Firestone Walker Pale 31 / Pale Ale Clone

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cladinshadows

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I'm looking to brew a Firestone Pale Ale clone for my brother to have at his college graduation party. Based on what the Firestone-Walker website says, this is what I've come up with:

5# Pale 2-Row
4# Maris Otter
1# Munich
0.5# Crystal 60L
0.5# Cara-Pils

1 oz. Fuggle @ first-wort
0.75 oz. each of Centennial, Cascade, and Chinook @ 10 min.
1.25 oz.each of the three C's dry-hopping in secondary.
Whirlfloc @ 15 min.

Pitch two packets Safale US-05

Predicted OG = 1.047
Predicted FG = 1.012
Approx. SRM = 7.2
ABV = 4.61%

The main goal of this recipe is to approximate the low-bitterness, yet solid hop-flavor with a lightly sweet backbone. Ingredients were based on Firestone's suggestions for items, but they obviously don't give any quantities...

Has anyone made a successful clone of this beer? Any suggestions for my recipe?
 

Matt Up North

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So you are making 10 gallons of this correct? To me it doesn't seem like it will be too sweet, more malty maybe. Might want to add maybe .5lb Crystal 40L for more sweetness. Lastly is that it seems that there is a good amount of hopping, without calculating the IBU's, is there enough bitter on that guy?

Looks like a fun recipe!
 
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cladinshadows

cladinshadows

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So you are making 10 gallons of this correct? To me it doesn't seem like it will be too sweet, more malty maybe. Might want to add maybe .5lb Crystal 40L for more sweetness. Lastly is that it seems that there is a good amount of hopping, without calculating the IBU's, is there enough bitter on that guy?

Looks like a fun recipe!
Batch size is 6 gallons, with an assumed 70% brewhouse efficiency (I'm still working on that).

Yeah I forgot to add the bitterness info in. The IBUs are basically 50/50 early and late additions, with a final IBU of about 36. The commercial version seems to be pretty low bitterness, IMO.

When I describe it as "sweet", I just mean that to me it doesn't have a caramel or chocolate/roasty flavor, it really just tastes like residual pale malt sweetness. This beer is very light, so it really seems that the detectable sweetness is mostly because hop bitterness is kept very low.

But no matter how close it comes to the original, it is still going to be a fun brew and probably taste great!
 

Matt Up North

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I think then that you might be looking for "malty" rather than sweet, possibly. I think that it is going to be good. Brew it up, try it and let us know if it is close to the original.
 
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This is my favorite commercial pale ale. I think it is just fantastic.

If it were my recipe, I think I'd stick with all C hops, probably just Cascades and Centennials. I think the grain bill looks worth a shot. It's a pretty damn malty pale ale as they go.
 

DeathBrewer

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No bittering addition at all? FWH doesn't create a whole lot of bittering...I was under the impression you would still need a 60 minute hops. Haven't done this myself, but my buddy has been experimenting like crazy.
 
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No bittering addition at all? FWH doesn't create a whole lot of bittering...I was under the impression you would still need a 60 minute hops. Haven't done this myself, but my buddy has been experimenting like crazy.
Definitely get enough bittering from FWH for a beer like this. I put no 60 minute additions in many of my beers these days.

I like the oak chip idea above. Don't overdo it, but it would be a good addition. I forgot about that.

edit: My FWH/no 60 minute addition beers are all Centennials or similar, and it definitely does cut the bittering down. Not sure how well it would work for milder hops. I love the effect on most of my pale ales and ambers. IPA's or beers where more bitterness is desired need the 60 minute addition IMO.
 

DeathBrewer

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Last one he made was an IPA, so that's where I saw both additions. We used a hopback for the first time, too :)

I love the DBA, but haven't tried the 31 yet. Maybe I'll pick some up tonight. Let us know how this turns out!
 
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Alright, OP said he had the ingredients, but not the amounts. Now that I'm actually paying attention :p I see that fuggles was used for bittering. That being the case, I'm not sure I like the FWH idea with those. I haven't used a ton of fuggles, so I'm not positive about this, but I doubt you'll get the required bitterness out of them with FWH. I think I'd just use them at 60 myself.

Either way, the recipe looks excellent.
 
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cladinshadows

cladinshadows

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I remember reading somewhere that someone was in contact with the brewmaster and he said to "get crazy" by putting hops in the mash, etc. I'll start with FWH and see if it gets me the mild bitterness I'll need to match the original. I guess I have no option but to experiment with a couple different bittering techniques for this one. It's going to be tough but somebody's got to do it!

The oak chips are an excellent idea. Firestone sure loves their oak barrels. How much oak chips should I add without making it taste like a tree?
 

farmbrewernw

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Didn't the brewcasters "Can you brew it" just do a piece on Firestone's two barrel ale? To me the beer sounded similar to a pale ale, the brew master really liked to put a large plug of hops in at flame out if I remember right.
 
