Allagash Curieux Clone

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1Mainebrew

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Hey all, I'm looking for some input on my clone. I made it with:

13# pilsner malt
1 # Carapils
1 # corn sugar
0.5 oz tettnang 60 mins
1 oz hersbrucker 60 min
.25 oz tettnang 30 mins
.5 oz hersbrucker 30 mins
.25 oz tettnang 10 mins
.5 oz hersbrucker 10 min
.5 gal starter of wyeast Belgian Ardennes and wlp550

OG 1.085

it's been in primary for a bit now. I was planning on 30 days primary solo, then 30 days more (still on the cake) with 3 oz of Hungarian medium toast oak cubes that have been soaking in Jim beam for almost a month already- major bourbon flavor being the aim just like Curieux.

So my questions are:

1) is the 60 days too long in primary?
2) is that too much oak for 5 gals of beer?

Thanks for the input.
 
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1Mainebrew

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Ok so I just pulled a sample after a month in primary and it's amazing as a tripel. It's sweeter than I expected and not as phenolic either. It's crystal clear and attenuated all the way down to 1.008 from 1.085!!! I decided to add 2.5 oz of the oak cubes right to primary for 3 weeks and we will see how it is then. This should be quite the beer.
 
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1Mainebrew

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So it's quite clear at this point. You can see the oak cubes on the bottom in the yeast cake.

image-3084628828.jpg


image-591481467.jpg
 
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1Mainebrew

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So I'm kegging this on Monday, 8/1/11. It will have been basically 8 weeks on the cake, 4 weeks on the oak. The last sample I took was a week ago and the Jim Beam was starting to come through here, so I added the rest of the oak cubes that were soaking in some more Jim Beam. I'm hoping that the extra week, and the extra oak, make for a true Curieux clone. We shall see. I have to finish the keg of Kate the Great clone that I have in the kegerator before I will even be touching this though.
 

mhenry41h

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Sounds awesome! I've been doing a lot of research on using oak as I'm planning on making an Oaked and smoked porter in the near future. Everything I've read would suggest that 2.5 oz of oak is way too much. I'm told to use 1 oz per 5 gallon batch with 1.5-2 being an extreme maximum. Are your samples over Oaked? I'd really love to know your results to help my recipe!
 
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1Mainebrew

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Oak cubes are a very different story than oak chips. Even with the full 3 oz I get the slight oak complexities near the finish but its not at all over oaked. It's not overbearing at all.

I just bottled up a few Kate the Greats out of the keg so as soon as that keg is drained I'll be tossing in Curieux.

I'll keep you posted and once I get this chilled, carbed, tested, and photographed I'll stick it up in the recipes.

Thanks for the interest.
 

mhenry41h

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1Mainebrew said:
Oak cubes are a very different story than oak chips. Even with the full 3 oz I get the slight oak complexities near the finish but its not at all over oaked. It's not overbearing at all.

I just bottled up a few Kate the Greats out of the keg so as soon as that keg is drained I'll be tossing in Curieux.

I'll keep you posted and once I get this chilled, carbed, tested, and photographed I'll stick it up in the recipes.

Thanks for the interest.
Cool thanks! I definitely want smoke in the middle and oak in the finish. I don't want the oak to be overbearing but I also don't want people to have to search for it either!
 
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1Mainebrew

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No problem, the Kate the Great clone was aged on 3 oz of Hungarian medium toast oak cubes also and it adds a complexity to the beer but is far from overwhelming. And if it's really cold you need to think about it to taste it. Best wishes!
 

mhenry41h

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I wouldn't have worried about 60 days on the yeast. My concern was the amount of oak but your experience seems to have put that experience to bed for me!

[email protected]
 
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1Mainebrew

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I must say that oak cubes are a great way to oak if you're going to try it. You have a much larger window to work with without overoaking as opposed to chips. I'm very happy with it!
 

redbone

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I've managed to have the Allagash Curiex on cask aged in Jim Beam barrels. This definitely is a nice beer. While I just found this post, I'm a little surprised with the lack of comments. I wonder if anyone else is planning this in the near future... I just did a Strong Golden today. I kind of wish I had done this instead.

1Mainebrew, do you have any pictures of this thing poured up in a glass you can share? Also, where did you get the base recipe?
 
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1Mainebrew

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I will have pics of it in a glass once the kegerator has a spot. I've only had my gravity samples so far.

I got the recipe from the husband of someone I work with who used to work at Allagash.

It's obviously not their yeast but should yield good results. I've also emailed them and received recommendations for yeast to use.

I'll keep everyone posted. Thanks for the interest.
 

Gduck

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Thanks for sharing all of this! It's a beer I've thought about trying from time to time so it's nice to see your experience and results. Most I've ever left something on primary was 45 days, so hearing that after 60 yours was still nice and tasty is good to know.
 

redbone

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I will have pics of it in a glass once the kegerator has a spot. I've only had my gravity samples so far.

