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Home > posts > 2013 > 08 > American/Belgium IPA Homebrew
American/Belgium IPA Homebrew Thursday, August 08, 2013, 09:00 PM


I am brewing beer. I will update this as I go. See 2013-08-18 Update, See See 2013-09-05 Update

2013-08-08 Brewing:

I am using this recipe from Bull City Home Brew(which I also saved as a PDF). I am following the recipe except I used WYESTStrain: 3787 | Trappist High Gravity. I chose a Belgium strain because I wanted a Belgium yeast for a fruitier beer and I chose_this_ strainbecause it can handle a bit higher fermentation temp and my apartment is around 78.

Standard Beer recipe style:

Batch Size: 1.25 gal

Estimated OG: 1.069

Measured OG: 1.059

FG: 1.012

ABV: 6.2%

IBUs: 55.2 (calculated, not measured)

2.10 lb 2-row American Malt (Rahr) (1.8 SRM) (64.6%)

0.74 lb Munich, Light (Weyermann) (6.0 SRM) (22.8 %)

0.27 lb Carared (Weyermann) (19.5 SRM) (8.4 %)

0.14 lb Caramunich I (Weyermann) (19.5 SRM) (4.2 %)

0.13 oz Columbus (US) Hop Pellets [13.10 %] - Boil 60.0 min 19.6 IBUs

0.20 oz Columbus (US) Hop Pellets [13.10 %] - Boil 30.0 min 22.6 IBUs

0.25 tsp Irish Moss (Boil 15.0 mins) (Fining)

0.26 oz Cascade (US) Hop Pellets [6.20 %] - Boil 15.0 min 9.2 IBUs

0.13 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Wyeast) (Boil 10.0 mins)

0.26 oz Cascade (US) Hop Pellets [6.20 %] - Boil 5.0 min 3.7 IBUs

0.5 (or 1.0) pkg WYEST Strain: 3787 | Trappist High Gravity

Photo Post (on aseparate post)

These are my WAY OVERLY DETAILED lab notes

Here are transcribed notes I took while I was working. A PDF "scan" is HERE. The transcribed notes are in the regular font. My comments as I am writing are in italics

A few notes. I liked setting a timer for the full boil so I could always tell what was left and I could respond accordingly. Also, pre-measured hop additions were nice.

The biggest question is why the low OG. I have two guesses. It could be the grain being exposed at the end and/or it could be the temperature drop. I will investigate these two issues as well as everything else i mentioned. Not sure how to deal with the temp drop but I could probably use more strike water and less sparge water to keep the grains covered

Ideas for next time(updated2013-08-08_230914)

I have been doing more reading, etc and I have a few things I think I will try next time:

  1. Open the bag in the mashtun with the edges safely secured aroundthe edges (bungee cord? rubber-band?). Keep the lid on lightly. Retie bag before sparge. Need to make sure to remind shop to tie off with a slip-know

  2. Check the mash temperature often (maybe every 15 min?) with hot (but not too hot) water ready to add to bring it up. And stir (if it's too hot, it'll be the equivalent of a mash out)

  3. Also add water to keep grains covered. This should go along well with the previous step.

Alternatively, since thereisn't too much volume, I could do a full-volume, no-sparge mash. But from my reading, it_lowers_efficiency.

Also, I should start measuring (calculating) efficiency so I can calibrate

2013-08-18 Update:

****Around 10:10 pm, I carefully moved the fermenter to the counter and let it sit while I sanitized everything else. The fermenter read 73F. When I opened it up, I saw a lot of stuff floating on the top. I do not know if that is yeast or hops. There looked like there was even more on the bottom. (see photo post)

At round 10:25, I used the auto siphon into the secondary and I did my best to keep it just below the liquid line. I got nervous since I didn't want toincorporate any air into the hose and I didn't want much trub. However, I also started to suck up some of the trub so I clamped it off and pulled the siphon. I then let out the clamp just enough to let most of the rest of the beer pour into the secondary.

I think I had it too low and/or chickened out and clamped way too soon. It looks like I only got about 1/2 a gallon into the secondary! That sucks! There was so much liquid left over. So, for next time, I will be more careful about where the siphon sits. I think I have a bit more room than I realize with the plasticpiece on the endof the siphon. (see photos)

I wasn't planning on taking a gravity measurement since I didn't want to lose ~8oz of liquid but since I had so much left, I took a measure and saw 1.010. That is approx. 6.4% ABV. Not bad!

Also, with so much left, I think I will up the batch size a little bit. I still don't like the idea of wasting so much but at the very least, upping the batch size (maybe 1.5 gal or about 2 gal into the boil) will fix that. I'll also ask around about reducing the trub.

Photos: link


As I was cleaning up, I was playing with the siphon and realized I missed that there was an additional tip to prevent picking up sediment. I'll use that next time too. Oh well. (I guess this really is a learning experience)

2013-09-05 Update: Bottling

Below are a combination of my notes at the time and comments


To sanitize the bottles, I filled a measuring cup with enough sanitizer. I then filled the bottle and swirled. I then poured the bottle back into the measuring cup and, at a certain point, submerged the neck into the sanitizer. I then poured the rest into the cup, shook the bottle, and moved it to the sanitized rack.

OG: 1.059, FG: 1.012 ==> ABV 6.2% (197 calories)

Original Wordpress ID and Date: 6441, 2013-08-08_210053