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Old 10-30-2007, 04:37 AM   #1
mrfocus
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Default Holiday Ale

Here is what I have come up with in BeerSmith:

BeerSmith Recipe Printout - www.beersmith.com
Recipe: Christmas Belgian Dark Strong Ale
Brewer: Ross Wallbridge
Asst Brewer:
Style: Belgian Dark Strong Ale
TYPE: Extract
Taste: (35,0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 6,00 gal
Boil Size: 3,57 gal
Estimated OG: 1,101 SG
Estimated Color: 17,1 SRM
Estimated IBU: 10,1 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: - %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
8,80 lb Pale Liquid Extract [Boil for 15 min] Extract 42,51 %
1,00 lb Biscuit Malt (23,0 SRM) Grain 4,83 %
1,00 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2,0 SRM) Grain 4,83 %
1,00 lb Munich Malt (9,0 SRM) Grain 4,83 %
1,00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2,0 SRM) Grain 4,83 %
1,00 lb Victory Malt (25,0 SRM) Grain 4,83 %
0,88 oz Tettnang [3,60 %] (60 min) Hops 7,7 IBU
0,50 tsp Cinnamon Powder (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,13 tsp Cloves (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,25 tsp Cocoa (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,25 tsp Ginger (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,13 tsp Nutmeg (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
4,40 lb Candi Sugar, Clear (0,5 SRM) Sugar 21,26 %
1,50 lb Honey (1,0 SRM) Sugar 7,25 %
1,00 lb Candi Sugar, Amber (75,0 SRM) Sugar 4,83 %
1 Pkgs SafBrew Specialty Ale (DCL Yeast #T-58) Yeast-Ale


Mash Schedule: None
Total Grain Weight: 10,00 lb
----------------------------
Steep grains as desired (30-60 minutes)

I'm aiming for something like a N'Ice Chouffe and even though I know you guys can't tell me that this beer will be great, I would like to know from you knowledgeable people if it is well-balanced.

1. Are all those specialty grains necessary, as I will only be steeping them?
2. Does the Cara-Pils help head retention even when not mashed and sparged?
3. I added 2 row as I read that Cara-Pils needs it for something or other, comment.
4. If I'm steeping the grains, will the biscuity tastes from Victory and Biscuit malt be quite noticeable? I'm not trying to go for biscuity, but rather trying to add body (as I'm using sugar).

I know I am using a lot of sugars (33%), but I was quite inspired by learning how to make my own candi sugar from Flanagan and Orfy.
5. How do you think using that much sugar will affect the body of the beer.

I think that's all for now. I'm aiming to brew it this weekend or next, ready just in time for Christmas and the end of the semester at university.

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MOD EDIT: Sig only takes up 6 lines now. Fermenting: Apple cider x 2, Doppelbock, Red, Oatmeal Stout, West Coast IPA x 2
Bottle conditioning: RIS
Keg conditioning: La Fin du Monde clone
On tap: Maudite clone, Double Munchen, Oktoberfeast, Oktoberfest Pilsner
Planning: Brewed in 2011: 22 (2010: 15, 2009: 29, 2008: 21, 2007: 1)
Wine made in 2010: 6 kits (2009: 19, 2008: 30)
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Old 10-30-2007, 04:58 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrfocus
1. Are all those specialty grains necessary, as I will only be steeping them?
2. Does the Cara-Pils help head retention even when not mashed and sparged?
3. I added 2 row as I read that Cara-Pils needs it for something or other, comment.
4. If I'm steeping the grains, will the biscuity tastes from Victory and Biscuit malt be quite noticeable? I'm not trying to go for biscuity, but rather trying to add body (as I'm using sugar).

I know I am using a lot of sugars (33%), but I was quite inspired by learning how to make my own candi sugar from Flanagan and Orfy.
5. How do you think using that much sugar will affect the body of the beer.

I think that's all for now. I'm aiming to brew it this weekend or next, ready just in time for Christmas and the end of the semester at university.
1. Necessary? Tasty? Yes...maybe....it is kind of up to you as far as what you want to put in. This looks like a spice ale, right? If so, there is no need for all those specialty grains, as you are really going for the spices to be the flavor, not the specialty grains. Think of Munich as Octoberfest beers and Victory as in the "nuttyness" flavor of nut browns. That is a very general rule, but may help you get started.

2. Yes, absolutely. I added Carapils to all my extract brews to help with mouthfeel and head retention. Works great!

3. If you are steeping, no need for 2 row. The extract will act as the 2-row you mentioned. Leave it out. It will not convert when steeped anyways.

4. If you are trying to add bofy, no need for either of these. They are flavor profiles and I think they taste good, but again, it is up to you.

5. Sorry...not a big Belgium fan. Never used Candi sugar to brew. I would say stick to the malt extract and specialty grains for this brew then doa belgium brew to use the sugar on...


