Sunday, March 20, 2011

Standard/Ordinary Bitter Brewday

In an effort to build our knowledge about the effects of process on brewing, several of us in my local homebrew club, DRAFT, decided to brew the same beer using the same recipe, and compare the results. Since Jeffrey and I came up with the idea, we decided to start small, and pulled the recipe for a Standard/Ordinary Bitter from Jamil Zainasheff’s and John Palmer’s Brewing Classic Styles. Jeff (not to be confused with Jeffrey) decided to call his version an OSB. I, on the other hand, stuck with the acronym as currently configured in the book, and am dubbing my version of the beer Kevin Lolli SOB. I know, I know. Cold. Funny, but cold.

86. Standard/Ordinary Bitter
8 lbs. Muntons 2-row Pale
½ lb. Breiss Crystal 120°
¼ lb. Breiss Special Roast

Mashed @ 150° F w/ 3 gallons of RO water for 60 minutes (@ 165° F)
Sparged @ 168° F with 2 ½ gallons RO water for 15 minutes (@ 180° F)

Added to brew kettle, brought to a boil (60 minute) and added:
w/60 to go: 1.2 oz. Sonnet Goldings Leaf 4.1% AA

w/30 to go: ½ oz. Sonnet Goldings Leaf 4.1% AA

w/15 to go: 1 tsp. Irish Moss

w/1 to go: ½ oz. Sonnet Goldings Leaf 4.1% AA

Chilled, racked to carboy, and pitched Wyeast 1968 London ESB

Brewed: 3/20/2011 @ 70° F
Secondary: ———
Bottled: 3/30/2011 @ 62° F; 1.3 gallons into min-keg w/ .4 oz. table sugar; bottled the rest w/ 1.6 oz. table sugar

OG: 1.040
FG: 1.015

Tasting Notes: 4/25/2011: Since this is an easy drinkin’ light beer, I want to take notes on it while it is still fresh and yummy. Plus, it is almost all gone. Kevin Lolli SOB pours a clear rusty copper—the clarity is impressive, but from what I’ve read, that’s pretty normal with Wyeast 1968. The head is a creamy off-white that offers solid staying power and lacing—it’s no Kevin Lolli lacing, but it will do. The nose is toast and biscuit with light fruitiness and minimal hop aroma, while flavors open with bready caramel and biscuit coupled with light fruitiness in the front before giving way to a drier middle with only a slight touch of bitterness—it is there, but this is most certainly a more malt forward version. The finish is dry and crackery with light lingering bitterness and biscuit. When I remake this, I will up the bittering hop charge to create a better balance between the malt and hops; although it is currently pleasant and very drinkable, it could use a bit more bitterness to better suit the style. The mouthfeel and light carbonation help round the overall beer—the mouthfeel because there is still some substance in the body and the carbonation because it is light and unobtrusive. I’m looking forward to cracking the mini-keg of this and seeing how that goes. Oh, and my version won the inaugural Rockit Cup, hence the sweet ribbon. Glitter & Glory, baby.

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