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Brown Ale Recipe Changes

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Omahawk

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Brewing buddy and I made a really nice English Brown last year, loosely based on Newcastle Brown (the kind in the cans, not the spoiled crap that shows up in the clear bottles). I wanted to provide our 2013 recipe, our tasting notes, and then provide my draft proposed changes. I will add that I have brewed all grain for several years, but am a relative newcomer to British grains and yeast.

Here's what we brewed, and the things we wanted to change.

2013 Recipe (12 gallons post boil):

14.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 57.85 %
4.00 lb Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 16.53 %
1.75 lb Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM) Grain 7.23 %
1.00 lb Brown Malt (65.0 SRM) Grain 4.13 %
1.00 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (40.0 SRM) Grain 4.13 %
1.00 lb Munich Malt (9.0 SRM) Grain 4.13 %
0.60 lb Pale Chocolate (200.0 SRM) Grain 2.48 %
0.50 oz EKG [7.10 %] (80 min) Hops 5.6 IBU
2.00 oz Fuggles [5.20 %] (60 min) Hops 15.7 IBU
1.00 oz Fuggles [5.20 %] (15 min) Hops 3.9 IBU
2 Pkgs British Ale (Wyeast Labs #1098) Yeast-Ale with 2L starter

OG: 1.050 SG
FG: 1.011 SG
Bitterness: 25.2 IBU
Est Color: 14.1 SRM
Single Infusion Mash at 151 F


2013 Notes:
  • I had a bag of US 2-row left over and wanted to use it. I used an 80/20 split of US/UK and added 1 lb Munich to balance it back towards a biscuity base. I'd like to try and avoid that this time, and just go UK base.
  • We really liked the touch of roast from the Pale Chocolate. Our notes said we could push this slightly farther next time.
  • The major draw back was that we thought it was slightly "watery" and could have used a little more body.

Preliminary 2014 Brown Ale (12 gallons post boil):

18.00 lb Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 83.72 %
1.00 lb Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM) Grain 4.65 %
1.00 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (40.0 SRM) Grain 4.65 %
0.75 lb Pale Chocolate (200.0 SRM) Grain 3.49 %
0.50 lb English Medium Crystal (77.0 SRM) Grain 2.33 %
0.25 lb Chocolate Malt (450.0 SRM) Grain 1.16 %
2.00 oz Goldings, East Kent [7.20 %] (80 min) Hops 23.0 IBU
1.00 oz Fuggles [5.20 %] (15 min) Hops 3.9 IBU
2 Pkgs British Ale (Wyeast Labs #1098) Yeast-Ale with 2L Starter

Est OG: 1.050 SG
Est FG: 1.013 SG
Bitterness: 27.0 IBU
Est Color: 17.0 SRM
Single Infusion Mash at 153


  • To address the slightly "watery" backbone, we've upped the level of Crystal with a darker crystal addition. I've also proposed raising the mash temp up to 153.
  • To address the desire for extra roast, I was thinking of adding the smidge of Chocolate Malt.
  • Since I've added two darker malts, I dropped the Brown malt. I know they are entirely different flavors, but I thought it was too much to keep it in there with the Biscuit, 2 Crystals, and 2 Chocholates already happening.
  • Last change was the hopping - I have no idea why I did the weird 80 minute and 60 minute additions on the 2013 version. :drunk: Decided to simplify that.

Thoughts? Is it too roasty to be considered English at this point?
 

ddrrseio

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why change the roast profile if you liked the beer? i would address the things you mentioned and leave the rest as it is
 
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Omahawk

Omahawk

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We were looking for a little more roasty flavor. However, for the sake of being scientific about it, adjusting one variable at a time might make sense.

Priority #1 is more body.
 

Brewsncrabs

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I use wyeast 1450 for more mouthfeel. This has made a huge difference in body for me. I have tried several strains including some British strains and it made the difference for me. Made a batch yesterday and added some flaked oats. We will see how it goes.


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ddrrseio

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We were looking for a little more roasty flavor. However, for the sake of being scientific about it, adjusting one variable at a time might make sense.

Priority #1 is more body.
no need to isolate things to that level - i just thought body was your main/only concern. i find pale chocolate to, in some ways, be less roasty than brown malt, which has a very forward and sharp toasty note.
 
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Omahawk

Omahawk

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i find pale chocolate to, in some ways, be less roasty than brown malt, which has a very forward and sharp toasty note.
I had not heard this- interesting. Perhaps I'll have to reassess dropping the brown malt.
 
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Omahawk

Omahawk

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I use wyeast 1450 for more mouthfeel. This has made a huge difference in body for me. I have tried several strains including some British strains and it made the difference for me. Made a batch yesterday and added some flaked oats. We will see how it goes.


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You know, I've never used Denny's yeast. I'll have to give it a shot. Thanks for the recommendation.
 

Brewsncrabs

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Pale chocolate is definitely less roasty, which is why I like it. It gives just a hint of roast.


Beer and crabs were meant for each other!
 

JF_HBrews

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I'm surprised you cut the brown malt I find it gives some nice roast flavor without going to porter/stout territory.
 
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Omahawk

Omahawk

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I'm surprised you cut the brown malt I find it gives some nice roast flavor without going to porter/stout territory.
Honestly, the last time I made this was my first and only time using brown malt, I assumed all of my roast flavor came the Pale Chocolate. I (incorrectly) thought brown malt was more of a heavier biscuit / toast flavor.

I'll be adding the brown malt back in this time around.
 
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Omahawk

Omahawk

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Thanks for the input. Here's where I currently am with the grainbill and hops - 12 gallons post boil

18.00 lb Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 80.90 %
1.00 lb Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM) Grain 4.49 %
1.00 lb Brown Malt (65.0 SRM) Grain 4.49 %
1.00 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (40.0 SRM) Grain 4.49 %
0.75 lb Pale Chocolate (200.0 SRM) Grain 3.37 %
0.50 lb English Medium Crystal (77.0 SRM) Grain 2.25 %
2.00 oz Goldings, East Kent [7.20 %] (80 min) Hops 22.8 IBU
1.00 oz Fuggles [5.20 %] (15 min) Hops 3.9 IBU

Mash @ 153 F, 1.052 SG.

Yeast to be determined. I'll update when brewed.
 

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