Monday, April 1, 2013

Brett Again Brewday

Again! I seem to be making a habit of this, which is fine with me, as this certainly won’t be the last batch run through these yeasts. Especially since lambicus is waiting in the wings ever so patiently. And unlike previous iterations, both the bruxellensis Trois and the bruxellensis decided to do their job: they made it down to 1.004 and 1.002, respectively.

144. Brett Again
5 lbs. MFB Pale
5 lbs. Weyermann Pilsen
1 lb. Breiss White Wheat

Mash @ 151° F for 90 minutes w/ 3 ¼ gallons of RO water & 2 g. gypsum; collected almost 2 gallons @ 1.096
Batch sparge @ 166° F for 20 minutes w/ 3 gallons RO water & 2 g. gypsum; collected 3 gallons @ 1.036

Collected 5 gallons; added 2 ½ gallons RO water, brought to a boil (60 minutes), & added:
w/60 to go: 1 ½ oz. Cluster leaf 7.6% AA

w/5 to go: 1 oz. Cluster leaf 7.6% AA

Let stand for 20 minutes, chilled, and split into two 3 gallon carboys:

144a. yeast cake of 136c. WLP644 Brettanomyces bruxellensis Trois plus 3 Hungarian house toast oak cubes
Brewed: 4/1/2013
Secondary: 9/17/2013 @ 1.000; dry hop w/ 1 oz. Citra leaf 13.4% AA
Bottled: 9/23/2013 w/ 2.1 oz. table sugar

OG: 1.052
FG: 1.000

144b. yeast cake of 136d. Wyeast 5122 Brettanomyces bruxellensis plus 3 Hungarian house toast oak cubes
Brewed: 4/1/2013
Secondary: 9/17/2013 @ 0.980; dry hop w/ 1 oz. Citra leaf 13.4% AA
Bottled: 9/23/2013 w/ 2.1 oz. table sugar

OG: 1.052
FG: 0.980

Tasting Notes (1/2/2014): I’m trying these two side by side, both for the sake of comparison and to expedite the process: it has been a while and I’ve got a decent backlog to get through. Stupid brewing. Both beers pour a clear straw with a thin white head; 144b. has better retention and brighter carbonation in the glass, although it is softer on the mouth—144a. is much sharper on the palate, although nothing overly aggressive.

144a: The nose is spicy earth and citrus, specifically lemon zest, although the spiciness is the dominant aroma. The spiciness is also musty/musky, although I’m not sure what is hop-derived or yeast-derived. Flavors start with bright Meyer lemon, moving into cracker and biscuit malt with lemon zest and pith in the middle, and a clean, almost neutral finish: it is characterized more by the dryness and the carbonic bite than any specific flavor, although there is some lingering Brett gaminess that lingers on the back of the tongue. Interesting, but not spectacular, and nothing like the Brett Trois IPA—this has too much lemon citrus and pith. If I were to name this beer, I would steal an old school name from Stonyfield Farms Yogurt and call it Lots o’ Lemon.

144b: There is dry mineral, spice, and lemon in the nose, although it is more balanced and harmonious that 144a. Flavors open with slight gaminess and stale cracker, moving into bright lemon zest and candy in the middle, and finishing with a mineral dry bite—a combination of both flavor and mouthfeel. This beer is softer on the palate—although the carbonation feels similar—while the mouthfeel is silkier and smoother. There is a bit of lingering spice and pepper along with the mineral bite, and there is a similar gaminess that hangs around. The Citra hops work better in this version, though; the classic dry mineral cracker character of bruxellensis blends better with the hop flavors, giving the beer more depth of flavor and complexity. Sadly, however, I have no reciprocally clever name for this beer. But it still wins.

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