Monday, February 21, 2011

Session Series: 2011 Scottish 60/-

This was a first on a few levels. And not the beer or recipe. This beer is a staple of mine every year because it is just such an easy drinking malty beer. I still don't think I'm all that close to perfecting it, but I really like trying. It is also a great beer to use as a starter to build up some yeast because 5 gals can be pitched with 1 White Labs vial.

So the firsts are:
1) First time messing with my brewing water
2) First time using WLP028 Edinburgh Scottish Ale Yeast
3) First time trying to get some kettle carmelization
4) Full on Time Lapse Video of the brew day...enjoy (thanks Dan)

BREW KNEW from Dan Olson on Vimeo.

I know you are not supposed to change more than 1 variable at a time, but I did. And it may have bitten me a because of it. Stay tuned for the Tasting Notes.

First, brewing water, I have read several articles and listened to several podcasts on Brew Strong on the Brewing Network. But up until now I just didn't try it. I thought this beer was a great candidate because I can never get this beer quite as malty as I want. I think part of this is due to the hard and high sulfate water in San Diego that lends itself much better to hoppy, bitter beers. I looked through several online calculators and spreadsheets. I really liked the simplicity and completeness of the EZ Water Calculator. I used the latest water report for San Diego (2009) I could get. It is very simple to read off the chart and enter the water profile. I used the average numbers from Alvarado since that is the plant that supplies Downtown San Diego. Looking at the chart shown below I figured out that I could dilute with some distilled water and add some salt (non-iodized) to get the right Chloride to Sulfate ratio and still remain in the acceptable ranges.

In the past, I have used California Ale yeast for my Scottish Ales as Jamil suggests. But I was really curious how the beer could be with the traditional yeast. And looking through the stats and reviews on the White Lab site it seemed very similar to WLP001 but with a few more esters which I would prefer in this style.

Also I setup my recipe to be a bit lighter than previous versions because I wanted to see if I could do a bit of kettle carmelization. I was hopping it would add some depth to the carmel notes but I didn't want to get any butterscotch notes I have read about from over doing this method.

Recipe: Scottish Ale 60/-
O.G.-1.035  F.G.-TBD   IBU-13  
SRM-11   ABV-3.3   Cal-116

Grain Bill (77% Efficiency):
5 lb Maris Otter (78%)
8 oz Crystal 40L (8%)
8 oz Honey Malt (8%) 
4 oz Crystal 120L (4%) 
2 oz Brown Malt (2%)

.5 oz East Kent Goldings, 5%, pellet, 90 min 13 IBU

1 vial of White Labs WLP028

Brew Day:
Brewed: 01/29/11
Kegged: 02/13/11

San Diego (Alvarado) Tap Water
1 campden tablet for 5 gal.

Mash Details:
H2O/Grain Ratio: 1.85 qt/lb
Mash Volume: 3 gal
Sacc Rest. Temp/Time: 158F @ 60min
Strike Temp: 168F
Sparge Volume: 5.5 gal
Sparge Temp/Time: 168F

Boil Details:
Boil Volume: 7 gal

Boil Time: 90min (I did boil 1 gal of first runnings to .5 gal)
Post Boil Volume: 5.25 gal

Ferment Details:
O.G.: 1.035
Ferment Temp: 66-68F
Length: 10 days

Tasting Notes

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