of the more expensive beers I’ve  brewed.

Update 3/10/2014

After getting score sheets and results back from a couple of competitions this beer was deemed to be slightly lacking in body.  The scores were high 30′s and a 40 which while ver good aren’t winners.   I believe  a nice dose of flaked barley would put this beer right on the money.   I apparently lapsed in my judgement on carbonation.  I shot for lower intentionally but the judges didn’t like it.   Perhaps this was a result of the need for more dextrin or flaked barley?(thanks for the suggestion Toby)

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
5.5 gal 60 min 59.3 IBUs 53.5 SRM 1.107 SG 1.026 SG 10.7 %

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
Imperial Stout 13 F 1.075 - 1.115 1.018 - 1.03 50 - 90 30 - 40 1.8 - 2.6 8 - 12 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pale Malt (2 Row) UK 20 lbs 76.92
Roasted Barley 1 lbs 3.85
Special B Malt 1 lbs 3.85
Black (Patent) Malt 0.5 lbs 1.92
Caramunich Malt 0.5 lbs 1.92
Chocolate Malt 0.5 lbs 1.92
Pale Chocolate Malt 0.5 lbs 1.92
Light Dry Extract 2 lbs 7.69

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Magnum 2 oz 60 min Boil Pellet 14
Goldings, East Kent 2 oz 1 min Aroma Pellet 5
Goldings, East Kent 2 oz 10 min Aroma Pellet 5

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Lactic Acid 15.00 ml 60 min Mash Water Agent
Calcium Chloride 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Epsom Salt (MgSO4) 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) 5.00 g 60 min Mash Water Agent

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
Safale American (US-05) DCL/Fermentis 77% 59°F - 75°F

Notes

Pitched on top of an American Ale yeast cake.

 

American APA – With Wheat, Melanoidin

October 26th, 2013

So I’m working on brewing an American Pale I really enjoy.   I brewed a somewhat similar IPA which I enjoyed and did ok at Dixie Cup but I want something more malty yet similar.   So I’m giving this guy a shot and see how it does.   It should at least have a nice red color.  As a note I’ll be putting in 100ml of phosphoric acid not 90ml.  6.75 tablespoons

Trying something different by using Brewers Friend to calculate the water.  We’ll see how it goes!

Update 11/20/2013

After about a month this beer tastes very nice.   The Columbus hops are certainly interesting and assertive.   Very ruddy and spicy as is expected from American hops.   The Cascade does what Cascade does and the Simcoe is certainly there.   This beer is extremely easy drinking that’s for sure with a nice malt profile hanging in the background.   In early December it should be clear and ready to bottle.

Recipe Details

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
6 gal 60 min 13 1.05 1.014 5

Style Details

Name Cat. OG Range FG Range IBU SRM Carb ABV
American Pale Ale 10 10A 1.045 - 1.06 1.01 - 1.015 30 - 45 5 - 14 0 - 0 4.5 - 6.2 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Pale Malt (2 Row) US 10 lbs 80
Wheat Malt, Ger 1 lbs 8
Caramel/Crystal Malt - 20L 0.75 lbs 6
Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L 0.5 lbs 4
Melanoiden Malt 0.25 lbs 2

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Columbus (Tomahawk) 1 oz 30 min Boil Pellet 14
Simcoe 1 oz 5 min Boil Pellet 13.5
Cascade 1 oz 1 min Boil Pellet 5.5
Columbus (Tomahawk) 1 oz 0 min Dry Hop Pellet 14

Miscs

Name Amount Time Use Type
Lactic Acid 60 min Mash Water Agent
Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) 60 min Mash Water Agent
Calcium Chloride 60 min Mash Water Agent
Epsom Salt (MgSO4) 60 min Mash Water Agent

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
SafAle American Ale (US-05) DCL Yeast 75% 59°F - 75°F

Notes

acid used was phosphoric acid. 18 teaspoons or 90 ml or 6 tablespoons to be easier.
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