It is that time again.Â Beer stockpiles have dropped low enough that action had to be taken.Â The Firehouse Amber Ale was great, but now it is almost gone.Â Both the Belgian Tripel and my barleywine still exist in large enough quantities, but both just seem a little heavy to be drinking this time of year.Â The mead is also in good supply, but, well, that’s mead not beer.Â I am wanting for more beer.
That is where Gritty McDuff comes in.Â The beer that I started a week ago Sunday is called Gritty McDuff’s Best Brown Ale.Â It looks like a good one.Â Really, how could I argue with someone named Gritty McDuff?
I followed the mini-mash method with this beer.Â That means instead of lots of malt extract I used lots of grain and a little malt extract.Â I think it worked better this time.Â Instead of keeping the mash on the stove I put it in the oven.Â Since the oven does not actually have a setting for 150 degrees, I heated it to 170 then turned it off.Â The mash was already at 150 which allowed it to stay pretty much at the right temperature for the assigned 90 minutes.Â For reasons I don’t understand grains will produce the right sugars if kept within a couple degrees of 150.Â More than that destroys the enzymes, less than that doesn’t kick off the right chemical reaction.
Here is the recipe that I followed.Â This was actually very close to the one in the book, with only a couple small exceptions.Â My end result may actually approximate the Best Brown Ale of Gritty McDuff legend.
2.25 lb. Brittish 2-row Pale Malt
6 oz US 60 L Crystal Malt
4 oz Belgian Cara-Munich Malt
3 oz US Chocolate Malt
4 lb. M&F Extra Light Dry Malt Extract
6 oz Malto Dextrin
1 oz. Northern Brewer (6.9 HBU)
1/2 oz Willamette (flavor hop)
1/4 ozÂ East Kent Goldings (flavor hop)
1 tsp Irish Moss
1/2 oz Willamettte (aroma hop)
1/4 oz East Kent Goldings (aroma hop)
Wyeast 1098 British Ale
1 1/4 cup Extra Light Dry Malt Extract
This creation should be ready to drink in another six weeks.Â Tomorrow I will transfer to the secondary fermenter.Â Three weeks after that I will bottle it.Â The potenial alcohol reading before fermentation was 5.1.