Decided it was finally time to brew the Big Red again, hopefully with some better records. Kicked off the brew day in the early afternoon, with a mash temp of ~152 F, which is pretty much where I wanted it.
Here’s the grain bill:
7.75 lbs. Rahr 2-row pale
.5 lbs. Weyermann Caramunich II
.25 lbs. Weyermann Caramel Wheat
.25 lbs. Weyermann Chocolate Rye
Using the new 8-gal pot, and burner, bringing my liquor & sparge water to temp has been reduced so much, makes kicking off a brew session at 1pm not that big a deal. Did have a little blockage during the sparge (which freaked me out, because i’ve had a stuck batch on this system, and it was not fun), but that cleared up pretty quick. Efficiency was right around 75%, which i’m comfortable with on this recipe.
*Note: I’m looking at a better, more effective way to measure efficiency on my brews
Outside of that, boil kicked off as planned. Hop additions are below:
60 min – 1 oz. Willamette
30 min – .75 oz. Willamette
Final – .25 oz. Willamette
Finished up, attached the wort chiller, and off it went. Only took about 20 minutes to bring down to 70 F, which was nice (had a G+ Hangout going on, c’mon!). Pitched my British Ale yeast, and locked her up. OG came in at 1.048, which seems about right for this recipe.
Follow-up note… really need to make sure and take the OG measurement. Too often it get’s late, or I get side-tracked. Not a huge deal, but always nice to know your actual gravity for understanding ABV.
So it’s fermenting away, hopefully another week on primary. Then off to the carboy, with 4oz. of American Oak Chips, soaked on a Zinfandel. A certain vino guru is going to help me pick out a great bottle for this batch…no more skimping!
Thoughts for next time:
1. Switch from Zinfandel to Sangiovese
2. If the kegs are ready, brew 10 gal, and age one of each….Zin & Sangiovese (more to come on that…)
Categories: Home Brewing