Friday, January 29, 2010

Brew Day #4 - Extra Special Bitter

Extra Special Bitter
8-C Extra Special/Strong Bitter (English Pale Ale)
Author: StunnedMonkey
Date: 1/29/2010

BeerTools Pro Color Graphic

Size: 5.5 gal
Efficiency: 75.5%
Attenuation: 75.0%
Calories: 179.56 kcal per 12.0 fl oz
 Original Gravity: 1.059 (1.048 - 1.060)
Terminal Gravity: 1.015 (1.010 - 1.016)
Color: 12.32 (6.0 - 18.0)
Alcohol: 5.78% (4.6% - 6.2%)
Bitterness: 41.7 (30.0 - 50.0)

11.0 lb Golden Promise Pale
8 oz Crystal Malt 20°L
6 oz Crystal Malt 80°L
2 oz Crystal Malt 120°L
3.0 oz Fuggle (4.8%) - added during boil, boiled 45 min
1.0 Whirlfloc Tablets (Irish moss) - added during boil, boiled 15 min
1.0 oz Fuggle (4.8%) - steeped after boil
1.0 ea White Labs WLP002 English Ale

MASH - Liquor: 3.0 gal; Strike: 169.27 °F; Target: 152.0 °F

Mash Water: 1.5 tsp Calcium Carbonate, 1.5 tsp Gypsum, .5 tsp Calcium Chloride, 1.25 tsp Epsom Salts, .5 tsp Baking Soda
Sparge Water: 1.75 tsp Gypsum, .5 tsp Calcium Chloride, 1.5 tsp Epsom Salts, .5 tsp baking Soda

Results generated by BeerTools Pro 1.5.6

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Week of January 24, 2010

16 oz Not that There's Anything Wrong with that Amber Ale
20 oz Puffy Shirt IPA
20 oz Manzier Imperial Red
32 oz Barium Contrast Swallow (not counted in totals) 
16 oz Not that There's Anything Wrong with that Amber Ale
16 oz Look to the Cookie Pale Ale
16 oz Mulva's Indian Brown
12 oz Bluegrass Brewing Nut Brown 
20 oz Not that There's Anything Wrong with that Amber Ale 
32 oz Puffy Shirt IPA 
12 oz Victory Festbier 
12 oz Founders Backwoods Bastard 
12 oz Great Divide Titan IPA
12 oz Great Divide Saint Bridget's Porter 
16 oz Paul Till's Special Bitter
16 oz Paul Till's Northern German Altbier
20 oz Not that There's Anything Wrong with that Amber Ale 
12 oz Bell's Hopslam  

Jazz Video of the Week

Buddy Rich - Straight, No Chaser, 1971 
Classic Thelonious Monk composition from the early '50's. Jeff Stout on solo trumpet with Lin Biviano on lead. And of course Buddy on the drums.  There will never be another Buddy Rich.


Brew Day #3 - Woodford Reserve Project

Copy follows eventually, if motivation can be summoned.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Brew Day #2 - Robust Porter

Second brew day of 2010, and a rare mid-week brew. Today I'm making a Robust Porter, BJCP category 12B. Robust Porter is unquestionably one of my favorite beer styles. If I could have only one style of beer for the rest of my days...well it probably wouldn't be  Robust Porter. But if I could have THREE styles, then Robust Porter makes my list. Commercial examples would be Deschutes Black Butte Porter, Sierra Nevada Porter, Edmund Fitzgerald Porter, or Bell's Porter. My beer of course will taste nothing like those beers.

