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Old 12-02-2012, 01:08 AM   #1
pwkblue
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Default Pubstitute Scotch/English Session Porter??

Some time ago I read a beer description for a new Brew Pub in Minnesota...the idea stuck with me: a rich dark session beer with very low ABV. I found the description:
Pubstitute
Pour Decisions Brewing Company, Roseville Minnesota, * Scottish Session ale, 2.9% Abv
Scottish Pubstitute pours a bright mahogany with a billowy head; you'll find notes of chewy English biscuits, figs, plums, dark caramel, toffee with a hint of roast dryness.

Here is my first shot at a clone based on the description...any suggestions:

5 gallon all grain batch

3lb12 oz Golden Promise
12 oz Biscuit Malt
8 oz Special B
8 oz crystal 60
4 oz carapils/dextrine
1 oz british Roasted Barley

.25 oz Bramling Cross @ 60
.75 oz Bramling Cross @ 10

WLP028 Scottish Ale Yeast

should be 1.030 OG 14.9 IBU's and just under 3% ABV

Suggestions? Any worries brewing to such a low ABV?

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Old 12-02-2012, 01:40 AM   #2
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Default flavor notes

I think I caught all the described flavor notes...except maybe Toffee. I don't recall any specialty grain with "toffee" in the description... the special B and crystal 60 might combine to give a toffee note...

I'm going to play with this a little...any suggestions? I've never actually had the beer, but I like the description....and the idea appeals to me.

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Old 12-02-2012, 01:53 AM   #3
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After watching this interview I was interested in this beer/style also. I am interested to see how this works out.

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Old 12-02-2012, 02:49 AM   #4
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Default helpful

perfect...much more information in the video. Doing a little more research that will probably lead to adjustments.

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Old 12-02-2012, 04:14 AM   #5
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I had to delete the youtube interview for some reason so that I could reply. I was wondering how close the Northern Brewer 60 Schilling recipe is to this beer. I threw it into brewtarget and it comes pretty close to the specs.

MASH INGREDIENTS
-- 5 lbs. Maris Otter
-- 1 lbs Briess Caramel 80L

BOIL ADDITIONS & TIMES
-- 1 oz UK Kent Goldings (60 min)

YEAST
-- DRY YEAST (DEFAULT): Danstar Windsor

Ale Yeast Optimum temperature: 60-74F
-- LIQUID YEAST OPTION: Wyeast #1728 Scottish

Ale Yeast. Optimum temperature: 55–70°F.

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Old 12-02-2012, 04:26 AM   #6
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Those low ABV UK beers are not terribly uncommon we just don't see them a lot here. People generally don't want to pay $5/pint for a 3% beer when they could pay the same for a 7% beer.

The big concern is to make sure you are getting enough mouthfeel to avoid making a watery beer. Without all the malt you have in a larger beer you end up with less unfermentables out there. Mashing high will help as well as using some unmalted adjuncts. A little wheat starch in the boil might be a quick and easy method.

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Old 12-02-2012, 04:27 AM   #7
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Default 2 options

seems like there are 2 methods to get a 60 Shilling but both are fairly simple. The traditional method would be a simple grain bill of Maris Otter or Golden Promise with a small amount of roasted barley....and extended boil to create carmelization. The second method is to add Munich malt and/or Crystal malts instead of the boil carmelization...
The recipe you listed would fit the style, but might be on the lighter side of color

I'm going to brew one of these soon...

edit... and yes, all the recipes I've read in the last two hours have very high mash temps 156 and 158

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Old 12-02-2012, 04:46 AM   #8
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I have a batch of Reapers English mild bottle conditioning now and I mashed that at 158. It finished at 1.012 with Nottingham. The hydrometer sample had plenty of malt not thin at all.

If you added 4 oz of roasted barley to the recipe above it would put you at the higher end for the style (16 SRM).

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Old 12-02-2012, 05:19 PM   #9
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Sounds like a good mild to me, lots of biscuit malt, though. Dark milds are a great drink, with some roast, coffee, nuts, toffee and little enough alcohol to carry on all evening. (Don't know about the US, but in the UK the price of a pint can be very related to its alcohol content.)

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Old 12-02-2012, 10:43 PM   #10
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This is probably a guess as I haven't had the beer myself (out of town) but having followed the brewmaster on Shut Up About Barclay Perkins and elsewhere, I suspect it's a rather simple recipe. I am not saying your recipe is wrong or that it would turn out horrible. Not my intent.

My notes suggest its: 94% pale malt (MO or GP or another similar pale), 3% crystal 120L and 3% roasted barley. Probably the keys to the brew is using a small single dose of low AA% hops somewhere earlier or at 60 minutes in a 4 hour boil. That's right, a 4 hour boil. They may not also use the Scottish yeast. You could always email the brewery and see if they open the kimono for you, or, offer some suggestions.

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