Course correction and some tasting notes

Sometimes browsing home brew supply websites at work can lead to some inspiration. My plan with the currently fermenting Saison was to age it on local blackberries for 6 weeks or so, however I saw something on my website that lead me to rethink that beer entirely. Firstly, in a completely unoriginal and cliched move, Wyeast 3724 stuck at 1.025. I brought it up to the main house, placed the carboy in a bottling bucket and wrapped it in a heavy duvet with the heating belt on, which got it moving again. After a couple days it was just below 1.020, and smelled incredible, like peaches and pineapples. I decided to jump the gun and pitch Orval dregs from just a single bottle and take it back to the cellar. I realized this was going to slow the production of this beer down, probably by a couple of months, but I was willing to wait because I think it’s going to be something really special. Then I noticed our little euro freezer was already running out of space, and with three pounds of blackberries in a holding pattern, I might need to rethink things. Continue reading Course correction and some tasting notes

Like Just An Amber Ale

I was discussing beer with another ex-pat colleague last year, he’s in his late 40’s or early 50’s, and a solid Midwestern kind of guy. He had just been back to the States to visit family and asked me “Is it even possible to get like just an ‘amber ale’ anymore?” I asked him if it meant like the one’s he drank in the late 90’s, and he said that’s exactly what he meant. It’s true that the craft beer landscape is pretty unrecognizable compared to the micro-brewery boom and crash of the late 90’s, when I got into beer in college. While I became a hop-head pretty much right from the get-go I think I understood what he was talking about.

This beer is inspired by Mark, my American colleague. I am brewing it to help overcome my fear of crystal malt and because I think it’s cool to brew something I normally wouldn’t even think twice about. I still utilized some newer school techniques like a small hop stand, but I will forgo a dryhop of any kind because I want this to be distinctly an amber, and not just a darker coloured pale ale.  Continue reading Like Just An Amber Ale

Blackberry Saison – Heimdall’s Garde

I knew I wanted to brew a fruit saison as soon as possible after Philadelphia homebrewer/homebrew blogger Ed Coffey posted this peach saison to the homebrewing subreddit. Just the photo made my mouth water. Unfortunately here in Denmark peaches are imported from far off lands, and not great.  However, many brewing-appropriate fruits grow in an almost weed-like fashion in the very neighbourhood I now live in.  This beer will be aged on blackberries grown in my good friend’s backyard, on a street named for the Norse god Heimdallr, with a significant amount of rye and wheat in the grist, and fermentation will be finished with brett from a bottle of Orval. Special thanks to Ed Coffee who offered a lot of helpful advice for this beer.

Continue reading Blackberry Saison – Heimdall’s Garde