#46 Festive Pale Ale

Eureka, today a post about a test batch recipe. I have to add first that I am very busy lately and my time for writing new posts is very limited. Sorry for that. I hope to finish the promised posts very soon. And there is yet another matter which has to be taken care of. More about that in a few weeks. But I am really excited about it already… Now back to the original story. My father plans his birthday party for the upcoming summer. And what is a party without some beer, right? So I accepted the challenge to pour some beers there. So, to be sure the beer turns out as expected, I did a test batch first.

Now the question, what is a suitable recipe for a party in the summer? Of course, the beer should be refreshing, easy enjoyable for a lot of different beer drinkers and a decent level of alcohol. A Lager beer seems very appropriate. But since I am not really into Lager beers myself and my experience in brewing such beers is very limited, I decided to go with a Pale Ale with some Cascade and Amarillo hops. By the way, this recipe is not my own but I can’t find the original source anymore.

Recipe: Festive Pale Ale
Numbers: Volume [L] 20 (5.3 gal)
Original gravity 12.2°P
Terminal gravity 2°P
Color Around 4 EBC
ABV 5.5%
Grains: Pilsner Malt (4 EBC) 3.8 kg
Carapils (4 EBC) 0.2 kg
Hops: Saazer (3.2% AA) 50 g and boil for 60 min
Amarillo (10% AA) 12.5 g and boil for 0 min
Amarillo (10% AA) 28 g for dry hopping
Cascade (5.9% AA) 23.7 g for dry hopping
Yeast: #1056 American Ale
Water: Burgdorf Mash: 10 L (2.6 gal), sparge: 16 L (4.2 gal) @78°C (172°F)
Rest: Mash in @66°C (151°F), 60 min @ 72°C (162°F), 10 min @ 78°C (172°F)
Boil: Total 60 min
Fermentation: Primary 12 days @ 20°C (68°F) in a plastic bucket
Secondary 14 days @ 20°C (68°F) in a plastic bucket and add hops for dry hopping
Maturation: Carbonation (CO2 vol) Added 2 L of wort to beer for carbonation
Maturation time 3 weeks

03/03/12: Brew day. Iodine test was negative after resting for one hour. So I proceeded with sparging and boiling. I had 16.5 L after the boiling with a gravity of about 14.5°P. So I added 5.0 L of cold water, transferred the beer into my whirlpool kettle, added the Amarillo hops and stirred the whole wort to get the debris in the center of the kettle. I then bottled 2 L of hot wort into two 1 L bottles for the conditioning step of the beer. Then cooled the wort down to approximately 20°C (68°F).

I then pitched the appropriate amount of an American Ale yeast (Wyeast’s 1056 American Ale) which fermented another beer before. I used my microscope to determine the cell count of the harvested yeast for the right amount.

03/10/12: Racked the beer into the secondary fermenter and added the Cascade and Amarillo hops for dry hopping. Gravity already at 2°P.

03/24/12: Filled up a keg and added 2 L of the wort for carbonation. The keg will carbonate for approximately seven days and then mature for another three weeks before a first tasting takes place. I will post the tasting in another post soon. Stay tuned!

06/28/12: Tasting