Hope I helped and here is a great link for figuring out grains in the future....

http://www.brewsupplies.com/grain_profiles.htm
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Old 10-30-2007, 05:06 AM   #3
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I think that's too much sugar, as a result the beer might be watery and thin. Most Belgian brewers use about 10% sugar, the most I have seen is 20%, but 33% might bee a little too much.
You only get 20% utilization from CaraPils by steeping it, so it will add body but not much. However this is a very strong beer, you don't really need to add it.
The recipe seems very complicated. That's great, it might be an amazing beer, but on the other hand it could become muddy and too complex. For example you are using biscuit and victory malt, these malts are somewhat similar so you don't need them both.

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Old 10-30-2007, 05:10 AM   #4
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Wow, thanks for the quick replies!!!

This would be my second brew, and I would like to make something nice for Christmas, as a break will be well merited after a hard first semester...

So, let's say I ditch the 2 row, biscuit, munich and victory...
How much Cara-Pils is required to add the extra head retention? I remember reading maximum 5%, is that correct? What about if it's steeped?
With just the LME and Cara-Pils, would the beer have any body?

This is still in the planning phases, so the amount of Candi sugar may change (mostly because 4.4lbs = 2kg is what you buy in the store, so no need to mesure as I don't have a scale yet).

Thanks,

mrfocus

__________________
MOD EDIT: Sig only takes up 6 lines now. Fermenting: Apple cider x 2, Doppelbock, Red, Oatmeal Stout, West Coast IPA x 2
Bottle conditioning: RIS
Keg conditioning: La Fin du Monde clone
On tap: Maudite clone, Double Munchen, Oktoberfeast, Oktoberfest Pilsner
Planning: Brewed in 2011: 22 (2010: 15, 2009: 29, 2008: 21, 2007: 1)
Wine made in 2010: 6 kits (2009: 19, 2008: 30)
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Old 10-30-2007, 05:39 AM   #5
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MrFocus, your recipe needs some focus! It's one of those "everything but the kitchen sink" recipes that a lot of us tend to try when we're new to the hobby. I recommend something a little less complex for your second brew. However, I'll critique the recipe, since you asked.

It's horribly imbalanced! 7 IBUs for something that's easily 1.100 in OG...that's gonna be crazy sweet, but probably not very malty since you're using so much sugar. You need to add about 3 times the bittering hops (or more) to get anywhere close to balance.

As for the grain bill:
Keep the carapils, it'll help slightly with head retention and body.
Steeping 2-row will do nothing for your beer - it needs to be mashed.
A bit of Munich will be ok. It should generally be mashed, but you can steep it for a touch of color and flavor.
Keep the biscuit, skip the Victory. Biscuit is more intense in flavor and will work better when steeping. Since this is the only really flavorful malt you're using so far, keep it. It'll add some interest.
What is adding color and flavor to this beer? It should be dark and malty, and you have nothing but very light grains and extract plus tons of sugar. Add some roasted grain (chocolate malt, perhaps) to achieve a bit of maltiness and the proper color for the style.

Pick a sugar, one sugar, and use it as 10% of your total fermentables. That much candi sugar plus honey is going to result in a very dry beer with little flavor. Honey ferments very completely, so you won't really get much flavor out of it, especially with all those spices.

The spice amounts seem reasonable, but I'm not sure that they're typical of the style you're after. It's more of a winter warmer than a Belgian dark, I think.

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Old 10-30-2007, 05:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri_Rage
The spice amounts seem reasonable, but I'm not sure that they're typical of the style you're after. It's more of a winter warmer than a Belgian dark, I think.
I'm basically going after a christmas beer based on the Belgian Dark Strong Ale.

BJCP has SRM between 15 and 20 and IBU between 15 and 30.

So if I want to add less Candi sugar, I should up the amount of malt I have? I think I will add some dark LME and a bit more light LME.

I am rethinking it now and will post an updated recipe tomorrow, but keep the suggestions coming.

Thanks,

mrfocus
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MOD EDIT: Sig only takes up 6 lines now. Fermenting: Apple cider x 2, Doppelbock, Red, Oatmeal Stout, West Coast IPA x 2
Bottle conditioning: RIS
Keg conditioning: La Fin du Monde clone
On tap: Maudite clone, Double Munchen, Oktoberfeast, Oktoberfest Pilsner
Planning: Brewed in 2011: 22 (2010: 15, 2009: 29, 2008: 21, 2007: 1)
Wine made in 2010: 6 kits (2009: 19, 2008: 30)

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Old 10-30-2007, 06:07 AM   #7
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I do have to retract one of my suggestions - chocolate malt is probably out of place. I read up on the style, and it seems that dark candi sugar should add most of the color. Below is a VERY simple recipe that would put you in the ballpark for the style. Ferment it warm to get a strong ester profile. To me, this doesn't sound like a style that really lends itself to spicing the way you suggest. Now, if you use a clean strain of ale yeast and ferment cool, you might have some room for the spices.

