Sunday, February 27, 2011

Dundalk Irish Heavy

I brewed my first all grain batch of beer today, with the help of a cast of several. We started things up around 12:30 by heating the strike water to 161 and mashing in at 150 degrees. Things went well in that regard from all appearances. While we tended to the mash indoors, Gabe and others brewed a batch of Scottish 80 Shilling in the garage. Timed it really well, as by the time we were moving Gabe’s beer to the primary fermenter the Irish Heavy was going through its sparge and was ready for the burner.

The color was extremely dark, much darker than I expected. More of an Old Ale or almost a barley wine coloration. The description for this recipe says it was often referred to as a barley wine, but the gravity seemed light to me. The pre-boil was only 1.040, however the post boil skyrocketed to 1.072, thanks to evaporation and the addition of a pound of pure sugar at the end of the boil. I collected approximately 4.5 gallons of wort, so when I pitched the yeast I topped it up to around 5.5 gallons, by adding an additional gallon of purified water. I felt I was safe to do this with the O.G. being significantly higher than planned. I probably should have taken another hydrometer reading after topping up, but I didn’t.

Finally pitched the yeast around 7:00 after waiting for the temp to rise up enough. The temp was reading around 60 degrees at pitching time, which is a little cool for this one, but I have a heating pat strapped to the fermenter so that should come up a few degrees. I was getting super hungry and tired at this point, as I’d been brewing for most of the day and hadn’t eaten since mid-morning. The low temp was a combination of the 25 degree temps today and an overly aggressive wort chiller. I found a used homemade wort chiller on craigslist, but it seems a little too efficient. We chilled Gabe’s batch down into the mid 40s, and mine went down into the low 50s. The only reason mine did not go lower was that we only opened the tap on the hose an eighth of a turn. Might be good for summer brewing, or lagers, but was a little much this time of year for an ale.

In two weeks I’ll bottle and the in a few more weeks we’ll see how the final gravity looks, along with the taste. Should be interesting.

Recipe Specifics
Batch Size (Gal): 5.00
Total Grain (Lbs): 11
Anticipated OG: 1.062
Anticipated SRM: 16.3
Anticipated IBU: 52
Brewhouse Efficiency: xx %
Wort Boil Time: 60 Minutes

75.0% - 9.25 lbs. Maris Otter
25.0% - 0.50 lbs. CaraPils
xx.x% - 0.25 lbs. Roasted Barley

Water Profile
Profile: Eagan, MN, diluted by ¼ with purified bottled water

Mash Schedule
Sacch 60 min @ 150


Wyeast British Cask Ale 1026

Brewed 2/27/11
Pre-boil gravity 1.040
O.G. 1.072

Collected 5 gallons of wort

Pitched 1000 ml of yeast starter. Yeast starter was created on Friday, 2/25/2011. Used 200 ml honey with 800 ml distilled water and ½ tps of yeast nutrient, as I was out of DME. Yeast was highly flocculent and formed interesting clumps. No stir plate, so that could have had an impact.