Sunday, January 18, 2009

Red Rye Ale- "Live" Blog

Today we are making a Red Rye Ale. 

I love Cane & Ebel's Red Rye. This is not exactly a clone, but takes inspiration from there. I am looking for a hoppy brew, with some sweetness and body, but not as syrupy as some other brews. I contemplated using the Northwest ale yeast, to let it be more malty, but I'm interested in a crisper beer. I also have a yeast cake from last week's Hop Bomb IPA that I can't resist trying, so I'll be using the yeast cake, I think. Also, if the efficiency is better than it has been the SG should be around 1.080, so the yeast cake might be nice. I'm mashing at 155F, so I should get some good sugars in the beer.

The grain bill is as follows:
9# 2-Row
5# Malted Rye
.5# Dark Munich
2# Belgian Aromatic (I like this and want a beer with depth, so it is an experiment)
    1.5 oz Roasted Barley (For color, hoping it makes it nice and red)

I'll be "live" blogging this by updating as the day goes on. It is currently 1210pm, here is what has happened so far.

1000am- Looked at some websites to predict the SG and look at the volumes for mash and sparge water. 
1010am- Pulled 4.8 gallons of tap water (5.4ph) and 1 gallon of distilled water, brought to 185F.
1100am- Mash water was at 185F, took out 1 quart of hot water and replaced with cold tap water.
1125am- Put hot water into the mash tun, temperature dropped to 168F (small spill).
1128am- Doughed in the grains, slowly.
1130am- Measured temperature at 158F
1145am- Measured temperature at 154F
1200pm- Measured temperature at 156F
1225pm- Measured temperature at 154F
1250pm- Measured temperature at 152F, Iodine test says conversion is done.

I'm now trying to hurry up some of the mash out water, by decocting 2 quarts at a time in the electric kettle. I'm going to mash out with 1.5 gallons of water at 190F, trying to do a bit at a time to get the temperature up to 168F so it does not stick.

For hops, I wanted to use simcoe and amarillo, but the LHBS was sparse on hops  (as usual!). Last week they had almost a full stock, but not this week. I have Chinook, which I plan to use for bittering, Cascade and Cluster for flavor and 2oz of Willamette for flavor/aroma and dry hopping.

It is about here that I gave up the live blogging. We racked last week's IPA, which is good, fruity with nice aroma and a complex balance of hops. 

As for the Rye beer, I tried to mash out with 180F water, 1.25 gallons into 6 gallons of 152F mash with 17 pounds of grain. This raised it 3F, so next time I'll use 200+F water. I was worried about melting the husks, but just watered down the mash. The fly sparge worked well, and we pulled something like 8 gallons out. We used a 90 minute boil, adding .5 oz of Chinook for 75 minutes, .5 oz of Cluster for 60 minutes, .5 oz of Chinook for 30, .5 of Cluster for 25, .5 of Cascade for 15, 1 oz of Willamette for 10, saving 1 oz of Wilamette dry hopping. We ended up with something like 6 gallons of wort, maybe a bit more. There was a ton of trub, but we put 5.5 gallons into the fermenter. I had hoped to use the yeast cake of American Ale yeast, but in getting the hops out we disturbed it and ended up pouring it out. Instead, we used non-expanded Wyeast NW Ale, and after a day it brewed. 

So- I learned that I'm not ready to use the yeast cake if I can't control the trub. We should use a starter. Mashing out needs to be hotter. I also should be more careful with volume. I still don't have a good way of getting from the kettle to the carboy via siphon, so i think I need a filtering mechanism or to volaruf. The beer smells good, very malty, a nice change from last weekend's smells of a grapefruit humping an apricot.

1 comment:

  1. Update. The yeast bent me over and now it tastes like it came from Belgium. You know, infected, but in a bad way (unlike the Belgians, who even if yeasty and infected are worth it).