Sunday, January 24, 2010

Fall Spice Ale

For the fall I wanted to make a nice spiced ale using pumpkin pie spices. I decided to follow Jamil's recipe from Brewing Classic Styles. I agree with his idea that it's not really the pumpkin that makes the pie good, it's the spices. Plus I thought it would be a lot easier to not use pumpkin in my beer. Because I'm using the yeast cake for a high gravity brown ale I decided to go with Wyeast 1028 London Ale which has a little higher attenuation than some other English yeasts.

The brew day went pretty well, I don't recall having any problems. I think this is the first of my partial mashes that went smoothly which is kinda funny because it's my last one. I received a cooler for my birthday and converted it to use as a mash tun.

The only problem I had was on bottling day. I forgot to stir in the priming solution after I racked the beer into the bottling bucket. Since I also added the spices to the priming solution, I ended up with some bottles that were over carbed others that were near flat and the spicing was weak in general with virtually no spice flavor in the under carbed bottles.

Luckily, the base beer was pretty good. Nice carmely flavor with a touch of toffee and dark fruit. The mouth feel, and spice aroma varied depending on which bottle you had and how carbonated it was. Overall, I think the recipe was good. I just need to clean up my technique a bit. Maybe next year...

Expected OG: 1.061
Actual OG: 1.063
Expected FG: 1.016
Actual FG: 1.015
IBU: 26
Boil: 60 minutes
Pre-boil Volume: 5.5 gallons
Final Volume: 5 gallons
Apparent Attenuation: 75%
ABV: 6.3%

Briess Pilsner DME 5 lbs.

Partial Mash Grains:
Crisp Maris Otter 2 lbs.
Briess Caramel 40L 8.6 oz.
Castle Aromatic 8 oz.
Briess Special Roast 4 oz.
Briess Caramel 120L 4.4 oz.

60 min, Warrior 15.8% 0.6 oz.

½ tsp Cinamon
¼ tsp Ginger
1/8 tsp All Spice
1/8 tsp Nutmeg

Wyeast 1028 London Ale 1 qt starter

Spring water from Welpman Spring in Morgan County, MO

Partial Mash (stove top method): In a 8 qt. stock pot, heat 7 quarts of water to 165˚, meanwhile pre-heat another 8qt pot in oven (set to warm) add grain bag and grains to preheated pot, then slowly add water and stir thoroughly. Mash temp should be about 154˚. Move pot to preheated oven for 60 minutes.

After about 30 minutes, heat 5 quarts of water to about 175˚. When mash is done, pull out the grain bag and let it drain for a few minutes. Add bag to heated water stir and let sit for 20 minutes to rinse out any remaining sugars. Should end up with around 10+ quarts of wort.

Add 3 gallons water and wort to brew kettle (for a total of around 5.5 gal.), add 2 lbs. DME and stir, heat to a boil, add hops and start 60 minute timer. At about 15 min. add a 1 tsp of Irish Moss to help with clarity and the rest of the DME.

Chill wort to about 68˚ or less, transfer to carboy, aerate, take gravity, pitch yeast.


Brewed on 10/7/09 by myself.

10/8/12:30 – pitched yeast at about 66˚. No real problems with this batch, went pretty smooth. About 70% mash efficiency.

10/15 – beer cellar is a little cold, temps are below 60˚. Moved into office. I think it fermented out but I'm not sure, going to let it warm up a bit just to make sure.

11/15 – Bottling day. 4.2 oz of corn sugar boiled in 2 cup water plus spices added to sugar water at flame out and allowed to cool. Filled 24 - 12 ounce bottles, 13 - 22oz bottles and 2 - 330 ml bottles (the 2nd one only about ¾ full).

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