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Old 03-24-2010, 04:16 AM   #1
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Default My ringwood doesn't taste like their ringwood

First, let me start straight and to the point: Does anyone have any experience cloning Alan Pugsley's beers, such as shipyard, Seadog, Geary's, etc?

I've spent alot of time researching ringwood breweries and their unique yeast. I love the beers commercially brewed with this yeast. The aroma dominates the beer, with a unique ester and nice complementing diacetyl. The problem is that my beer brewed with this yeast lacks any of the hallmark characteristics. The flavor is very malt forward and tasty, so I can't complain too much. But I'm not getting the unique aroma.

I made a 1.060 pale ale with 95% MO and 5% crystal and special roast. I fermented at 64F and gradually raised it to 70F for a diacetyl rest for another week until bottling three weeks after pitching. I open fermented by resting a lid on the bucket until krausen fell. It attenuated 74%. Did the D-rest clean it up too much or is Wyeast 1187 dramatically different than the Yeast used at those breweries?

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Old 03-24-2010, 03:27 PM   #2
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Read...
http://www.epinions.com/review/Shipy...nt_20413714052

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Old 03-24-2010, 03:34 PM   #3
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I remember reading that. Since it is almost ten years old I assumed (hoped) he was talking about WLP 005 not being the same strain. Maybe wyeast 1187 is closer and newer? Anyway, I can see how thousands of repitchings cause mutations that adapt to his brewery. I guess I'm gonna have to keep repitching and playing with temps and duration of the ferment. I wonder if someone has a tried-and-true approach though.

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Old 03-24-2010, 06:31 PM   #4
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Well I'm specifically trying for an Old Thumper clone in two weeks with 1187 so maybe then I can give some feedback. From what I've read (and is mentioned a little in that article) is that part of their original brew system was quick turnaround that was as much a cause of their diacetyl levels as the yeast because others use some form of ringwood without that aspect. I am going to ferment it at 68, watch it daily and as soon as the gravity stops moving keg/bottle it. I think cold crashing it would be better and then let it sit cold for a bit, but I don't have anywhere my 13 gallon fermenter can fit for those low temps.

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Old 03-24-2010, 07:26 PM   #5
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The standard procedure for using 1187 in the early days of brewpubs here in CO was the ferment at 20 C for as long as it took to get the beer to read the same gravity 2 days in a row.

Then drop the temp to 4 C overnight.

Get the beer off the yeast, so you could crop it (we were using "open" fermenters). We transferred the beer to a conditioning tank and held it at 4 C for a few more days/weeks until the serving tank opened up.

I believe this would be fairly similar to what the Pugsley pubs were doing.

We would buy the yeast directly from the National Collection of Yeast Cultures in the UK. I would hope that the Wyeast strain 1187 came from the same place as NCYC1187.

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Old 03-24-2010, 08:10 PM   #6
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That's what I figured, I just can't find any place to drop the temp on my 10 gallons batches. I can only beg SWMBO for so many things at once.

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Old 03-24-2010, 08:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne1 View Post
The standard procedure for using 1187 in the early days of brewpubs here in CO was the ferment at 20 C for as long as it took to get the beer to read the same gravity 2 days in a row.

Then drop the temp to 4 C overnight.

Get the beer off the yeast, so you could crop it (we were using "open" fermenters). We transferred the beer to a conditioning tank and held it at 4 C for a few more days/weeks until the serving tank opened up.

I believe this would be fairly similar to what the Pugsley pubs were doing.

We would buy the yeast directly from the National Collection of Yeast Cultures in the UK. I would hope that the Wyeast strain 1187 came from the same place as NCYC1187.
Interesting. I listened to an interview with him a while back (BN Sunday Session maybe?) where he mentioned the process of fermenting their blonde ale. He said something to the effect of all of their beers have differing detectable levels of ringwood character and that some can come out very clean. I assume he let the yeast clean it up in that Blonde.

So if I don't have anything available to me below 64F, do you think I should transfer after FG is reached and keep it at 64F. I can't cold crash it but perhaps the early transfer can still keep the character? Funny thing is when I sampled it right after FG was reached, I didn't notice any ringwood like character, albeit green as hell.
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Old 03-25-2010, 12:22 AM   #8
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I have found that when Ringwood gets a chance to have a nice, long D-rest at higher temps (68-70+), it cleans up after itself really well. I have been brewing with this yeast a lot lately and it always amazes me how clean a beer you can get with something that people love to tout as the "butter" yeast.

However, if you want to keep most of that diacetyl quality, you should ferment it normally but once primary fermentation is done transfer it off the yeast into a cold secondary asap. Maybe even regulate the temp with some water and ice bottles until ready to bottle or keg. I did something similar with my beast bitter clone and was left with a beer that tasted more like shipyard. I think its getting that perfect mix of diacetyl, ester, and malt that's most difficult about this yeast.

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Old 03-25-2010, 01:02 AM   #9
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Underpitching will certainly bring out more of the diacytel.

When used in the manner I described earlier, I feel 1187 is VERY clean with just a touch more character than 1056.

Our standard pitching rate was a pound of thick slurry per barrel, or roughly 0.5 oz per gallon. Reducing the amount of yeast by half will give you something like Butter Beer.

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Old 03-25-2010, 01:42 AM   #10
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All great points guys thanks. I think the underpitching is most accessible to me now. I can't regulate temps beyond either low 60s or 70. So for a 1.060 beer, maybe try making a 400-500ml starter? This weekend I'll be repitching from two week old washed yeast for an ipa. Maybe I'll make a 500ml starter and ferment it colder and see what happens.

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