Emergency Brew Session – Überschuss!

As mentioned in my last post, I have a problem with my kegging system – I drank all the beer, and didn’t have a new batch on-route.

This isn’t the first time my consumption has exceeded my brewing, but my usual solution – a quickly-made English bitter (ready in as little as 10 days) – was not in the cards as I’m off for two and a half weeks at the cottage (you’re bleeding for me, I know it).

Not  only that, but I had some leftover hops and grain from my last batch – the hops especially need to be used as their shelf-life is not great.  Using a few brew book and the net I cobbled together two recipes that would deplete this store.  The first of these is a real hodge-podge of stuff, that may or may not be a good brew.  Its vaugly formulated on an European-style ale (i.e. an Altbier).  The second, to be brewed when I get back from the cottage, is a more traditional English Bitter.

Todays brew – Überschuss European Ale

Überschuss (German): surplus, excess

More below the fold

My mash setup; 50L cooler and a spot-plate for iodine tests (and a book on the history of the Dark Ages and Renaissance, just in case I have free time…

Mash in-progress – temperature is dead-on 67C!

Heating water for the sparge, big pot is for the boil, laptop’s playing Rush’s new album (and running Beersmith, but lets keep focused on the important stuff).

The hot break – not as bad as it looks.  As you bring the wort to a boil, all the proteins used in the mash to make beer-goodness denature.  At the break these proteins begin to precipitate – critical for making good-tasting clear beer.

End of the boil – 6L evaporated, and the cooling coil sanitized by boiling in wort for 15min.

5 hours later, beers in the fermented and the yeast is added.

When I come home from the cottage it’ll be beer!

The recipe, for better for for worse:

Überschuss European Ale:

Recipe Specifications
Boil Size: 26.10 l
Post Boil Volume: 21.84 l
Batch Size (fermenter): 20.00 l   
Bottling Volume: 19.50 l
Estimated OG: 1.052 SG
Estimated Color: 15.1 SRM
Estimated IBU: 36.3 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 70.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 73.5 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Amt        Name                                     Type          %/IBU
3.50 kg    Pale Malt (2 Row) (2.0 SRM)              Grain         70.7 %
1.00 kg    Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L (60.0 SRM)    Grain         20.2 %
0.23 kg    Aromatic Malt (26.0 SRM)                 Grain         4.6 %
0.23 kg    Wheat, Flaked (1.6 SRM)                  Grain         4.6 %
18.00 g    Cascade [5.50 %] - Boil 90.0 min         Hop           13.7 IBUs
14.17 g    Perle [8.00 %] - Boil 90.0 min           Hop           15.7 IBUs
7.00 g     Hallertauer [4.80 %] - Boil 90.0 min     Hop           4.7 IBUs
1.00 tsp   Irish Moss (Boil 15.0 mins)              Fining        -
7.00 g     Hallertauer [4.80 %] - Boil 15.0 min     Hop           2.2 IBUs
7.00 g     Hallertauer [4.80 %] - Boil 0.0 min      Hop           0.0 IBUs
1.0 pkg    SafBrew Ale (DCL/Fermentis #S-33)       Yeast         -

Mash Schedule
Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
66.7C, 60min, 2.6L/kg infusion ratio
Total Grain Weight: 4.95 kg
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time     
Mash In           Add 13.17 l of water at 72.6 C          66.7 C        60 min        

Sparge: Drain MLT, batch sparge with 2 steps (9.07 l each) of 75.6 C water

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