Tag Archives: bravo

Quadro-Smash! (WTF Al?)

Edited to reflect reality!  And again to reflect reality again!

 

UPDATE: fucked it all up.  Forgot which bucket was which, put the dry hops 68g for this one into the Sam Adams summer ale clone.  This one was quite a bit on the bitter side, but has mellowed as it aged, and is at least drinkable. 

Now the other beer, the Sam Adams Summer Ale clone, it came out really nice!  All that dry hop aroma somehow didn’t mess with the rather delicate and subtle aromas and flavors of the lemon peel and grains of paradise.

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Well I never cared whether I mis-used words or butchered the English Language much, so I can name my beers whatever the heck I want!

Got the idea from a beeradvocate.com thread. Four base malts, equal portions, and four hops, equal portions, in a pale ale or IPA like beer with IBUs about 45-50.

3 lbs maris otter
3 lbs golden promise
3 lbs vienna
3 lbs munich

Hops will be a blend of Cascade, Citra, Willamette, and Bravo!  I gotta check the AA% for the exact numbers,, but the schedule wound up like this:

  • 40g bravo
    100g cascade
    80g willamette
    60g citra
    280g hops total
    28g at 60
    54g at 5
    140g at FO
    68g dry hop

Used Denny’s best yeast.  Wound up being far more of an IPA than I had previously planned.  Still – This one can’t help but be ginormously fantabulous!

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A new and different IPA, plus some unsolicited beer philosophy

Well this one will be sorta smash-like, in that I’m not using any specialty malts, just base malts.  It’s going to have 6 lbs pilsner malt, 6 lbs golden promise, and 2 lbs Munich malt, 14 lbs total.  That’s a little bit bigger than I usually make my beers, but hey, I’m experimenting, so I can do what I want!

Here’s what I planned to do with the hops:

0.5 oz magnum at 60
0.25 oz each magnum, bravo at 15
0.5 oz tettnanger at 15
0.25 oz each magnum, bravo at 10
0.5 oz tettnanger at 10
0.25 oz each magnum, bravo at 5
0.5 oz tettnanger at 5
0.5 oz each magnum, bravo at FO
2 oz tettnanger at FO

Here’s my thinking: I’ve seen some cases where other people have experimented with magnum hops NOT solely at the 60 minute mark, but as late additions, flameout additions, or even dry hopping..  None have had anything bad to say about their beers, so I figure I’ll step outside the box a little and try some magnum late in the boil.  Now I’m also going with a little bravo, which I already know works fine at any stage of the boil.  If you recall that far back, my Munich / Bravo SMaSH had half an ounce bravo early, 1 oz at 5 minutes, and two ounces at flameout, and that’s one of my favorite SMaSH beers I’ve ever made.  Purely delicious.  So to me, that’s a tried and true hop.  It should offer support to the magnum, which is a little unknown, but I have no worries.  Then I’m tossing in tettnanger, in approximately double-ish the amounts of the two higher AA hops.  I really don’t know what I’m going to get out of this, but I bet it will be tasty!  Well of course I think it will be tasty, or I wouldn’t bother making it!

Oh, and probably US-05 yeast.

In the near future I’m going to be brewing with some Irish Ale yeast, and some 3711.  I think the 3711 will go with the next weird extract experimental two gallon batch I’m planning.  Can’t wait to see how EXTRA DARK extract goes with 3711!  Hey, the last one worked out great, so who knows!

Now also in the spirit of trying new things, if this one comes out really good, I may have to try a smash beer with all magnum.  I know one guy who’s tried just such a beast, and it came out tasty beer.  Who says you can’t use magnum late?  Sure, it’s a great bittering hop, and I have no plans to take anything away from it in that respect.  But is it being unfairly relegated to the background, when it deserves some time center stage?

Well let me just say this – if it’s generic, commonly spewed forth advice that seems regurgitated and taken for granted “just because,” then I’m willing to challenge that notion.  I’m already challenging the standard advice with extracts, and now maybe even a little bit with magnum, and maybe a lot more with magnum soon.  I encourage everyone to do the same, challenge the norms, try stuff that maybe doesn’t seem like the obvious thing to do.

And when it comes to giving out advice… Yeah, you can always say “sanitation is important,” and you’ll never be wrong.  But if you say “don’t use amber extract, use light, then add specialty grains bla bla bla…”  Have you actually TRIED amber or dark extract?  Is this advice universal and unchanging, etched in stone from cradle to grave?

I say no.  There are times when amber or dark extract will be perfect for the beer you intend to make.  If that’s the case, just use them!  Taint no big deal!!  Now other times, it may be better to use light extract, and adjust the finer points of your beer with specialty grains.  There’s no doubt that there are many times when this advice is also the best advice, so again, I’m not trying to take away from this approach.  But there should be a reason why the light extract+steeping grains is superior in the particular instance at hand.  Conversely, if amber (or even dark) extract is appropriate for the beer at hand, at least try it once.

I recently had an email exchange with a representative from Munton’s about their extracts.  While he didn’t hand over the manufacturer’s specifications to me, he did indicate that the notion that extracts are “chock full of crystal malt” was simply not the case.  If they were, then extracts would not have the versatility that they do.  instead, they would consistently produce cloying, overly sweet, overly thick beer (just like if you put too much crystal malt in a beer!  Imagine that!).  And of course he believes that the quality of extracts (particularly Munton’s, lol) is very high, and the quality of beer you can make from extracts is also very high, including for the amber and dark or extra dark varieties.  I tend to agree, at least so far.  I know I’m brewing all grain now, but my extract brews  were very tasty too.  That’s part of why I keep experimenting with small extract batches.

