Strong Bitter Common Room ESB

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rico567

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I definitely forgot my FWH, but threw them in as the wort was coming to a boil. This beer is excellent, by far the best I've made so far.
The boil smelled great- no beer smells better at this stage than a British ale. Pitched the S-04 about 1045 this morning, now waiting for it to start chompin' on the wort.
 

gcdowd

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The boil smelled great- no beer smells better at this stage than a British ale. Pitched the S-04 about 1045 this morning, now waiting for it to start chompin' on the wort.
That S-04 chomped right through my beer in like 3 days, beer was clear as a bell in a week. I actually think I might try the 1099 Whitbread on this next time, give it a little bit of a higher FG. FG on my first was 1.013, which was pretty good. Not too sweet, but nice and malty
 
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Sorry if this has been adressed before, but I just cant go through 53 pages to find it.

For how long can you age this? Should it be drunk young and fresh or can it be aged a little, if so, for how long?

Thanks, and please answer!!
 

ayupbrewing

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I brewed this 6 weeks ago ago. its been in bottle 3 weeks and there is a big difference from 2 weeks but needs a little longer I believe as mine turned out quite hot, but that is mellowing should be good in another 2 weeks.
 

bhondorp

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Sorry if this has been adressed before, but I just cant go through 53 pages to find it.

For how long can you age this? Should it be drunk young and fresh or can it be aged a little, if so, for how long?

Thanks, and please answer!!
My first batch of this lasted for about 4 weeks until we hosted a birthday party. It got so much better and I anticipate it would have continued to improve with age. Time is your friend with this beer.
 

gcdowd

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Sorry if this has been adressed before, but I just cant go through 53 pages to find it.

For how long can you age this? Should it be drunk young and fresh or can it be aged a little, if so, for how long?

Thanks, and please answer!!
I think I tapped this at 6 weeks. But like all my beers, every pint was better and better. At 8 weeks it was amazing
 

timewasted

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I am brewing this one today. I went with Marris Otter as the base malt. It should be great!
 

gcdowd

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So far, this is my favorite beer that I've brewed. So in honor of National Homebrew day, I'm brewing it again on Saturday. When I was weighing out my grains last night, I had just weighed out what I THOUGHT to be my 0.75 lbs of C-60 and dumped it in my bucket on top of the base malt. It was then I realized it was the C-120! Ahhh! I picked out as much as I could without getting the base malt in there, probably got about 0.25 lbs out. So I now had 0.5 lbs C-120 in there so I decided to just add 0.5 lbs of C-60, rather than the 0.75 lbs. Hopefully this will turn out ok, I'm sure it'll be fine. Anyway, also subbing for all EKG, rather than Fuggles. Using Wyeast 1099 Whitbread Ale too. I'm excited!
 

bhondorp

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gcdowd said:
So far, this is my favorite beer that I've brewed. So in honor of National Homebrew day, I'm brewing it again on Saturday. When I was weighing out my grains last night, I had just weighed out what I THOUGHT to be my 0.75 lbs of C-60 and dumped it in my bucket on top of the base malt. It was then I realized it was the C-120! Ahhh! I picked out as much as I could without getting the base malt in there, probably got about 0.25 lbs out. So I now had 0.5 lbs C-120 in there so I decided to just add 0.5 lbs of C-60, rather than the 0.75 lbs. Hopefully this will turn out ok, I'm sure it'll be fine. Anyway, also subbing for all EKG, rather than Fuggles. Using Wyeast 1099 Whitbread Ale too. I'm excited!
Let us know how it turns out!
 

juggaleo

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My second batch of common room is fermenting right now, also one of my favorites that I've brewed or tasted in my whole life
 

idrinkstuffnthings

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Has anyone made this with american 2 row? If so, was it any good? I tried my first ESB a few weeks ago and would really like to brew one up. I know UK 2 row is preffered but all I have right now is US. Thanks
 

gcdowd

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Has anyone made this with american 2 row? If so, was it any good? I tried my first ESB a few weeks ago and would really like to brew one up. I know UK 2 row is preffered but all I have right now is US. Thanks
Yes. My first one I used Canadian 2 row. And it was fantastic!
 

gcdowd

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Right on thanks. And ya mines actually Canadian too. I should be representing good ol' Oh Canada here jeez.
Hey, I just double checked my notes and it turns out I used Golden Promise. I wanted to just let you know.

