Late November Brewing

Finishing up having five days off for Thanksgiving Break I paired up with my friend Brian yesterday to brew some beer.  Brian chose a bit of a different beer to brew, a kind of blend of styles that we hope has characteristics similar to a wheat beer and a smoked porter (though it will not have the darkness of a porter). We’ll call it a Smoked Oatmeal Wheat.  It had been some time (maybe six months) since I last brewed a beer, so it felt good to be smelling malted grains and hops again.

One of the coolest things about this weekends brewing is that Brian and I smoked some of our own grains.  Originally we had just intended to purchase some smoked grains, but our homebrew supplier did not have the variety we were looking for.  Faced with the dilemna we just bought two pounds of unsmoked German Pilsner malt and sought out the use of my roommates smoker to add that woodsmoke flavoring.  Brian jury rigged a grain smoking tray out of some wooden boards and aluminum screening.  Once we had some smoke going we adde dthe grains to the screen and let them sit, making sure to keep the temperature relatively low.  We smoked the grains for about an hour and fifteen minutes stirring every ten minutes or so to make sure that the flavor was evenly distributed.  When done the grains certainly had picked up a nice woodsmoke flavor and a slight toasty textue.

The basic recipe was relatively wheat heavy.  4 lbs Greman Pils (unsmoked), 5 lbs American Wheat, 1 lb American Munich (light), 1 lb Canadian Honey Malt, 1 lb Rolled Oats, and 2 lbs Smoked German Pils.  The hop schedule was1 oz Hallertau and 1 oz Saaz at 60 min, 2 ox hallertau and 2 oz Saaz at 20 min, and about 1 oz Hallertau, 1.5 oz Saaz, and 1.3 oz Sorachi Ace at flame off.  The Sorachi Ace as an aroma hopping was a last minute decision as we had miscalculated our amounts of Hallertau and Saaz.  However, the Sorachi Ace’s citrus notes seemed to work with the overall beer characteristic.  Biran piched German Ale yeast for his batch and I pitched Belgian Witbier for mine. The differend yeasts will likely result in slightly differing final flavors.

Hopefully the beer will be done, bottled, and ready for drinking within a month and a half or so.  I’ll let you know how it comes out then.

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~ by Nathaniel on November 29, 2010.

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