Grains (Mash at 152):

12 lb American 2-Row
1.5 lbs Munich
1.5 lbs Crystal 40
1 lb Chocolate Malt
10 oz Black Patent

Hop Additions:
2.5 oz East Kent Goldings (4.9) 60 minutes
1 oz East Kent Goldings (4.9) 15 minutes
1 oz East Kent Goldings (4.5) post boil

Yeast is WLP0002 (White Labs English Ale), Ferment at 66

Estimated OG 1.066
SRM ~30
IBU's  45

Just about 5 hours from starting the Mash water to pitching the yeast.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Week of January 17, 2010

12 oz Lagunitas IPA
16 oz Mulva's India Brown 
20 oz Mulva's India Brown
20 oz Manzier Imperial Red 
32 oz Bell's Two-Hearted Ale  
12 oz Victory Festbier 
12 oz Great Divide Saint Bridget's Porter 
20 oz Sam Adams Winter Lager (Applebee's...blech) 
20 oz Puffy Shirt IPA 
20 oz Mulva's India Brown
16 oz Festivus American Red 
20 oz Puffy Shirt IPA
12 oz Bluegrass Brewing Company Nut Brown Ale
20 oz Manzier Imperial Red 
24 oz Negra Modelo 
16 oz It's Moops! Oatmeal Stout
12 oz Bell's Hopslam
48 oz Assorted Home and Commercial Samples
32 oz New Belgium Fat Tire Ale 
16 oz Not There's Anything Wrong with that Amber Ale
16 oz Mulva's Indian Brown

Jazz Video of the Week
Eric Miyashiro - Maynard Ferguson's "Give it One", 2000
Every young player wanted to one day sound like Maynard. Few were successful. Then there's Eric Miyashiro.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Brew Day #1 - Bohemian Pilsner

First brew day of 2010. I'm brewing a Bohemian Pilsner (Category 2B), sometimes referred to as Czech Pils since the classic example of the style is Czechoslovakia's Pilsner Urquell. This is only my second attempt at brewing a lager. It's a tough style to do well as such a light and crisp beer has nothing to conceal any imperfections, sort of like standing naked under florescent lighting. As such I fully expect this beer to taste like Ass in a Glass. A pale, blotchy, flabby ass at that.

  The recipe itself is uncomplicated. Twelve pounds of Continental Pilsner Malt, 12 ounces of Carapils, and 4 ounces of Acidulated malt to help lower the PH. A single infusion mash at 154. The target OG is 1.055. There are 4 hop additions, each using Saaz hops at 3.9% AA. 1.5 oz at 60 minutes, 2 oz at 30 minutes, 1 oz at 10 minutes, and 1 oz at flameout. This gives us 40.6 IBU's (Rager). For water I'm using 11 gallons of Reverse Osmosis water, with the addition  of 1 gram of chalk, 1 gram of epsom salts, and a dash of table salt. This should get me pretty close to the soft water profile that this style requires. The yeast is White Labs WLP800 Pilsner yeast. I'm using two vials, one utilizing a 2 liter starter, and the second pitched directly for a little insurance. I'm pitching cool at 48 to try and avoid diacytal production, and then fermenting at 50 degrees.

I hit my mash temp on the money at 154, at a PH of 5.2. Sent 8 gallons to the brew pot for a 90 minute boil. With all of this Pilsner Malt I want a full 90 minute boil for sufficient DMS reduction. My OG after the boil came in at 1.062 which is 7 points higher than I calculated and 6 points high of the guidelines. Damn. With luck I can get sufficient attenuation from the WLP800 to get it down to a finishing gravity of 1.016 or lower.

Two mishaps...I broke a Better Bottle, which is amazing since they're made of plastic and seemingly unbreakable. (It says as much right on their web site.) But I'm just that good. I also broke a garden hose by ripping the metal coupling right off the hose itself, which is something I'm not sure I could have done had I tried. I'm like Conan. The Barbarian, not the wronged Tonight Show host. Don't fuck with me today. Seriously.