Either way, I think using American/Canadian 2 row would be fine.

Go forth and brew!
 

bhondorp

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Has anyone made this with american 2 row? If so, was it any good? I tried my first ESB a few weeks ago and would really like to brew one up. I know UK 2 row is preffered but all I have right now is US. Thanks
You can use US 2 row, but it wont at all be the same recipe. In my opinion, british malts are THE key to this recipe. My preference is to use Maris Otter (Thomas Fawcett or other UK maltster). It would probably be a delicious American amber if you used US 2 row, but it would not (in my opinion) be the delicious ESB with all of the richness and character it can have.
 

rico567

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You can use US 2 row, but it wont at all be the same recipe. In my opinion, british malts are THE key to this recipe. My preference is to use Maris Otter (Thomas Fawcett or other UK maltster). It would probably be a delicious American amber if you used US 2 row, but it would not (in my opinion) be the delicious ESB with all of the richness and character it can have.
This is why I went all-out with Fawcett's Optic malt for my first batch. I had already used MO in a batch of Orfy's Mild-Mannered Ale in an earlier batch, and decided to try the Optic since I'd heard it was so good in British-style ales.
 

bottlebomber

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rico567 said:
This is why I went all-out with Fawcett's Optic malt for my first batch. I had already used MO in a batch of Orfy's Mild-Mannered Ale in an earlier batch, and decided to try the Optic since I'd heard it was so good in British-style ales.
And?? ;)
 

Amesanite

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Brew day went great, this is my 7th brew so I'm pretty newbish but I nailed the OG after converting to 84% brewhouse eff. Thanks for the recipe. Ill let you know when it carbs up what I think and get a picture on the board. I'm stoked for this imagining this is what my Grampa drank in the pub while he was stationed in England training for WW2.

Thanks again !!
 

bottlebomber

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rico567 said:
Well....the brewday went fine, it fermented out like a champ, and now I'm waiting for it to bottle-condition. I'll try to remember to post back......
Cool, please do. I would like to try optic malt on something, but it would have to be noticeably different than MO to be worth ordering, because I can get sacks of MO for $50. I also want to try Pearl, but same story. Don't want to pay over $2 a pound for base malt after shipping unless it makes my beer noticeably different.
 

hunter_le five

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Picked up ingredients at my LHBS today to brew this tomorrow. I wanted to use Marris Otter for the base grains, but they were out of it (among other things), so I subbed with Golden Promise, which I understand is supposed to be pretty similar to MO. Has anyone tried this recipe with Golden Promise?
 

gcdowd

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Picked up ingredients at my LHBS today to brew this tomorrow. I wanted to use Marris Otter for the base grains, but they were out of it (among other things), so I subbed with Golden Promise, which I understand is supposed to be pretty similar to MO. Has anyone tried this recipe with Golden Promise?
Yes, I used Golden Promise. It was awesome
 

gcdowd

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Let us know how it turns out!
Just to give an update. So brew day went well, I used Gambrinus ESB malt, which is supposedly similar to MO. Anyway, the OG was 1.053 and FG is 1.012. I took a hydro sample the other day and it has a very distinct raisiny flavor (assuming from the C-120, as I used too much). Overall I think it's gonna be pretty good. It's more malty that the first one I brewed with S-04, I attribute that to both the extra C-120 and the fact that I used Wyeast 1099, Whitbread Ale. Time will tell further but so far so good.

