28 July 2012

posted by benjy edwards

After a long break from brewing, during which time I squeezed in a vacation to Jackson, Wyoming, the National Homebrewer’s Conference in Seattle, and lots of cycling, I’m back to brewing today.  Last night we made a starter of our usual White Labs English Ale yeast, and the first batch is ten gallons of the Harvey’s Sussex Best Bitter clone.  I continue to tweak this recipe to get that powerful earthy, resinous hop flavour for which the original is famous.

Changes from the last batch include reducing the mineral additions and incorporating Progress and Bramling Cross hops, which I recently obtained.  The recipe calls for those two hops, plus Fuggles and East Kent Goldings.  I kept the Fuggles in, but I couldn’t figure out a good way to include the EKG while keeping the emphasis on the earthy Progress and Fuggles, so they were left out.  Bittering was from Progress, with Fuggle and Bramling Cross later for flavour and aroma.

The OG turned out to be 1.041, one point higher than target.  The malt bill remained the same as before.  We encountered no problems during the brew, and for the first time, got to use the infrared thermometer and 50 lb. scale for weighing the grain.

Next week the plan is to brew a double batch of Hophead and a single malt, single hop beer using the same mash as Hophead (100% Maris Otter), and Mt. Hood hops.