Here's the recipe:

10 lbs Light DME
3 lbs Munich (20L)
.5 lb Amber Candi Sugar
.25 lb Dark Candi Sugar
2.5 oz Tettnang (60 mins)
Wyeast 1762 Belgian Abbey II

1.096 SG
28 IBU
20 SRM

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Old 10-30-2007, 06:19 AM   #8
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Ok here is an updated version:

BeerSmith Recipe Printout - www.beersmith.com
Recipe: Christmas Belgian Dark Strong Ale 2
Brewer: Ross Wallbridge
Asst Brewer:
Style: Belgian Dark Strong Ale
TYPE: Extract
Taste: (35,0)

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size: 6,00 gal
Boil Size: 3,57 gal
Estimated OG: 1,101 SG
Estimated Color: 15,3 SRM
Estimated IBU: 27,5 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: - %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amount Item Type % or IBU
13,20 lb Pale Liquid Extract [Boil for 15 min] Extract 68,75 %
1,00 lb Biscuit Malt (23,0 SRM) Grain 5,21 %
1,00 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2,0 SRM) Grain 5,21 %
1,00 lb Munich Malt (9,0 SRM) Grain 5,21 %
0,88 oz Galena [13,00 %] (30 min) Hops 13,6 IBU
0,88 oz Tettnang [3,60 %] (20 min) Hops 2,5 IBU
0,88 oz Styrian Goldings [4,20 %] (20 min) Hops 2,9 IBU
0,50 tsp Cinnamon Powder (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,13 tsp Cloves (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,25 tsp Cocoa (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,25 tsp Ginger (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
0,13 tsp Nutmeg (Boil 5,0 min) Misc
2,50 lb Candi Sugar, Clear (0,5 SRM) Sugar 13,02 %
0,50 lb Candi Sugar, Amber (75,0 SRM) Sugar 2,60 %
1 Pkgs SafBrew Specialty Ale (DCL Yeast #T-58) Yeast-Ale


Mash Schedule: None
Total Grain Weight: 10,00 lb
----------------------------
Steep grains as desired (30-60 minutes)


Total of three pounds candi sugar, or 15% of fermentables.

Yuri, the BJCP mentions that spices normally don't fit with this type of beer, that's why I'm just using it as guidelines. They also mention that there should be a complex grain bill... Well, I guess I'll find another style that fits this ale more.

Just wondering, what kind of taste Galena adds (other than bitter ).

I feel like were getting there thanks

mrfocus

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MOD EDIT: Sig only takes up 6 lines now. Fermenting: Apple cider x 2, Doppelbock, Red, Oatmeal Stout, West Coast IPA x 2
Bottle conditioning: RIS
Keg conditioning: La Fin du Monde clone
On tap: Maudite clone, Double Munchen, Oktoberfeast, Oktoberfest Pilsner
Planning: Brewed in 2011: 22 (2010: 15, 2009: 29, 2008: 21, 2007: 1)
Wine made in 2010: 6 kits (2009: 19, 2008: 30)
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Old 11-04-2007, 10:11 PM   #9
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Ok so this thread almost vanished, but I'm still planning on brewing it on the 9th or 10th of November...

Anyone have some suggestions yet?

Thanks,

mrfocus

__________________
MOD EDIT: Sig only takes up 6 lines now. Fermenting: Apple cider x 2, Doppelbock, Red, Oatmeal Stout, West Coast IPA x 2
Bottle conditioning: RIS
Keg conditioning: La Fin du Monde clone
On tap: Maudite clone, Double Munchen, Oktoberfeast, Oktoberfest Pilsner
Planning: Brewed in 2011: 22 (2010: 15, 2009: 29, 2008: 21, 2007: 1)
Wine made in 2010: 6 kits (2009: 19, 2008: 30)
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Old 05-19-2008, 06:41 PM   #10
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Just to update. The brew went well (hehe, the 17th of November). It was bottled December 31st, and has been in bottles for 4.5 months. At about 1.5 months old it tasted like liquid banana bread, most likely because of the very strong green beer taste plus the spices. At about 4 months old, the green beer taste has vanished, to be replaced by a very strong alcohol taste. I will taste this at 6 months, and will update you guys on the taste. You may be able to brew it in June or July, if you believe it might be decent, and have it ready for Christmas 2008!

__________________
MOD EDIT: Sig only takes up 6 lines now. Fermenting: Apple cider x 2, Doppelbock, Red, Oatmeal Stout, West Coast IPA x 2
Bottle conditioning: RIS
Keg conditioning: La Fin du Monde clone
On tap: Maudite clone, Double Munchen, Oktoberfeast, Oktoberfest Pilsner
Planning: Brewed in 2011: 22 (2010: 15, 2009: 29, 2008: 21, 2007: 1)
Wine made in 2010: 6 kits (2009: 19, 2008: 30)
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