End of the Year Reflection

With just a few days left in the year I have 1 brew left to do. The yeast starter is burping away as we speak, the grain bill/hop schedule is already written out and set in stone, the water profile has been determined and I have a strong idea of where this brew will take me. The 2016 barley wine is on its way.

This time last year I did not have much under my belt. About 20 brews of which none used a yeast starter, water chemistry, actual hop AA, or anything other than “Well this sounds good”. This year my brewing knowledge and experience grew exponentially. My beers went from hit and miss decent brews to near bulls-eye awesome brews. A few earlier in the year were off their mark but, every brew gets closer and closer to what I want my brews to be. I have begun to dabble in sours. I have started to care for my water. I have began to manage my yeast. I have really started to focus on why I use certain grains/hops.

There is still so much to work on though. I have set a few goals for my “Brew Years Resolutions”.

  • 25% of my beers are going to be mixed/non sacc fermentations
  • I will build 2 temp controlled fermentation chambers with remote access.
  • Enter over 12 beers into competitions
  • Start kegging
  • More water care
  • Grow my own ingredients
  • Blog every brew + updates
  • Share even more of my creations

I really hope to achieve my brew year goals. With the recent gift of all 4 brewing element (thanks to my supportive sister and parents) I hope to grasp more of the science behind the brews I am creating.

To get a head start on one goal here is the next brew recipe.

2016 Barley Wine

Water

  • 85 Calcium
  • 26 Magnesium (water isn’t that great)
  • 14 Sodium
  • 75 Chlorine
  • 90 Sulfate
  • 1 Bicarbonate
  • Mash pH 5.4
  • Thicknes of 1.1 qt/lbs

Grist

  • 97% Thomas Fawcett Maris Otter
  • 3% Thomas Fawcett Crystal 45
  • 1 oz Thomas Fawcett Roasted barley as a colour adjustment

Mash

  • Mash in and rest at 100F for 30 min (Acid rest A)
  • Raise via induction to 113 for 15 min (Acid rest B)
  • Raise via induction to 130 for 20 min (Protien rest)
  • Raise via induction to 145 for 45 min (Saccharification Beta)
  • Raise via induction to 156 for 30 min (Saccharification Alpha)
  • Raise via induction to 168 for 5 min (Mashout)
  • Sparge with 168F and collect 7 gal or less if runnings drop below 1.020

Once the runnings have been collected the wort will be boiled down to about 4 gallons with a target OG of 1.120-1.130

When the volume is around 4.75 gal the 60 min boil addition schedule will begin

Boil

  • 60 min 1 oz Phoenix 13.35% AA
  • 15 min 1 whirlfloc tab
  • 15 min 1 oz Phoenix 13.35% AA

Ferment with WLP007 at a pitch rate of 1.25 millions cells/ml/P

Ferment ambient at ~70F

Targets

  • OG 1.125
  • FG 1.030
  • IBU 80
  • SRM 15
  • ABV 12.5
  • Final volume ~3.5 gal

Next week I will post how brew day went and the next planned brew. This one is for a competition!

Cheers
MD

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