Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Starkbier - Dopplebock Lager

I decided over the winter to give a try at my second lager. I'm pretty inexperienced with them, but have slowly been learning how to properly lager. I decided on a dopplebock, partially due to the ingredients I had on hand back in January when I brewed this. I am not even sure where I got the recipe, I know I fudged a lot of it.. I thought the 1/2 lb. of chocolate grains was too much after brewing - it actually turned out to be pretty damn good.
I thought I would call this Starkbier, based on the post lent happenings in Germany right now (that I only learned about this year). After the long winter, Germans will make Starkbier (strong beer). This Starkbier is a stronger bock (Dopplebock) and is served at the Starkbierzeit events in Munich. This is becoming one of Germany's bigger festivals, as it's not over run by tourists like the Oktoberfest has become.

Stakrbier - Dopplebock Lager (I'll probably rename it once it goes on tap)

6.00 lb German Munich Malt
4.00 lb German Pilsner Malt
4.00 lb US Caramel Munich 60L Malt
0.50 lb US Chocolate Malt
0.25 lb US Caramel 120L Malt

1.00 oz US Willamette 4.5 % - 60 mins.
1.00 oz US Willamette 4.5 % - 30 Min

DCL W-34/70 Saflager

OG: 1.076 SG
FG: 1.023 SG
ABV: 7.1%

I fermented this for over a month, and did a 2 day diasetyl rest at around 64 degrees. I kegged it and will be lagering at 34 degrees for 30 days, maybe longer. They say the higher the ABV the longer to lager. I did taste it between transitions and it came out pretty awesome. I grabbed some commercial examples this weekend, and I may have hit mine a bit richer with more chocolate and caramel tones, but I came pretty close. Can't wait to try this one when it's finished!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

West Coast Stout

Since I started brewing, I have been doing a stout every January to put on tap for St. Patrick's Day. Last year I did a Milk Stout (sweet). The year before I did an Oatmeal Stout. This year, since I've been blessed with a mother load of hops at a cheap price (hopsdirect.com), I decided to make a hoppier version of a stout - an American Stout.
Several years ago, I was sitting in Fort Wayne Indiana at Mad Anthony brew pub, drinking a hoppy stout they called "West Coast Stout." I was loving the beer and always thought it would be great to brew something similar. After researching a bit, I found there isn't an exact "West Coast" specific recipe; most refer to anything with more hops as "West Coast," since apparently, the west coast of the US is hoppier than Michigan. Hmm.. Anyhow, it's basically an American Stout. There really isn't a huge hop addition, just a bitter and some Centennial at the end. Anyhow, here's the recipe (mainly from Jamil/Palmer, tweaked a bit - as most all my recipes are!):

Dayton Road Brewing West Coast Stout

US 2-Row Malt 11.50 lb
UK Black Malt 0.69 lb
UK Chocolate Malt 0.50 lb
US Caramel 40L Malt 0.50 lb
UK Wheat Malt 0.50 lb (head retention)

S Magnum 12.1 % 1.50 oz - 60 Min From End
US Centennial 8.7 % 1.00 oz - 5 Min From End

SafAle US-05 (Starter)

OG: 1.060
ABV: 6.9% - tasted it while testing the gravity and WOW. Tastes awesome!

Brew session went pretty well. I was brewing another batch at the same time, and made a yeast starter for both of them. This Stout took off fermenting in about 5 hours. I plan to rack it to a secondary after a couple of weeks and tap it closer to St. Pat's day. I'll post back how it is.. I'm really looking forward to a pint of this beer. :)

Monday, February 15, 2010

DRBPA - Dayton Road Brewing Pale Ale

One thing I've learned about brewing is not to rush things. When I first started, I would brew, then literally sit and stare at the carboy day after day. Since, I just brew a bunch more, so I don't really mind some taking longer than others. Plus, as the saying goes... good things come to those who wait.

For kicks, I thought I would try a quick turn around beer, just to see if it was possible. I picked a fairly easy recipe and opted for a packet of dry yeast. This beer took a total of about 2 weeks or about 12 days.
DRBPA (Dayton Road Brewing Pale Ale)

10.90 lb - US 2-Row Malt
0.75 lb - Belgian Caramel Munich Malt 40
0.50 lb - US Caramel 40L Malt
0.50 lb - US Caramel 20L Malt
0.50 lb - German Wheat Malt

1 oz. - US Magnum - 60 min.
.50 oz. - US Centennial - 10 min.
.50 oz. - US Cascade -10 min.
2 oz. - US Cascade - 0 min.
.50 oz. - US Centennial - 0 min.

Safe-ale US05

OG: 1.060
FG: 1.011

I should have made a starter, because this took a bit to start. But it did ferment out in about a week and a half. I put this right in the keg, and chilled it. Carb'd it the next day and we were enjoying it the Saturday before the Super Bowl. Everyone seemed to enjoy it. Right now, it's a bit too sweet for me and unbalanced. I'm letting it sit for a bit and will go back to it another day. It's not bad, just like I said, pretty sweet. I'm thinking due to all the caramel malts I used.
The picture above is a growler full of it at a Super Bowl party. The color was gorgeous, I just had to take a picture. :)