Feedback on recipe to split mash for two different beers

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Zippy123

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I am looking for feedback on the recipe I have created to split a single mash into two beers: 2021 BJCP 11B Ordinary Bitter and 19A American Amber Ale, as guidelines for the two styles. Emphasis on guidelines. Key goal is to keep it as simple as possible. I consider these non-negotiable to achieve simplicity: Use all Briess malts, hops in 1 oz increments (no leftovers), dry yeast, and package in 3 gallon kegs. If you suggest alterations to the recipe please stick to the stated non-negotiables. Assumptions: BIAB method, 1 gal/hr boiloff, ~65% brewhouse effiency. (If you wish to discuss my dismal BIAB efficiency number please PM me rather than post in this thread; I'd like to keep this thread about the recipe only.)

The specific feedback I am seeking relates to the hops choice and timing, and specialty grains choice and timing. I have carefully calculated the SRM, IBU and ABV of each beer, and selected the base & specialty malts to fit the 11B & 19A guidelines. I am more confident in the Amber recipe than the Bitter as I have brewed the former but not the latter.

Basic recipe:
9.5 gal RO treated to Balanced profile, reserve 0.75 gal for steeping specialty grains
Grist: 13 lbs Briess pale ale malt 3.5L, 1 lb Briess caramel malt 80L
Steeping grains: 8 oz Briess victory malt 28L (for 11B)

Mash grist in 8.75 gallons treated water at 152°F for 60 minutes
Drain and collect 8 gallons wort, target SG 1.041
Split collected wort:
- 4.5 gallons for 19A American Amber Ale
- 3.5 gallons for 11B Best Bitter

Brew 19A American Amber Ale:
- 0.5 oz Amarillo (8.1%) @ 60 min
- 1 oz Cascade (5.0%) @ 10 min
- 0.5 oz Amarillo (8.1%) @ 5 min
Target ending kettle volume: ~3.5 gallons
Chill to 70°F and pitch Safale US-05, primary ~3 weeks ~65°F then crash & keg
SRM 12 | IBU 40 | ABV 5.9%

Brew 11B Best Bitter:
Steep specialty grains in 0.75 gal reserved water, 20 mins @ 160°F
Add steeping water to 3.5 gallons @1.041 collected wort
- 0.75 oz Kent Golding (5.0%) @ 60 min
- 0.25 oz Kent Golding (5.0%) @ 30 min
- Target ending kettle volume: ~3.25 gallons
Chill to 70°F and pitch Safale S-04, primary ~3 weeks ~65°F then crash & keg
SRM 12 | IBU 34 | ABV 4.3%
 
Simple, solid recipes. They’ll be good.

I’m not really clear how the two end up with such a difference in strength, but I trust you’re doing the math correctly.

I’d probably just mash the victory and use exactly the same wort for both, just to make things easier.

If you’re committed to Briess, you should make the acquaintance of Extra Special. 4 oz. or so in here might be a nice addition.

Other than that, my only recommendation would be to add an additional late EKG addition to the bitter. 0.5 oz. at 5 minutes, maybe. I like hop aroma.
 
Simple, solid recipes. They’ll be good.
Thanks for that!

I’m not really clear how the two end up with such a difference in strength, but I trust you’re doing the math correctly.
The amber uses 4.5 gals of the total 8 gal wort and is boiled down to ~3.5 gal. So 1.041 --> 1.053 finishing at 1.008 or so.

The bitter uses 3.5 gals of the total 8 gal wort and nearly 0.75 gals of steeping water is added, then it is boiled down to ~3.25 gal. So 1.041 --> 1.034 --> 1.044 finishing at 1.008 or so. I don't brew many session beers so this would be a departure from my usual 5.5-7.5% ABV beers.

I’d probably just mash the victory and use exactly the same wort for both, just to make things easier.
I chose Victory as a steeping grain for the bitter to provide the toasted, biscuity, and nutty flavors that are appropriate for the bitter but not the amber. Steeping the Victory, plus the different yeast strains, are the basis for the different flavor profiles in the two beers.

If you’re committed to Briess, you should make the acquaintance of Extra Special. 4 oz. or so in here might be a nice addition.
I like Briess overall because it is local to me and my LHBS has great pricing and availability on their malts. I did not select Extra Special because I've gotten hints of plum or raisin from it in another brew. I don't think it's quite right for either of these recipes.

Other than that, my only recommendation would be to add an additional late EKG addition to the bitter. 0.5 oz. at 5 minutes, maybe. I like hop aroma.
Yes that would probably be the right direction. It would leave me with 0.5 oz Kent Golding left over.

Maybe I could add that extra 0.5 Kent Golding to the amber at flameout for an aroma hop although I'm not sure how the floral would work with the citrus and pine from the Amarillo and Cascade hops.

Thanks for your constructive feedback!
 
Thanks for that!


The amber uses 4.5 gals of the total 8 gal wort and is boiled down to ~3.5 gal. So 1.041 --> 1.053 finishing at 1.008 or so.

The bitter uses 3.5 gals of the total 8 gal wort and nearly 0.75 gals of steeping water is added, then it is boiled down to ~3.25 gal. So 1.041 --> 1.034 --> 1.044 finishing at 1.008 or so. I don't brew many session beers so this would be a departure from my usual 5.5-7.5% ABV beers.


I chose Victory as a steeping grain for the bitter to provide the toasted, biscuity, and nutty flavors that are appropriate for the bitter but not the amber. Steeping the Victory, plus the different yeast strains, are the basis for the different flavor profiles in the two beers.


I like Briess overall because it is local to me and my LHBS has great pricing and availability on their malts. I did not select Extra Special because I've gotten hints of plum or raisin from it in another brew. I don't think it's quite right for either of these recipes.


Yes that would probably be the right direction. It would leave me with 0.5 oz Kent Golding left over.

Maybe I could add that extra 0.5 Kent Golding to the amber at flameout for an aroma hop although I'm not sure how the floral would work with the citrus and pine from the Amarillo and Cascade hops.

Thanks for your constructive feedback!
Or use the last bit as a dry hop for the bitter. Some brewers used to add a small amount to the cask so it would be in style.
 

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