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Old 11-28-2012, 02:41 AM   #1
zachattack
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Default Imperial rye pumpkin?

Hey everyone,

So a friend and I are looking to brew something fairly strong/ridiculous around Christmas to put away until next year. We have a pumpkin all grain kit from Midwest, and the plan is to add to it to make an Imperial Rye Pumpkin ale. The idea is to aim for something in the neighborhood of 11% abv, include plenty of rye malt in the grain bill, then age it on oak cubes soaked in a healthy portion of Bulliet rye whiskey.

Having sipped plenty of rye whiskey while eating pumpkin pie, I know the flavors are great together, I'm just not sure how to pull it off. I have my process more or less nailed down, but recipe formulation isn't my strongest skill so I'd love some feedback on this first draft.

I brew on a kitchen stove, I can easily bring 7 gallons to a boil but I only boil off around 0.5 gal/hour. So I'm planning a 2 hour boil to help concentrate things. For this gigantic grain bill I'm maxing out my 10 gallon mash tun at a 1.25 qt/lb ratio, I can add more grain but I'd need to mash thinner. I've seen a pretty consistent mash efficiency of 80-82% for "normal" OG batches, but the few high OG beers I've done have only been 65-70%. I put in a 64% efficiency for this batch, for a 1.098 OG assuming ~5.75 gallons in the fermenter.

The Midwest grainbill is already mixed, so I'm stuck with the US 2 row, carapils, and C40. Everything else is up for grabs.

Some specific questions:

1) Is that too much rye malt? I'd love a very pronounced rye flavor, but I know I'll also get a lot from the whiskey.

2) I really can't mash any more grain with my setup, which is why I included the brown sugar in the boil to boost OG. Do you think this will dry it out too much? I can always use DME instead, and I can change the mash temperature. I know the rye whiskey is pretty damn dry...

3) Is 1 lb of rice hulls enough for 4 lbs of canned pumpkin and the rye malt? Should I try to cram more in there? I'd have to decrease the grain bill a little bit if that's the case. I fly sparge with a false bottom, and my last beer (weizenbock) I had no runoff problems with 10 lbs wheat malt with only a half lb of the hulls.

4) I didn't include any spices in this recipe, but I'm planning to put in maybe 2-3 teaspoons of homemade pumpkin pie spice at flameout. I know after 10 months of aging a lot of the spice will fade so I think that should be a good amount, any advice there? The last pumpkin ale I made had 1 tsp and that was an OK amount when the beer was fresh.

Thanks in advance! I like the concept of this beer and I think it'll be great for next Thanksgiving.


Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Boil Size: 7.00 gal
Post Boil Volume: 6.00 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.77 gal
Bottling Volume: 5.77 gal
Estimated OG: 1.098 SG
Estimated Color: 12.7 SRM
Estimated IBU: 27.5 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 64.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 64.0 %
Boil Time: 120 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
4 lbs Pumpkin (3.0 SRM) Adjunct 1 14.5 %
1 lbs Rice Hulls (0.0 SRM) Adjunct 2 3.6 %
9 lbs Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 3 32.7 %
4 lbs Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 4 14.5 %
4 lbs Rye Malt (4.7 SRM) Grain 5 14.5 %
2 lbs Munich Malt (9.0 SRM) Grain 6 7.3 %
8.0 oz Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 7 1.8 %
8.0 oz Caramel/Crystal Malt - 10L (10.0 SRM) Grain 8 1.8 %
8.0 oz Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L (60.0 SRM) Grain 9 1.8 %
0.50 oz Magnum [14.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min Hop 10 27.5 IBUs
1.00 tsp Irish Moss (Boil 10.0 mins) Fining 11 -
2.0 pkg Safale American (DCL/Fermentis #US-05) Yeast 12 -
2 lbs Brown Sugar, Light (8.0 SRM) Sugar 13 7.3 %


Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, No Mash Out
Total Grain Weight: 27 lbs 8.0 oz
----------------------------
Name Description Step Temperat Step Time
Mash In Add 31.88 qt of water at 163.7 F 152.0 F 75 min

Sparge: Fly sparge with 2.34 gal water at 168.0 F
Notes:
------


Created with BeerSmith 2 - http://www.beersmith.com
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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Old 11-28-2012, 09:08 AM   #2
rcsoccer
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I would be careful with the pumpkin. The enzymes in the grain will convert the starches in the pumpkin to very simple sugars that the yeast will rip through! And, you will get an incredibly stuck sparge. That's the right amount of pumpkin, but I would add it to the top of your grain bed after 60 mins of mashing, then mash for another 15 mins. This will help filter all of the pumpkin and hopefully prevent a stuck sparge. Also, you won't get that much flavor from the pumpkin. Most of the flavor in pumpkin ales comes from the spices, so add about 3 tsp of pumpkin pies spice to the secondary for around 2-3 weeks. It might dissipate after awhile, but maybe not.

The brown sugar might dry it out, but I added brown sugar to mine and it was fine. Also, that's a good amount of Rye. Most people associate the spiciness of rye bread to the rye, but it's actually from the carraway seeds in the bread. That amount is perfect for a big beer like this.

Sounds like a pretty intense beer!

Good luck!

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Old 11-28-2012, 09:46 AM   #3
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As a matter of individual taste I don't see the appeal of a rye pumpkin beer with an OG close to 1.100, I will say this: you're not in any danger of a stuck sparge with all those grains and a pound of rice hulls.

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Old 11-28-2012, 01:01 PM   #4
zachattack
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Thanks for the feedback so far!

Quote:
Originally Posted by bigbeergeek View Post
As a matter of individual taste I don't see the appeal of a rye pumpkin beer with an OG close to 1.100, I will say this: you're not in any danger of a stuck sparge with all those grains and a pound of rice hulls.
I realize this is an experiment, but it's the first time I've really experimented with a recipe.

Have you ever had Avery Rumpkin? Imperial pumpkin ale aged in rum barrels. It's a sipper for sure, but I personally think it's an incredible beer. Along the same lines, over Thanksgiving I had some pumpkin pie made with Captain Morgan. That was definitely tasty.

I've paired pumpkin pie with bourbon and rye (in the whipped cream and just in a glass next to it) and I think the rye-pumpkin combo can't be beat. Rye whiskey has a back-of-the-throat, super dry spiciness that really cuts through the sweetness and creaminess of the pie, and I'm trying to capture that here. I can understand if that doesn't appeal to you, but it's a flavor combination that I love.
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Old 12-05-2012, 04:32 PM   #5
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Does anyone else have an opinion? I'm not brewing this for a couple weeks but I'm thinking about it a lot!

If I have a 1.1 OG beer, can it finish too dry with 2 lbs of sugar? Should I switch the sugar to DME? What temp should I mash at?

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Old 12-05-2012, 11:24 PM   #6
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Dial the sugar back to around 1.5 lbs, mash low (145-150). No DME necessary.

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