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Old 07-17-2011, 08:37 PM   #1
ao125
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Oct 2010
Alexandria, VA
Posts: 491
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Recipe Type: All Grain   
Yeast: German Ale / Kolsh (WLP029)   
Batch Size (Gallons): 5   
Original Gravity: 1.052   
Final Gravity: 1.014   
IBU: 14.6   
Boiling Time (Minutes): 60   
Color: 72 SRM   
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 7 days @70F   
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 20 days @70F   
Tasting Notes: Cinnamon, dates, anise, toasty, creamy.   

"Date Night" Schwarzeweizen

Black as midnight, and full of complex datey goodness.

Grain Bill:
4# 0oz - Pale Malt (Maris Otter)
3# 8oz - Chocolate Wheat Malt
2# 0oz - Flaked Wheat
0# 8oz - Rice Hulls

Boil:
1oz - Tettnang pellet @ 60min
1 tbsp - Irish Moss @ 5min
0.8oz - Yeast Nutrient @ 0min
0.4oz - Yeast Energizer @ 0min

Yeast:
White Labs German Ale / Kolsh (WLP029)

Secondary:
3.2# - Pitted Dates
0.8 oz - Saigon Cinnamon

Secondary Prep:
Bring the dates & cinnamon to a boil. Cover and allow to cool.
Once cool, add to secondary and then rack the beer on top.

For dates, I ended up using packages of date puree / paste from the Halal market at the end of my street:


Tasting:
5/16: Incredible amount of toast - which is to be expected with the high amount of specialty grain. I can't wait to see how this sits on top of the 3lbs of dates. I think the two will go nicely together.

5/22: I tasted some of the early beer mixed with some of the dates and they were definitely needed. The sweetness helps to balance out some of the toast/char from all of the toasted wheat.

6/19: Just moved from secondary to keg. The flavor profile changed a lot. Much of the in-your-face toast is gone, replaced by a lot more of an earthiness. The dates were absolutely a good call. I think I'm definitely going to let this sit in the keg for a number of weeks before drinking it, to see if it evens out more.

7/9: Keg tapped. Delicious and well rounded. The beer managed to pick up some almost anise flavors. I'll definitely be doing this one again.

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Old 09-12-2011, 02:24 PM   #2
ao125
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Oct 2010
Alexandria, VA
Posts: 491
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Sorry, just realized I forgot temps.

Conversion / Saccharification Rest: infusion of 3.75 gal at 166 F to reach 154 F for 60 mins.
Mash-out: infusion of 1.25 gal at boil to reach 167 F for 15 mins.
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:23 AM   #3
Delaney
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Jul 2011
Montreal, Quebec
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nice...inspired.

 
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Old 02-22-2012, 01:30 AM   #4
Revvy
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This looks interesting. I've had success with dates in beer before. This looks interesting. I'm not a wheat fan though, just how "wheaty" is it? It sounds like a dumb question, but I find that if there's a high percentage of wheat in a grainbill I tend to get a back of the throat sourness that makes me want to gag. I don't know if toasted wheat would have the same effect.
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Old 02-22-2012, 02:17 AM   #5
Delaney
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Jul 2011
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Why did you bring the dates to a boil? This will increase pectic haze...is it not better to steep at 150F for a few minutes?.

Was the date flavour overpowering? Would you consider using more in a recipe?

 
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Old 02-22-2012, 06:41 AM   #6
ao125
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Oct 2010
Alexandria, VA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
This looks interesting. I've had success with dates in beer before. This looks interesting. I'm not a wheat fan though, just how "wheaty" is it? It sounds like a dumb question, but I find that if there's a high percentage of wheat in a grainbill I tend to get a back of the throat sourness that makes me want to gag. I don't know if toasted wheat would have the same effect.
I didn't get that. The wheat gave it a really nice body and mouth feel. The toasted wheat also gave it a really nice roasty quality that was balanced out by the sweetness from the dates.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Delaney View Post
Why did you bring the dates to a boil? This will increase pectic haze...is it not better to steep at 150F for a few minutes?.
The pitted dates came in big vacuum-sealed blocks. The "boiling" was really to soften them up, add a little caramelization, and incorporate the cinnamon. Worked well.

Honestly, I could have sat there and eaten at least a pound of the date/cinnamon mixture. If I'd had a fresh baked loaf of sourdough, it never would have made it into the beer.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Delaney View Post
Was the date flavour overpowering? Would you consider using more in a recipe?
I really enjoyed it. I didn't find it overpowering at all - but to each their own.
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Old 02-22-2012, 09:04 PM   #7
ao125
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Oct 2010
Alexandria, VA
Posts: 491
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One additional note: depending on how firm and/or dried out your blocks of dates are, you may need to add between 1-3 cups of water to get them to the right consistency.

The first time I brewed this, I didn't need to add any water at all to the dates. The second time I added about 3 cups of water.

Use your best judgement.

A note of caution: Bringing 3.2# of dates to a state where they are bubbling can be dangerous. It's essentially hot, sugary, culinary napalm. If you get some bubbled up onto your skin, it may burn you.

Just thought I'd throw that out there.
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