Not IPA-series: No. 1 – Sour mash wild proprietary saison

I’ve gotten pretty good at drinking sour beers. Lately I’ve been slacking though. After my trip to Belgium my respect and interest for the gueuze, lambic, framboise and kriek was very intense. But due to the prices and availability in Sweden (compared to Belgium at least) my mouth haven’t been moisten by the tart drink.
One of my spring projects will satisfy this thirst. Since lambic takes a long time to mature I will go another route to get my beer tart and sour.

This is the first post of what I will call Not IPA-series.

I will perform a sour mash and then pitch a sacch.-yeast to ferment it out. To get some more traditional Belgian feel to it all I will let the wort cool outside under the open sky to introduce some of the local bugs.

Step by step:

1.The first step of the mash will be a regular one hour mash in the lower temps to ensure a highly fermentable wort. The grist will consist  (yep!) of mostly pilsner malt with addition of some wheat, malted or unmalted – haven’t decided yet. This is recognized as a lambic malt bill.

2. The souring part of the mash will start after the hour long mash rest is finished and cooled down to a more suitable temperature for the lactobacteria. Unlike yeast the lacto. thrive in higher temperatures up to 50°c. I will use an aquarium heater to hold the temperature at 40°c for 48 hours.
2.1 Adding the bacteria is very simple and consist only of adding unmashed grains to the 40° mash. The grains have lactic bacteria on them and a handful will be sufficent to start the fermentation.
2.2 To acquire the right flavors the environment has to be anaerobic which means that there’s no oxygen in contact with the lacto. The lactic bacteria I’m interested in is the L. Delbcruckii which makes lactic acid (what we want) when working without oxygen. How to create this environment is pretty simple using one of two methods. The first involves only plastic wrap and the second plastic wrap and Co2.
Plastic wrap: Place the plastic wrap firmly on the grain bed and press out any occurring air bubbles.
Co2 and Plastic wrap: Fill the mash kettle (or your vessel of choice) with Co2 and then wrap the plastic around the edges and fixate.

3. Wait 48 to 72 hours. Keep the temperature steady and the environment oxygen free!

4. After your wait is done smell your mash and use this as a referece:

5. Separate your wort form the grains and continue your brew day as usual.

To end things off this time, here’s a picture from Moeder Lambic in Brussels (their smaller location): wpid-IMG_20130627_215625.jpg



New era: satire, capitalism and critique just for fun.

Spring is coming to this desolated god forsaken country. Even though a hot summer calls for a light, refreshing and fizzy brew we felt that It will not suffice in this hard climate. Therefore were spending this Sunday brewing (as god intended) a vienna lager (3A) that with its darker hues will keep our savage people in check.

This brew will comment the moving of new political-ish ideas in the Swedish home brewing community. Helpless peasants in the shadow of the Goliath. I’m being dramatic, but I feel that theres a storm coming. Hopefully it wont take down our houses but power our mills. The lines between us and them are soon to be more blurry and the community will be less homogeneous and more connected.

We will call this beer Brewmasters premium golden shower.

This is my second go at this style and what I like about it is the crisp and satisfying freshness combined with malty malty malts. Yep.

Last time I tried brewing this style I wasn’t pleased with the crispness. It was a bit dull and maybe a little bit to sweet (not because of high FG) so I will add a bit more hops this time. I’m also adding some late hop addition to spice things up since it’s intended as a early summer beer. It’s a bit out of style but here it goes:

OG: 1.049
Mash temp: 66°c 60 min/76°c 15 min
Boil time: 90 min
IBU: 35-ish
Fermentation temp: 11°c

Pilsner (weyermann) 59.6%
Munich I (weyermann) 38.5%
Carafa Spec. III (weyermann) 1.9%

Magnum (14.7%AA) 35 IBU @ 60 min.
Hallertauer Mittlefruh (4%AA)17gr @ 1 min.

Fermentis S-23 2 pkg rehydrated

Also I will harvest the yeast. Self explanatory picture below:

Yeast harvest

Recap: oven roasted malt porter-ish.

So I thought it would be good time to give you guys an update on the results of my roasted porter. I have to confess I haven’t done a great job of reviewing it while it was still existing. It had a short life span. Mostly due to a very successful wedding.

Since I can’t really write as I’m drinking it i’ll just do a all in one reflection.

Before mashing the grain had a very burnt scent to them comparing with commercial brown malt. The wet version was a bit sweeter, still a bit charcoaly tough. This carried through into the beer in some degree, it got a comment along the line: ”It’s has a very burnt flavor”. At first I was afraid it wouldn’t settle enough and be to overwhelming but it did in fact become very drinkable since it was so light in alcohol.

Sessionable yes, but it could have benefited from some more residual sweetness to balance the roastiness. I think it finished at 1.014 which isn’t that low but still not high for a beer whit a lot of roast character. So I would go a bit crazy with some light crystal if I’d do it again.

The color was light brown, similar to new castle, but did not match in flavor. It was packing more dark grain punch than what it looked like.

I probably won’t roast my own grains again, it’s not worth the time if you ask me. I have yet to master the commercially available malts. But for you brewers out there still interested in roasting your grains: go for it! My only advice would be, try to use them in smaller proportions.

My recipe was: 1.9 kg each of the two roast, 2 kg marris otter and 400 grams of caramunich I.
For hops I used just some First Goldings at 60, 10 and 5 minutes – around 25 IBUs.

Here’s some pics from the wedding party…




Clarity Issue or Not?

I want to add section to my earlier post about the hibiscus saison. The last picture of the finish-ish beer shows a deep red and pretty cloudy and turbid beer. I can’t for sure say if the turbidity is just the chill haze that was apparent in the clean beer or if it is a additional haze created by the hibiscus. The hibiscus tea itself wasn’t hazy itself but its hard to say, with what I know, if a reaction with the beer could have caused the haze.

Here is a picture of the clean beer, with chill haze. It cleared up a bit when it got warmer.

clean beer

Fermenting away


Just wanted to upload some quick updates on the session cda and amber/red ale. It’s a lot more fun with transparent fermentation vessels.




Top: red ale Middle: Session CDA Bottom: both of them

From what I can see the amber ale pitched with us-05 is fermenting a bit more vigorous than the bry-97. But the cda with bry-97 is also a bit darker which makes it harder to see!