24 April 2010

posted by benjy edwards

We still have last year’s harvest of the Cascade hops from our yard and I’ve wanted to brew with them, so assistant brewer Colin and I brewed an American pale ale today.  The malt bill is simply 95% Maris Otter and 5% wheat, with a target gravity of 1.046.

I used the remaining Galena hops for bittering and then homegrown Cascade for flavour and aroma, with less than an ounce of Amarillo included at the end of the boil.  Actual gravity was 1.045 after a shorter recirculation and wort collection than usual.  The chill went well, the wort was running at about 68F the entire time with full flow from the kettle.

The Harvey’s Old Ale clone brewed a week ago was racked to two corny kegs, no dry hop of course.  Gravity was down to 1.012; if it drops two points in secondary then it will be 5.1% ABV, which is almost 1% higher than Harvey’s version.  For some unknown reason our original gravity was much higher than expected last week – perhaps the extract potential of the darker malts is higher than what is contained in our spreadsheet.  The colour is much closer to the original beer (darker than our first attempt) and right now has a nice dark sugar/toffee flavour.   We shall see how it develops in secondary.

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