Yeast pitched, aerated, and safe in the cooler at fermentation temp 4 hours after leaving the brew pot:


Sunday, January 10, 2010

Week of January 10, 2010

34 oz (Club Meeting) 2 oz pours of 16 homebrews, plus 2 oz Founders Backwoods Bastard
21 oz Three Floyds Munster Fest
12 oz Victory Prima Pils 
16 oz Puffy Shirt IPA
21 oz Rogue Shakespeare Stout
12 oz Big Sky Brewing Moose Drool
21 oz Southern Tier Unearthly Imperial IPA
12 oz Barley Island Barfly IPA
12 oz New Holland Cabin Fever Brown Ale
12 oz Founders Breakfast Stout
20 oz Poppy's Little Sloppy Pale Ale
40 oz Manzier Imperial Red
16 oz It's Moops! Oatmeal Stout
40 oz Puffy Shirt IPA
20 oz Mad Anthony's Winter Ale
20 oz Mad Anthony's Double Stout
16 oz It's Moops! Oatmeal Stout
 Jazz Video of the Week
Duke Ellington, The Opener, 1964. Trumpet Soloist Cat Anderson is insane.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Week of January 3, 2010

12 Oz Pilsner Urquell
16 oz
Not That There's Anything Wrong With That Amber Ale
20 oz Puffy Shirt IPA
20 oz It's Moops! Oatmeal Stout
16 oz Not That There's Anything Wrong With That Amber Ale
22 Oz Green Flash West Coast IPA
20 oz Bell's Two Hearted Ale
24 oz
Poppy's Little Sloppy Pale Ale
20 oz It's Moops! Oatmeal Stout
16 oz Bubble Boy Belgian Dubbel
16 oz Manzier Imperial Red 
16 oz Poppy's Little Sloppy Pale Ale
16 oz Not That There's Anything Wrong With That Amber Ale
24 oz Bass Ale
20 oz Puffy Shirt IPA

Jazz Video of the Week
Jon Faddis, Here's that Rainy Day - Montreaux Jazz Festival, 1977 


Here’s one that you’re unlikely to find on the draft list at your local Chili’s. Bashah. A limited-run collaboration between California’s Stone Brewing Company (Ruination IPA, Arrogant Bastard Ale) and Scotland’s BrewDog (Tactical Nuclear Penguin, Riptide), it is of course exactly what you were expecting …a Black Double Belgian IPA checking in at 8.6% alcohol and retailing for $10 per eleven ounce bottle. OK, I guess I wasn’t expecting that either. Nevertheless when I spied a few of these unusual beers on the shelf at the local bottle shop I felt compelled to purchase a couple, though at a calculated price of $14.54 per pint I wasn’t sure if I really wanted to like this beer or not.

But it was with much fanfare that I finally broke open one of these bottles last week and shared short pours with a half-dozen like-minded homebrewers and beer dorks. The tasting generated a common response among those who tried it…an uncomfortable silence punctuated by a confused, “What the fuck?” Right. The beer itself was medium-bodied though muscular, with notes of coffee, chocolate cake, plums and maraschino cherries in the nose, with a strong undercurrent of toffee, raisins, and dates in the palate, all beautifully balanced by the intense herbal and pine notes of the hops…OK, I completely made that shit up. Seriously. What kind of doorknob talks like that about beer?

So what did it really taste like? I dunno. Sort of like equal parts Bell’s Expedition Stout, Green Flash West Coast IPA, and Victory Golden Monkey. Which is to say...what the fuck? None of this is to suggest that this is an unpleasant beer by any means. On the contrary, in the right quantities (like say, a 2 ounce pour) it’s actually pretty tasty…in a “have you tried these herbed, poached gerbil brains?” sort of way. A unique taste sensation, but you really don’t feel moved to Super-Size it.

The ultimate question is, how does it compare to other commercial examples of Black Double Belgian IPA? Well, I suppose when someone else actually brews one then we’ll know. Until then Bashah will simply have to set the standard. Such as it is.

Saturday, January 2, 2010


1 Pint - Stunned Monkey's Puffy Shirt IPA
22 oz - Southern Tier Imperial Big Red Ale

Friday, January 1, 2010


1 Pint - Stunned Monkey's Festivus American Red Ale
1 Pint - Stunned Monkey's Poppy's Little Sloppy Pale Ale
12 oz - Founder's Porter (Trion Tavern)
12 oz - Southern Tier Krampus Imperial Lager (Trion Tavern)
12 oz - Magic Hat Roxy Rolles Amber Ale