So anyway, I’ve digressed into pointless rambling.  I tend to do that sometimes.  Make of it what you will, or just grab a beer and go watch reruns of your favorite TV show (as a means of ignoring my ramblings)*.

Anyway, I need a beer.  Cheers!

*wouldn’t be the first time that happened, lol

EDIT: Brewed 11-23-13

Changes to the Double-Smash Beer

Well I finally got around to actually brewing the Double-SMaSH, with Vienna/Munich, BUT – I forgot the cascade hops on brew day.  Since I have to drive a ways to get to where I brew, I wasn’t going back.  However, I had some hops there, so I just changed the hops schedule around completely.  So now it’s a double-TRIPLE-SMaSH.  Yes, I realize that’s one hell of a misnomer.  But hey, it’s my beer, and I can change it up if I want to!  Plus I was never that good at keeping to the strict interpretation of literary meanings or definitions of words.   I do what I want!!

Still 6 lbs each Vienna / Munich malts.

Here’s the new hops schedule:

0.25 each at 60 bravo/belma
0.25 each at 15 bravo/belma/centennial
0.25 each at 10 bravo/belma
0.5 centennial at 10
0.25 each at 5 bravo/belma
0.75 centennial at 5
1 oz each belma/bravo at FO
DH one ounce each belma/bravo

From past experience, it’ll at least make beer, and probably tasty beer.  Maybe it’ll be the new sensation, who knows?  But as long as it makes tasty beer, I’ll be happy.

Cloning Pliny The Elder – My First Double IPA

Well I’m going to attempt a Pliny the Elder clone this weekend.   Consistently rated as one of the best beers on the planet, Pliny deserves its reputation.  With ratings of 100 on BA and 100/100 on ratebeer.com, it seems the rest of the craft beer geek world agrees.  If you’ve ever had Pliny, you’ll probably agree too.  I don’t think I’ll quite do it justice, but it’s a great place to start for my first attempt at brewing a Double IPA.

Yeast is California Ale Yeast.

Fermentables:

  • 13.25 lbs 2-row
  • 8 oz carafoam
  • 8 oz caramel-40
  • 10 oz corn sugar

Hops:

  • 1.5 oz millenium FWH
  • 1.5 oz cascade FWH
  • 2 oz cascade FO
  • 1 oz belma FO
  • 1 oz bravo FO
  • 1 oz millenium FO

quickly cool to 170F and let stand 30 minutes

Dry Hops

  • 2 oz millenium 14 days
  • 1 oz cluster 14 days
  • 1 oz belma 14 days
  • 2 oz bravo 5 days
  • 2 oz cascade 5 days

Targets:

  • OG: 1.075
  • FG: 1.011
  • SRM: 7
  • IBU: 108

Total fermentation time should be 3 weeks from boil to bottle, plus conditioning time.  I’ve gotten advice to bottle and enjoy as quickly as possible to preserve delicate hop aromas and flavors.  Makes sense to me.

This will be a unique beer for me because it’s only got first wort hops and flameout hops, and a lot of them at that.   Thanks to Barfdiggs on beer advocate for the hops schedule!

Bravo/Munich SMaSH

This one is up next!  I’m brewing another smash, meant to showcase the bravo hop and Munich malt.

  • 12 lbs Munich malt
  • o.5 oz bravo at 60
  • 2 oz bravo at 5
  • 2 oz bravo at 0
  • 2 oz bravo dry hop
  • US-05 yeast

Targets:

  • OG 1.064
  • IBU 45.9
  • SRM 12.3
  • ABV 6.2%

Tasting notes: Came out GREAT!  Very hoppy, I didn’t get the “fruitiness” that a lot of people claim from bravo, but it was still quite hoppy.  I got more of a spicy flavor with fruit notes.  Definitely worth brewing again.  I think a little 2-row along with the Munich would be optimal tho, perhaps up to 50% 2-row.

SMaSH weekend!

Well I’m ready to brew again, two batches in fact.  Both Blonde Ale III and Elderberry Wheat II have fermented long enough (by the time this big brew day goes down) and we’re ready to bottle them.

I’ve also been wanting to try some more SMaSH beers.  Why?  Because SMaSH beers are simple, and they help develop your processes.  Also, I’ve been liking these simple pale ales a lot, tending towards slightly on the hoppy side.  So we’re going to brew two SMaSH beers in one big brew day!

The first SMaSH beer will be a Munich malt and Bravo hops special.

  • 12 lbs Munich
  • 14 grams Bravo at 60
  • 2 oz Bravo at 5 minutes
  • 2 oz Bravo at flameout
  • 2 oz Bravo dry hop

Targets:

  • OG 1.064
  • IBU 45
  • SRM 12.3
  • ABV 6.6

The second SMaSH beer will be a pilsner malt and fuggles hops with saison yeast smash, with 3711 yeast.  Thanks to scurvy311 on beer advocate for the idea!

  • 12 lbs pilsner malt
  • 1 oz fuggles at 60
  • 1 oz fuggles at 15
  • 1 oz fuggles at 5
  • 1 oz fuggles at 0
  • 2 oz fuggles dry hop

Targets:

  • OG 1.062
  • IBU 27.8
  • SRM 2.7
  • ABV 6.9

It’s really going to be a big day!  We’ve got multiple brews going, a couple beershed projects working, and I gotta fix my brakes too!  We have an entire “crew” to get things done, and plenty of homebrew to boot!  I’ll be “orchestrating” the brewing side of it, my bro the “building” side of it, and the scallywags will be fixin’ my brakes if they want any beer!

Should be a smashing day!

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