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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Recipes/Ingredients > Jalisco Pils - AG - Brewin' With Agave
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Old 05-13-2009, 08:06 PM   #1
TrojanMan
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Default Jalisco Pils - AG - Brewin' With Agave

I'll be brewing this up tonight and I just wanted to toss it up here and see what everybody thinks. Recipe first, then I'll get into some finer points.

10 lb. Breiss 2-row
1.5 lb. Agave nectar (raw)
1.25 oz. Willamette 4.5% - 60min.
1 oz. Amarillo - 8.5% - 5min.

3 oz. American oak cubes, medium toast
3-4 ounces Anejo tequila (I used Herradura)

Saflager S-23

Appx. 20-25 IBU; OG: appx. 1.050


Single step infusion mash. Strike grain with 2 3/4 gal. water at 172*F. Mash should stabilize between 150-152*F. Rest 1 hour. Sparge with 4 gallons starting at 180*F (it'll drop a bit over the ~20 minutes).

Boil 60 minutes with the Willamette, use the Amarillo for flavor & aroma. I have whole leaf hops for both, so feel free to cut the hop rate down a bit if using pellets.

At flame-out, start chilling the wort. When you reach 100-110*F, add the agave nectar. I'm using raw nectar here which is processed at a temperature below 118*F. To preserve the natural enzymes and nutrients, we don't want to go over that temperature. So add the sugar while chilling.

I'm pitching about 1.25 pints of active starter (3 oz. DME, pinch of hops in 2 pints water, boil 20 minutes, cool, add yeast, let sit 24 hours).

Note on temp: The S-23 will ferment clean at warmer temps, but delivers better phenols at around 45-55*F. My basement is appx. 65*F this time of year, so I'll be starting fermentation at that temp and then cooling it down a bit by immersing the carboy in a water bath with some ice and wrapping it in a damp towel to let evaporative cooling take it down a few degrees.

During primary fermentation, I'm soaking the oak cubes in the tequila. You'll get the tequila back (now with more oak!) so feel free to use your top-shelf stuff. I'm using a pint Mason jar, but anything with a lid (so it doesn't evaporate) will work fine. It took about 3-4 ounces just to cover the cubes for me.

After primary fermentation, rack over to a keg and add your oak cubes to the keg (keep the tequila for yourself). I'm going to force-carb this later, but I'm going to give it a lagering period in the keg for now, so just a purge/blanket of CO2 is all I'll give it until appx. 6 weeks of aging, then I'll carb up.



I'm not certain exactly how this is going to pan out, but I'm hoping for a citrusy, crisp EuroLager with some nice roasty Anejo flavors and some sharp notes from the sugar. Should be a perfect Summertime sipper.

Thoughts are welcome.


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Old 05-14-2009, 12:03 AM   #2
mbird
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I don't want to squelch your idea but the last time I had raw Agave juice the flavor reminded me of a cross between tooth decay and burning hair. Why are you using it in this recipe? I think I would consider using some specialty grains in addition to the 2-row. Just my 2cents.
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Old 06-14-2009, 06:28 PM   #3
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Just an update:

The agave fermented out a lot cleaner than I'd expected. There's a little bit of spiciness, maybe a little woody, allspice and kinda tree-barkishness if that makes sense. Overall it's very clean once you get a ways into the lagering period. The S-23, you've got to give it time and let it do its thing.

I took 4 weeks in primary, 4 days for a diacetyl rest, and it's just now starting to taste good after a week in the keezer.

I put the oak cubes on it and hooked it up to the CO2 supply to carbonate. It'll be another few weeks but I think it'll be well worth it. I'll report back in about a month if anyone's still interested.
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:19 PM   #4
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Two months later...



(paint sample is just for reference)

I got great head characteristics over the lagering period and it picked up quite a bit of a golden-frosty color from the oak. Note that it tastes absolutely nothing like tequila. It's the fruity yeast character of your classic EuroLager (closer to Stella Artois than Harp, but easily identifiable), plus a little spicines and citrus from the Amarillo. The oak, while it did mellow the beer a bit, imparted more zesty/roastiness than I thought. Future batches may want to cut down the oak from 3 oz. to two. This should also help with color/clarity if you're going for something really light-colored. Also, don't soak the oak cubes for the entire 4-week primary. 10-15 days is plenty and any more than that is just gonna make your top-shelf tequila undrinkably oaky. My Herradura Anejo tastes like burnt trees and not a lot else. Good thing it was only 2-3 ounces.

As for the beer, the body is spot on. Temperature-wise, it actually seems more rounded at the 55-60*F range which is higher than I expected for my first lager. When cold, the spice/zest is a little overwhelming, but the oak and sweet malt flavors seem to come out better as it warms. Around 5.5% ABV (47-48 points SG drop, corrected), it's not bad at all on a warm day.


If I had to try it again, I think I'd try a sherry cask type of aging. It seems like that would be a better compliment to this yeast but as I saw here, it's kindof a crapshoot until you try it. Oh well, the joys of homebrewing, right?

My only solid advice is to have some patience. I thought I'd be drinking this one inside 6 or 7 weeks. Nope. Take your time, let it do its thing. The S-23 will get there at its own pace, but don't worry, it'll get there!

And since the first picture didn't really show it off that well, here's one in some better light:

(Note good head retention, some light lacing and good clarity. This is pretty good beer, if I can brag for a bit.)
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