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I remember reading somewhere that someone was in contact with the brewmaster and he said to "get crazy" by putting hops in the mash, etc. I'll start with FWH and see if it gets me the mild bitterness I'll need to match the original. I guess I have no option but to experiment with a couple different bittering techniques for this one. It's going to be tough but somebody's got to do it!

The oak chips are an excellent idea. Firestone sure loves their oak barrels. How much oak chips should I add without making it taste like a tree?
You'll have good beer with that recipe no matter what you do with the hops.

For oak, my experience is not enough to answer. I can only say I'd much rather wish I had more than wish I had less. Not enough oak won't ruin the batch. Too much may.
 

Malticulous

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I used 8 oz French oak chips in a batch once. I think 4-6 oz for up to a week would be close.
edit..I just looked that up and it was only 1oz that I used. 1/2 is probably about right, at least you will taste it.
 

Poindexter

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I got two replies in EdWorts Haus Pale Ale thread. The first includes a pretty fair stab at how the hops end up in the F/W Pale.

I think the factory F/W pale brings a little more malt to the glass than EdWort's Haus does, but I certainly ended up with a quaffable brew. That was a very short lived keg.

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f66/bee-cave-brewery-haus-pale-ale-31793/index12.html#post432568 <-link is to post deep in thread over, clicky without fear

poindexter said:
EDIT IV: 12-08-07: I kegged my third batch about thirty minutes ago. I was shooting for F-W Pale hop clone, I used (60) 4.25HBU Saaz and 3.0HBU Hallertau. (30) was 6.4HBU Hallertau, (15) 3.78 HBU Chinook, (5) was 3.25 HBU Chinook. flat, about to force carb, it is close enough to start fooling with the grains and use all the same noble bittering hop next time.

EDITV: 02-02-08: The 21HBU version described in editIV is the best beer recipe I have ever tweaked. Once it was carbed this stuff kicked absolute butt. I started out trying to clone Firestone-Walker Pale. I think I surpassed them on hops balance. If I had the space to go all grain I would be going after their grain bill, but only because I like that beer so much.
 
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cladinshadows

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I will be dry-hopping with 1.25 oz. of Chinook, cascade, and centennial, as well as throwing 1/2 oz. of toasted oak in there... I finished brewing this up yesterday, and it's VERY clear! I'm really looking forward to this one. If I was a premium-type I'd post pics, but maybe once I'm done...
 

JustSchrager

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I'd love to make this beer too. When you guys figure it out let me know. I'm still learning the ropes.
 
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cladinshadows

cladinshadows

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I will let you know how it turns out in a month... I am really excited for this one.

It won't be perfect yet. I tried to mash at 153, but in the middle of the process I learned that my thermometer reads 2 deg F high, so I mashed at 151 unintentionally. Also, I missed my target OG by 2 points. SO, I ended up with OG=1.045 and my FG is 1.010. It will definitely be drier than the original FWPA.

Also, with all the dry hops I decided on for this batch, it will take quite awhile to mellow.

Next time I'll be aiming for 153 or higher, and depending on how this turns out I may decrease dry hop additions. Also, at the moment I am really unsure about the oak. I really dislike their double barrel ale, and I can't shake the idea that it's probably the over-the-top oaky flavor I feel like it has. At this point I am going to omit the oak and continue working on the basics of this recipe.
 

humann_brewing

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No bittering addition at all? FWH doesn't create a whole lot of bittering...I was under the impression you would still need a 60 minute hops. Haven't done this myself, but my buddy has been experimenting like crazy.
Firestone walker gets most of their bitterness from late additions so they use a crap load of hops late in the boil.

Take a listen to this episode from the brewing network where they talk with the brewmaster there and create a clone for DBA.

The Brewing Network.com - :

EDIT: oops... looks like farmbrewernw or should I say "the stig" already mentioned this.
 

Catch-22

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Old thread but I'm looking for a recipe

I talked to Jamil about a month ago and asked for this one for CYBI. He said that he has a stack of requests but would try to speed that one up. He's good friends with the brewmaster Matt so we should get a spot on clone.
 

hawk2001v

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I was just drinking a 22oz. of this beer and was wondering if their waas a clone recipe and sure enough, I googled it and found my way here....I looked at the recipe and can definitely tast the Maris Otter but the 1ilb of Munich sounds like a bit much for a 5 gallon batch...I'd love to hear the results of the recipe....Sounds like a good recipe but am curious to know if it tastes like the real thing.
 

BeachBeerBoo

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Found this old thread and giving it a shot tomorrow. Will let you all know how it turns out.

I think the dry hopping quantities may be a bit heavy though. Will scale back to 1 oz of each (Centennial, Chinook, and Cascade).