I got the recipe from the husband of someone I work with who used to work at Allagash.

It's obviously not their yeast but should yield good results. I've also emailed them and received recommendations for yeast to use.

I'll keep everyone posted. Thanks for the interest.
I'm excited to see and hear more about it. This definitely is a good brew. So, you think the base recipe is pretty authentic according to the guy that use to work at Allagash?
 

nduetime

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I just purchased the ingredients today (minus WLP yeast) to brew up this weekend. Which JB did you use, JB White? I was looking at their website and noticed that their Devil's Cut has a stronger vanilla and oak taste. Can I ask if you dumped any of the JB into the beer or only the cubes? I'm dying to know how this turned out for you.
 
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1Mainebrew

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I just used the original JB. I had the cubes soaking for a while (close to a month if I remember correctly) before brew day. Then on brew day I dumped out the old, brown JB and added fresh. I let that soak for the first month of primary fermentation then dumped the JB and added the cubes to the carboy for the last 30 days.

I have not added JB to the keg. I will wait until I draw a few pints from the kegerator before anything that drastic.

Best wishes on brewing this up!
 
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1Mainebrew

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So I just checked my notes and the oak was in the JB for a week before brew day for a total of 36 days on JB before adding 2.5 oz of the oak to the primary after dumping out the JB down the sink. I then added more JB to the last of the oak. After 3 more weeks on the JB, I added last .5 oz (approximately) of oak to the primary for the last week of primary fermentation.

So 1/6 of the oak was in oak for a full 2 months.

I hope this helps! Let us know how the brew day goes.
 

redbone

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Reading around a bit more about Allagash Tripel/Curieux, the Curieux is the Tripel aged in Jim Beam barrels and then blended back with fresh Tripel. From the website:

Description: Strong Golden Ale
ABV: 9%
Profile: Honey, Passionfruit, Herbal

So, it looks to me that you'd need to get some honey and passion fruit in the recipe to get closer to the Tripel clone before you could actually even attempt a Curieux clone. What you've created might be good, but I don't see this being a definitive or even close clone.

Here is an example of a beer using Passion Fruit: http://www.homebrewersassociation.o...of-the-week-passionfruit-mango-wildfire-wheat

The color of that beer turned out great if that is a real picture of it.
 

heywolfie1015

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redbone said:
Reading around a bit more about Allagash Tripel/Curieux, the Curieux is the Tripel aged in Jim Beam barrels and then blended back with fresh Tripel. From the website:

Description: Strong Golden Ale
ABV: 9%
Profile: Honey, Passionfruit, Herbal

So, it looks to me that you'd need to get some honey and passion fruit in the recipe to get closer to the Tripel clone before you could actually even attempt a Curieux clone. What you've created might be good, but I don't see this being a definitive or even close clone.

Here is an example of a beer using Passion Fruit: http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/pages/community/blog/show?title=recipe-of-the-week-passionfruit-mango-wildfire-wheat

The color of that beer turned out great if that is a real picture of it.
I don't think they literally use passionfruit. It is just a description of the flavor notes they get from the beer...
 
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1Mainebrew

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Right, and we cannot get use of their own yeast because they bottle with a different strain than they ferment with.
 
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1Mainebrew

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heywolfie1015 said:
I would say almost definitely. Belgian yeast throws a lot of interesting flavors, including fruity esters.
I agree with this too!
 
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1Mainebrew

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So the Kate the Great clone is gone and the Curieux clone is chilling and carbing up in the kegerator now...updates to come in a week or so.
 

stevehollx

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I brewed somewhat of a Curiex clone a few months ago.

Code:
BeerSmith Recipe Printout - http://www.beersmith.com
Recipe: Oak Allagash Tripel
Brewer: stevehollx
Asst Brewer: mjk
Style: Belgian Tripel
TYPE: All Grain
Taste: (35.0) Spicy and phenolic @ 3mo from brew day.  Mellowed out by 9/1.  Super smooth now.

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.00 gal      
Boil Size: 7.60 gal
Bottling Volume: 5.00 gal
Estimated OG: 1.082 SG
Estimated Color: 4.5 SRM
Estimated IBU: 28.2 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 70.00 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
------------
Amt                   Name                                     Type          #        %/IBU         
12 lbs 8.0 oz         Pilsner (2 Row) Bel (2.0 SRM)            Grain         1        86.2 %        
2.00 oz               Tettnang [4.50 %] - Boil 60.0 min        Hop           3        24.9 IBUs     
0.50 oz               Hallertauer [4.80 %] - Boil 15.0 min     Hop           5        3.3 IBUs      
0.125 oz               Coriander Seed (Boil 5.0 mins)           Spice         6        -             
1.00 Items            Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins)        Fining        4        -             
3.00 oz               Oak Chips (Secondary 5.0 days)           Flavor        7        -             
2 lbs                 Corn Sugar (Dextrose) (0.0 SRM)          Sugar         2        13.8 %        
2 pkgs               Wyeast 1762 Abbey II

Mash Schedule: !!!My Mash and Double Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 14 lbs 8.0 oz
----------------------------
Name              Description                             Step Temperat Step Time     
Step              Add 15.62 qt of water at 164.6 F        149.0 F       60 min        



Created with BeerSmith 2 - http://www.beersmith.com
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I ended up using chips for a short period of time so that I didn't have to age it on cubes for months. Next time I think I'd throw cubes in the secondary.

