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Freedom Ale Part Deux

1 Sep

I was trying to recapture the magic from the 1st Freedom Ale, as Uncle Ed called it one of the best beers he ever had. This beer fermented out a bit too much and lost all residual sweetness so it was more bitter than it should’ve been, but still good. Rating this 85%

Freedom2

Elderflower Ale

19 May

I wanted to make something with Elderflower after getting a bottle of St. Germain liquor, an amazing beverage that can be added to cocktails or sipped on. This beer came out very light, crisp and refreshing. This beer gets the dubious distinction of my FIRST BOTTLE BOMB ever after 2 years of brewing. I’m pretty sure this happened because I added a bit over 1 cup of priming sugar when bottling…I thought because my final volume was almost 6 gallons, the extra priming sugar would be okay. Not so much…luckily the exploding bottle didn’t harm us, or the animals. It exploded only 4 days after being in the bottle, so I quickly bagged up the remaining bottles and moved them to a safer place. Then I had them cooled ASAP and drank em up quickly. No other bottles blew up, so I guess I got lucky. Giving this beer an 86% because I over carbed it and the spices didn’t come through as much as I wanted.

elder

elder

Gin Ale

21 Apr

This is another recipe from Brooklyn’s Seasonal Recipe book – and it’s a great recipe. This beer isn’t for everyone, and easily one of the stranger brews you would ever drink. If you don’t like Gin, just stop reading now. My favorite drink (after beer and wine) is a dirty gin martini, so I had to try this beer when I saw the recipe. It’s not very malty or hoppy, rather, it’s like a bizarre lager with the gin flavor deep in the background. If you like Gin you will dig this recipe, if you don’t like Gin, fuggedaboutit.

gin

gin

Blackberry Red Ale

14 Apr

This recipe came from Brooklyn Brew Shop’s 52 Season Beer Recipes book – and it came out pretty good. The Blackberries were mashed up with sugar and heated, then added to wort at flame out. The base recipe produced a nice red ale, and the berries added more tartness than sweetness. I stopped using fruit for a long time, but this recipe got me interested in it again. Even though I wanted to go against the recipe and add berries to secondary, I followed their instruction and left everything in primary. It was a pain to get all the Blackberries out before bottling, but nice to know it worked well. I would rate this beer about 85% after it was bottled for 2 months.

Also, I bought a wine cooler for the fermentation. This was the first time I used it, and it worked well!

bb

bb

Wheatley Ale

30 Mar

Second time I used WB06 yeast, and it worked much better this time. This beer was close to 100% after 1 week in the bottle, it was like a super mix of Blue Moon and Hoegaarden. The coriander and orange came through perfectly. It lost a lot of good flavor over time though. Unlike most other home brews, the wheat beers should be enjoyed younger…this beer was no exception.

wheatley

wheatley

Dark Oat Brown

16 Feb

I’m not sure about what happened on this beer. I had a lot of bottle gushers but it certainly wasn’t infected. Must’ve been too much priming sugar when bottling. Wasn’t a big deal anyway cause this was a lackluster affair, not much else to say, rating it 73%.

dark

dark

Smoked Saison

27 Jan

I went to Austin, TX for the first time in 2013 and had a couple smoked saison beers at Jester King Brewery while I was there. I brewed this beer before ever trying a smoked beer, and was surprised to find that I got the flavor profile down pretty close. Only issue? I learned that I’m not a huge fan of this beer variety after a few tastes. This taught me a simple lesson about home brewing: don’t brew a beer style you’re not into drinking! This may seem obvious, but I was sure a smoked beer would’ve been a unique and interesting drink. Didn’t pan out that way. If you like beer with smoked malts, this beer would score around 82% but I can’t objectively rate it myself.

SmokedSaison