ok, this is a style of beer that i can really get excited about, mainly because it involves three of my favorite things in life; history, research and of course, BEER! in this case, a really tasty, historical beer. few things could be cooler, IMO.
i've been really intrigued by the style since reading Martyn Cornell's article in last Jan/Feb's issue of Zymurgy. so, fast forward several months and one of my favorite breweries, Schell's, comes out with a limited release, Stag Series No. 4 Burton Ale. delicious!! i realized then that i needed to brew a beer like this, and when i did, i was going to brew it right.
so, as i normally do when i set myself to a task, i began researching the style on the inter webs. which brought me to one of the best blogs on all things English beer, Shut Up About Barclay Perkins. amazing site, worlds of information for brewers! between that, and Martyn Cornell's Zythophile, i gathered a lot of information... really, too much information, but that's never a bad thing, in my book.
what i gathered is that the Burton's of old were brewed with mainly pale malt, sometimes only pale malt. they were mashed at relatively high temps for a fairly long time, followed by a very long boil in some cases. mainly to help caramelize some of the sugars and create a sweeter end product. hops rates varied, but were generally on the high side. the yeast was generally lower attenuating, again to produce a sweeter beer. the ale was then aged for several months before drinking, being 'dry hopped' for a couple weeks before serving.
i could go into detail about how this style progressed as time went on, but all of that is covered pretty thoroughly in those two blog sites, and i'd just be regurgitating what i read there.
so let's get back to Martyn's recipe in that year old issue of Zymurgy. after a lot of thinking and drinking, i was well off course for KISS and thinking all sorts of things like caramel malt for sweetness and color, brewing sugars for a higher gravity, multiple hops additions for big hops character, etc. had a big, complex recipe idea in my head that would produce a good beer, but something far from what i was hoping to drink. apparently, left to my own devices, i like to make things difficult on myself. not gonna work here, the way these ales were brewed involved simple grain bills, simple procedure and a simple hopping schedule.
so after rereading, and rethinking my idea, i decided to go with something very similar to the recipe in Martyn's article. albeit that i want a slightly bigger beer and a higher FG, i'm definitely planning to KISS with this brew. i'm not set on an exact recipe yet, but my idea is ~97% Optic or Maris Otter malt, 3% pale chocolate. OG in the mid 1.08 range. that's it. mashed at 152-154 for 60 mins, followed by a 90 minute boil. one addition of EKG at 90 minutes to get 150+ IBU (180 as it currently sits in my software). a big pitch of 1318 London Ale III and temps in the mid 60s. followed by an extended aging period, 6+ months before getting a healthy dry hop of EKG for a couple weeks before bottling.
that's about as far as i've gotten with this one as of today. i'm hoping to get a final recipe together soon and brew this in the next couple of weeks. when i get to that point, i'll update my blog and post the recipe. i'm guessing it'll be along the lines of what i posted here in the 'recipes & ingredients' forum.
and Tagged with
- Should I...or shouldn't I...?
- Thinking about a bike
- 2013 Hop garden photo thread
- So who's brewing this weekend?
- Looking for Brew Jedi to help me with experiment
- My Yeast Starter Will Not Start
- Clear beer into fermentor with plate chiller?
- Our first all electric unit
- Reviews on Millar's Barley Mill?
- Excess phenols in Hefeweizen?
- The BEST Zombie films....