Bald Brewer News – Spring Is Here!
Now that the temperatures are rising, prepare your classic summer beer, so it is ready to share with friends and family at those BBQ, hiking, mountain biking and camping excursions. Below are four different techniques, depending on experience, motivation and time and/or equipment limitations to make a great American Pale Ale. Remember, we are comfortable tweaking any of these recipe ideas to your liking. We can easily adjust the hop character, color, alcohol content and body of the beer on the fly. The goal is to create your own, unique style
1) Super Easy Technique (extract with grain recipe) – Start with our #1 selling Sunsplash American Pale Ale Beer Kit. Then, dry hop in the secondary fermenter with some Cascade, Citra. Glacier, and/or Eldorado hops. Use White Labs WLP008, WLP041 or WLP051 to accentuate the malt/citrus character! We will help you learn the subtle differences between these strains. Also, you can further enhance the citrusy character by using one of our Brewer’s Best all natural flavoring such as Tangerine or Grapefruit. These can be added to the secondary fermenter or as late as in the bottling or kegging process!
2) Also Super easy, Build It From Scratch With Bald Brewer (extract with grain recipe)
7.5 Lbs Light Liquid Malt Extract (LME)
8 oz Maris Otter Pale 2-Row
8oz Munich Lt. Malt
8oz Crystal 15L
8oz Flaked Barley
1oz Falconer’s Flight (7C’s) Hop (60)
1oz Glacier (30)
1oz Citra (10)
1oz Cascade (5)
2oz Cascade (dry hop for 7 days in secondary)
Muslin grain bag, caps, and priming sugar (if needed)
White Labs Yeasts WLP008, WLP041, or WLP051 (let us help you know the difference)
3) Intermediate Level, Build it using a “Brew In A Bag” (BIAB) Technique
Omit 8 oz Maris Otter Pale 2-row above and replace LME with 10 Lbs of American 2-Row. Other specialty grain, hops, and yeast suggestions will remain the same.
The bag should be rated for burst limit of 50 lbs or higher, large enough to hold your grain with room to spare and wide enough to drape over the top of the pot (although some folks simply tie it off and lower it in). Also, keep in mind that to use the BIAB technique, you will need at least an 8 gallon capacity pot (10 is preferred) to brew a 5 gallon batch of beer. It also really helps (but not mandatory) to have a high BTU burner, such as a Bayou Classic, for greater temperature control. Please see instructions below!
Brew in a Bag step-by-step
Step 1 – Heat the water and add the entire pre-boil volume of water to the kettle and heat to the target strike temperature. This is usually around 160 for a five gallon batch, as the grain addition will cause the temperature to drop.
Step 2 – Add the grains Once the strike temperature is hit, turn off the heat and put the bag into the kettle, ensuring a good overhang around the kettle to stop it from slipping in. Next, add the grains. Make sure they are fully submerged and stir gently until there are no more pesky dough balls in the mash. Once the grains are added, and the dough balls removed. put the lid on your kettle to reduce heat loss.
Step 3: Mashing – By mashing in a kettle, heat will be lost at a faster rate than if using an insulated mash tun. Keep an eye on the temperature. If it starts to drop, add more heat from whichever heat source you are using (e.g. gas). Another approach is to wrap a blanket round the kettle. Obviously, remove the kettle from the heat source before reaching for the blanket! No matter what option you go with, don’t reduce the mash time. Since there is no sparge stage, this is the only opportunity you have to extract as much of the fermentable sugars as possible.
Step 4: Collecting Wort – After about 60-70 minutes, the mash stage should be complete. Slowly pull the bag out of the pot and let any excess water drain into the wort below. Be careful, the bag will be very hot. To get as much wort as possible out of the grain, I keep a separate bucket handy with a colander placed in the bottom. After mashing, put the grain bag in the colander and leave alone for about 10 minutes. This should result in some additional wort being collected at the bottom which can then be added back to the brew kettle. Some others will set up a pulley system with a ladder to hang the grain bag over the kettle so the wort will drain right into the kettle.
That’s it! The wort should now be ready for the boil. From here on out the steps are the same as if you were doing an extract or all-grain brew.
ENJOY! Mark, Bald Brewer.