I will say that the 1099 CHOMPED through this one quick. The beer was at FG and clear by day 4! I'm going to keg this weekend and age it for another 4 weeks or so. I'll give another update if I remember!
 

thrust

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I'll be brewing this for a second time tomorrow. It's one of the better beers I've made to date, and works extra well served via a nitro pour!
 

rico567

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Since this is my first batch, I sampled a bottle at two weeks conditioning at 70F. Definitely conditioning, definitely needs more time. I'm guessing (in our 60F basement) about 3 more weeks ought to be about right.
 

hunter_le five

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I just kegged mine last night. My numbers were a bit off (OG 1.060/FG 1.021), but I still achieved reasonable attenuation and the samples I tried last night tasted pretty darn good for uncarbonated, young, room temperature beer. :) I can't wait to taste it in a couple weeks after it has carbed up.
 

rico567

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Well, I am now up to 5 weeks in the bottle, and this beer is really getting great. For this one, I bought a 6 of Fuller's ESB, so that I'd have my baseline to compare it to. Result = oh, yeah!

Note: I think part of the secret to getting the real ESB taste out of this is to be sure and use Maris Otter, Golden Promise, or Optic malt- something pretty authentically British. I used the latter, and got great results.
 

hunter_le five

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Turned out great! This is probably my favorite English bitter I've tried so far. Wonderful malty taste and mouthfeel, but not overly sweet at all, and just enough hop character to balance out the beer. Smells fantastic.

I'm going to go ahead and serve some of this at a party this weekend, though i expect the rest will only get better with age.

I will definitely be making this one again.

image-1986792162.jpg
 

TimothyK

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I just wanted to thank you for this recipe. I brewed this as my first foray into the AG world. It has been in the fermenter for a week now and it is looking good, I can't wait t keg it.

Has anyone else have some very vigorous yeast activity with this beer? My airlock blew off and I had to improvise a blow-off tube.

Also, my fermentation temps have bee hitting 73-74 degree range. Does anyone think S-04 may produce some off-flavours at this temperature?

Thank You
 

rico567

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With fermentation temps that high, you may be into a longer conditioning time. Mine fermented at around 62F, and it took a while to condition.
 

polarbearbrewing

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Just brewed this today via the BIAB method. My OG was 1.055 so right on the money! Hydrometer sample looked and tasted great! I have high hopes for this brew. Thanks for the recipe!!
 

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Well SOB. Cleaning up from the brew day and what do i find on the bench. The final addition of EKG and Fuggle. Forgot the flameout addition. DOH! My plan is to primary for 2 weeks then 1 week dry hop. Hopefully she turns out good. I know dry hop is different but who knows.
 

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This beer is fantastic! It's become one of my house brews and everyone that tries it loves it! I changed the yeast to WLP007, and it finishes up pretty quick. Thanks for sharing!
 

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I've only had a couple of commercial examples of an ESB, but I brewed this and it is bordline drinkable vs tossing it. Disclaimer, I changed the hops to Northdown and Progress, but I followed the grain bill to the letter. Fermented at 68-70 with S-04 for about 9 days, reached 1.016 and kegged. After a week or so of carbing up, it has an extremely nutty taste up front, almost like that of a peanut husk with that is harsh. It fades as you make your way through the glass, but I've never experienced this in a beer. I've been brewing 2.5 years and feel my process is down, but very disappointed in the way it came out and figure it has to be something wrong on my end. My other concerns is I wonder if my LHBS got some of the malts mixed up....
 

NewkyBrown

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Brewing this now. First brew using my new grain mill and my 3 year old son just broke my hydrometer so I have no idea about efficiency/gravity etc. Oh well, as long as its drinkable!
 

hogwash

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I've only had a couple of commercial examples of an ESB, but I brewed this and it is bordline drinkable vs tossing it. Disclaimer, I changed the hops to Northdown and Progress, but I followed the grain bill to the letter. Fermented at 68-70 with S-04 for about 9 days, reached 1.016 and kegged. After a week or so of carbing up, it has an extremely nutty taste up front, almost like that of a peanut husk with that is harsh. It fades as you make your way through the glass, but I've never experienced this in a beer. I've been brewing 2.5 years and feel my process is down, but very disappointed in the way it came out and figure it has to be something wrong on my end. My other concerns is I wonder if my LHBS got some of the malts mixed up....
When I brewed this it took awhile for the flavors to come together. I'd let it sit in the keg for a month or so & then give it a go.
 
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