The mash temperate is spot on for this, I think. Just the right amount of residual sweetness (which is what sets Allagash Tripel apart from other tripels, I think). The beer had nasty phenols until ~2.5 months where it cleaned right up. It is almost too smooth now and I kind of which I either fermented in the primary warmer, or added more coriander. Next time I may to .25 oz of coriander for 15 min, and I'm thinking of adding a hair of white peppercorn along with it to give a more jagged flavor profile. Another option would be to use a less clean yeast, like WY1214.

I'll probably brew this again in the late winter or spring. It's a good early summer beer.
 
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1Mainebrew

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So first pull after 24 hrs on the gas proved quite surprising. The major taste I pick up is honey. The JB is almost non existent. I added a cup of JB to the keg and will let it ride for a few weeks on the gas to get all carbed up and mix those flavors in a bit more. It is very smooth, without even a hint of >10% abv that it is (without the JB soaked oak or JB in the keg). I will post a pic when it's carbed up. I don't think this will be a pint kind of beer, but more of a snifter, winter warmer, sipping kind of beer. It doesn't seem strong whilest drinking it, but after 15 minutes you can tell this is not your average strength beer!
 
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1Mainebrew

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If I were to make this again I would pit it in a secondary fermenter and age it on the JB soaked oak for 6-12 months. It's great but I needed add the JB to the keg to get the Curieux taste. It needs more time on the gas too. I'll post a picture when it's fully carbed.
 

heywolfie1015

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Just FWIW, and to impart my relatively limited knowledge about Curieux, my understanding is that they age the tripel for two months, age it for two more months on the JB barrels, and then bottle.
 
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1Mainebrew

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True, but the surface area of the JB barrels is much larger than oak cubes so that is why I personally would age it longer on the cubes.
 
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1Mainebrew

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So I just found a small co2 leak last night. That explains why this hasn't carbed yet! I fixed it so hopefully this will be fully carbed in a week. Thanks for the interest!!
 

cjever19

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True, but the surface area of the JB barrels is much larger than oak cubes so that is why I personally would age it longer on the cubes.
Not necessarily. Volume is a factor too, so it's the surface area to volume ratio that is of interest. Having a much smaller, homebrew scale volume, you should have a pretty easy time matching that ratio, what ever it is.

I'd think it would be a pretty easy ratio to find here on the fourm since barrels are a standard size.
 

stevehollx

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Not necessarily. Volume is a factor too, so it's the surface area to volume ratio that is of interest. Having a much smaller, homebrew scale volume, you should have a pretty easy time matching that ratio, what ever it is.

I'd think it would be a pretty easy ratio to find here on the fourm since barrels are a standard size.
Well a 60 gallon rain barrel is 24" diameter by 28" high.

That's:

Two discs of 12" radius squared * pi = 452.16 sq in. each
1 rectangle of circumference (24*pi) * height (28) = 2110
Total surface area = 3014

2014 sq in/60 gall = 50 sq in per gallon.

So a 5 gallon batch needs ~250 sq in.

I don't have oak cubes on hand to measure the average face, but if we assume 1" cubes, that means 6" of surface area per cube, so you would need ~42 cubes to get the same surface area ration that a 60gal wine barrel gets.

I'm getting some cubes in this weekend, and I can measure the average face length, get a weight, and report back with the recommended weight.
 

heywolfie1015

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I don't have oak cubes on hand to measure the average face, but if we assume 1" cubes, that means 6" of surface area per cube, so you would need ~42 cubes to get the same surface area ration that a 60gal wine barrel gets.

I'm getting some cubes in this weekend, and I can measure the average face length, get a weight, and report back with the recommended weight.
Nice. Thank you for that. This also seems about right to me. The common wisdom is that you should use 1-2 oz. of cubes per 5 gallons of brew. I recently completed a big English strong ale using 1 oz. of cubes and, as I remember it, there were about 20 cubes (possibly more) in the fermenter.
 

WolvinMaine

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Just a comment on the yeast strain that Allagash uses. I was at a AHA rally 2 years ago at Allagash, and I asked one of the brewers about the yeast they bottle with, and he said in the big bottles, it is a bottling yeast, not their house strain. However, in the thread below, on the 6th page, someone got a response from Allagash that the 12 oz bottles of White is the primary strain, the same one they use to ferment their triple. So, looks like you maybe able to culture up from there.

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f163/commercial-beer-yeast-harvest-list-262713/index6.html
 
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1Mainebrew

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I actually just read that in another thread too. I'm going to have to give it a try!
 
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