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Old 11-29-2011, 04:21 PM   #1
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Default Bramling Cross (my expectations... and experience)

I just kegged a Cherrywood Smoked Pale-ish ale I bittered and flavored with Bramling Cross hops.

The recipe-

11# Maris Otter
3# Cherrywood Smoked Malt
0.5# Crystal 40

I can't read my handwriting, but I mashed it at 147* or 149* (my first mistake, should have mashed higher).

1.5 oz BC for 60 minutes and 1 oz at 10 minutes.

I had an issue with my hop bag and ended up dumping the hops and trub into my fermenter (my second mistake, I basically dry-hopped my primary). Six gallons at 1.070 OG.

Pitched rehydrated Nottingham and Fermented at 64* for two weeks.

Here's what I expected... a slightly (sweet smoke) smoky, pale/ amber ale with notes of black currant (dark berry/ grape flavors)

Here's what I got... dry (FG 1.012), tart lemon... lots of lemon, pale-ish ale with a wonderful aftertaste of that sweet cherry smoke. The alcohol bite (8%) really accentuates the lemon flavor and subdues the smoke.

Now, it is a two week old 8% ale that I sampled uncarbonated... so there is room for improvement. I'm letting it carb and age and will tap something else from the pipeline.

If I were to do this recipe again I would use Brewers Gold instead of the Bramling Cross and a yeast that would attenuate less that Nottingham (so, an entirely different beer).

I can't say this is a fair review of Bramling Cross... but it's what I did and the results I got. I learned from it and thought I'd share the experience.

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Old 11-30-2011, 11:37 AM   #2
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My experience with BC is depressing - all i got is sharp, pungent bitterness (roughly similar to Brewer's Gold), no grape/blackcurrant notes at all.
Nobody expects Spanish infection!
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Old 11-30-2011, 01:24 PM   #3
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Here's my Bramling Cross thread.
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