EDIT: Even 1 oz of each sounds like a bit much for dry hopping. How about 0.5 oz of each?
 

jman300sd

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Whats the verdict? How did this turn out? Would you brew it again? I'm looking to brew a 10 gallon batch of pale ale on Sunday and was thinking of trying this out
 

andrewmcd11

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How did this recipe turn out? Had F/W pale ale for first time this weekend. Would really like to brew a clone
 

jkn09

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andrewmcd11 said:
How did this recipe turn out? Had F/W pale ale for first time this weekend. Would really like to brew a clone
I second this. Just got FW here in Texas last month and had my first Pale 31 last night. It was incredible.
 

mariahman

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This is a terrific recipe, one that I am going to brew again soon. I had a bunch of the 3 C's hops that I grew in my garden so my first batch was all homegrown hops, except for the fuggles. Great flavor, smooth and sessionable. Love it.
 

mariahman

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I wanted to further echo my previous praise of this recipe by letting you know it's a legitimate winner. We brewed it in May, called it the Game Over Pale Ale, kegged and served at out wedding, to much praise. But we also entered it into a local homebrew comp and it took 1st in its category, 4th for best of show!


Sent from my iPhone using Home Brew
 

dtwhite

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Yesterday I google searched for "pale 31 clone" and this thread came up... turns out I'm the brother in question in the OP.

1) I will be brewing this soon for old times
2) The only feedback I got from the author is to use WLP002 for a more accurate flavor, but it was otherwise good stuff
3) Firestone has tweaked their Pale 31 recipe quite a bit over the years and this is more representative of the old-school version that was literally the first "hoppy" beer I loved. Threshold shifts and all that. Anyway, that makes it all the more enticing.
4) Pale 31 used to be a blend of the Mission St. Pale Ale that Firestone made for Trader Joes and Double Barrel Ale, and they no longer made the former. So this is even more of an approximation, but the ingredient names still match what is on the website (sans CaraPils).
 
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cladinshadows

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Trying to keep the tradition alive here with a post every few years saying “oh yeah I should brew that again and report back!” Well, this time I’ll report back.

I've got a 2.5 gallon batch of this fermenting happily at an initial temp of 17C. Will ramp to 19C for a day or two and then 20C to finish. Hopefully this batch will come with me on a trip to Paso Robles this coming weekend for a nice side-by-side with the real deal straight from the source.

Full discussion and recipe to come!

 

Shenanigans

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Trying to keep the tradition alive here with a post every few years saying “oh yeah I should brew that again and report back!” Well, this time I’ll report back.

I've got a 2.5 gallon batch of this fermenting happily at an initial temp of 17C. Will ramp to 19C for a day or two and then 20C to finish. Hopefully this batch will come with me on a trip to Paso Robles this coming weekend for a nice side-by-side with the real deal straight from the source.

Full discussion and recipe to come!

Good stuff.
Please report back :mug:
 
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cladinshadows

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So not everything went the way I wanted for this side-by-side. Most importantly: we didn’t actually do a side-by-side. However, I did have some of the real deal at the Firestone-Walker brewery-restaurant and I will relay what I’m going to change for my next attempt to get it closer based on what I interpreted from my taste.

When I brewed this I ended up going a bit off the rails with the hops. I threw in some Citra and Simcoe and almost doubled the IBUs. I’m from Southern CA so what do you expect. Because of that, for this assessment, I’ll focus on the malt bill and other parameters because the hops were never going to be on target. Here’s what I did:

OG = 1.049
FG = 1.009

GRIST (% by weight)
49% Pale 2-Row
33% Maris Otter
12% Light Munich
6% Carastan 35L

MASH
100% RO water w/ Brewcraft Burton Water Salts added
Mashed at 149F for several hours

BOIL
Whirlfloc and yeast nutrient in the boil

YEAST & FERMENT
Vitality starter of WLP002 pitched at 62F. Allowed to reach 68F on day 3.

RESULTS
I brewed this beer 7 days before it was consumed, so it still had some diacetyl, etc. Ignoring that, the real thing is much more 2-row dominant. The color on the homebrew was maybe 1-2 SRM high when compared to Pale 31. Next step would be to replace some of the Maris Otter with 2-Row for a cleaner malt impression. I think the munich and crystal were right. Next time I’ll do:
70% Pale 2-Row
12% Maris Otter
12% Light Munich
6% Carastan 35L

WLP002 at a moderate temperature is definitely the way to go to get the character of the commercial version.

Hops are predominantly citrusy, so stick with cascade and centennial. Citra and Simcoe don’t seem right.

Here's the beer at 8 days:

https://i.imgur.com/WKS8N0P.jpg
 

Shenanigans

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Looks good.
Thanks for the report. :mug:
I might give it a shot with the original hops and 1318 as I find wlp002/1968 too finicky.
I'll also use Pale ale and caraamber instead of the 2-Row and Carastan.
Might be next year but I'll report back

:)
 
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