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Posts Tagged ‘Nottingham’

It’s taken a week or more to get this brewday post up on the blog. The day job may not be as much fun as either brewing or drinking beer, but it certainly consumes a lot more time and energy. What can you do, eh?

This brew revisited a very successful recipe from a year ago, with a few tweeks. The original idea had been to create a modern hoppy mild in the style of Darkstar‘s formidable Over The Moon. It worked pretty well, and we drank the whole 20 litres ourselves with nobody else really getting a snifter.

The ’09 variety is much the same brew with a few exceptions: it’s a 50L brew length, the roasted barley has been reduced significantly in favour of more patent malt, the yeast has been swapped over to Nottingham Gervin, and ALL the hops are now from Boxshed garden Fuggles and WGV goldings plants. It truly is a Boxshed Dark Garden brew.

The details of the brew day have been lost in the protein haze of time, but everything went to plan over about six hours and the brew has already fermented out. The dark wort was great fun to mess about with and the smells were a treat, particularly the blend of malts and the Fuggle coppers. We can’t wait to get planning the recipe for this year’s Seasonal Stout now.

Anyway, enough with the words, here are some steamy pictures:

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The main point of this brewday was just to get us thinking about brewing again, hence the name. It was a good opportunity to make a fresh session bitter while clearing out The Boxshed, cleaning all my vessels, and taking stock of, well, stocks. We wanted to create an easy drinking bitter with a hoppy finish and layered malts that used up a few reserves along the way. All in all it went pretty well.

After an APA and a stout in recent brews, it was a bit of a shock to mash such a lightweight grist, but it did smell cracking thanks to the small additions of Munich, Crystal and Roast Barley. Run off and returns all passed without incident using a two-stage batch sparge. It was only once the sweet wort was on the boil and we had added a chunk of nice garden Fuggles into the copper that I realised the sachet of ‘S-04’ I had been relying on was actually a wheat beer yeast and no good in this recipe at all.

A quick phone call later and I was picking up my mate Tom who was open to a bribe of a pint of Winter Ale in exchange for a nice scoop of Nottingham from a large vac pack in his brewery. I managed to get them in at the local and get home in time to add the WGV, Protafloc and chiller. The last of my favourite EKGs went in at flameout and then it was just a matter of chilling and pitching. We achieved 25L at the target 1.036, which was on target for a 3.4% beer.

After 24 hours safely in the fermenter, very little was happening with the Thinking Bitter, and as I partly suspected I had rehydrated the Nottingham in >30c water, I decided to skim the break and repitch the rest of Tom’s yeast. It all took off like a rocket and fermented out to 1.010 in another 72hrs. We now have 24L clearing up nicely in a secondary, and have already had a few shots of the stuff just to see how it’s getting on. Very nice it is too. Here are the few photos we managed:

Just chillin

Just chillin'

..and maxin

..and maxin'

Solid seive shot

Solid seive shot

Hoppiness

Hoppiness

Fermenting (well, it wasnlt actually, but...)

Fermenting (well, it wasnlt actually, but...)

Drinking out of the FV is v.classy

Drinking out of the FV is v.classy

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