Hey guys! Many months ago I posted a thread on hear about making a medieval style beer that would capture the essences of Winterfell from Game of Thrones.
When I made that thread I was so green that I pissed grass, with regards to brewing, and couldn't hit a target OG if it smacked me in the ***! Since I have been on here though and have been consulting with you guys my brewing has gotten much more consistent, and I now know at least how much grain to buy!
Beer Stuff (the good part):
From the Original Thread from which this beer was forged.
This is what we tried to captured here:
What I am wanting to capture is an Ale that you could imagine being drank in a Norther European Castle at a feast or cold night. I would imagine something that wouldn't be dark like an RIS, but not pale like a whit either. Something that would have a rustic flavor probably a bit cloudy with a big thick head that could be served at cellar temp with oak notes from being stored in a barrel. Imagine a beer that would be made from the fall harvest before a hard winter hit.
This is what we came up with:
Weyermann Munich Type II-----9 lbs, 0 oz
Weyermann Rye Malt-------------1 lbs, 8 oz
Briess White Wheat---------------1 lbs, 8 oz
Thomas Fawcett Oat Malt--------1 lbs, 0 oz
Simpsons Peated Malt-------------0 lbs, 8 oz
Columbus Pelletts------------------.5 oz @ 60 mins
Nugget Pellets ----------------------.5 oz @ 60 mins
Oak Chips, Toasted-----------------2 oz ~2 weeks
Wyeast Labs Bier de Garde Yeast
The Brew Day (stove fires might or might not have been involved):
I am going to start off by saying that the actual brewing process did not go as well as I would have liked to say the least.
As we were boiling water to mash with, I noticed a more orange than normal glow coming up from under the water pot and noticed that indeed that a grease fire had started inside of the drip pan! Luckily, I was able to put it out with a slurry of flour and water before it got out of hand, but it wasn't a good omen "winter was coming".
When I started my mash (really thick in 5 gallon tun), I had over shot the initial mash temperature, so I added some ice to the tun and tried to stir it all together to reach some sort of average temperature. However, the thickness of the mash made it difficult, and on advice from a sibling, I was told that in the tun, it should reach an average temp soon between the hot and cold spots.
I figured, nuclear engineering major, he has taken two classes of thermo-dynamics right? I figured it should work out all right, well, after 30 minutes we did hit an average temp in the mash, but it was at (135 :0)! Not very conducive to thick heady beer for the Lord of Winterfell to drink!
So, we had a bit of stroke of inspiration from a German Decoation mash. We drained out 2 gallons of the wort and 1/3 of the grain and placed it on the stove (which we had cleaned very well to stop more grease fires!) and brought it to a boil for a few minutes before mixing it back into the mash tun and mixing everything together. After we did this, we hit around 157 on the temp and let it mash for an additional hour.
Everything after that point went pretty much as you would normally expect, we boiled the wort for two hours (one hour to reduce volume to make room for starter, another hour for the hops), we added some whirlock with about 15 minutes left and got the wort nice and chilled before adding our 1/2 gallon starter.
The thing that impressed me the most was that even after all of the hickups we had during this brew we still hit our target gravity at 1.068. We had airlock activity within hours and because of the fermcap we were able to fill the carboy nearly to top and have no blow out or clogged airlock!
I plan on removing the oak chips I added in a hop-sock in about 2 weeks, before racking the beer to secondary so I can wash and keep the yeast for later!
I hope to be able to have this beer ready before season 2 comes out on blue ray for my Game of Thrones Marathon viewing!