Holiday Honey Ale

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tumbleweed14

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Hey all, new brewer looking for some feed back, For my first brew I steeped some Crystal malt grain, added 7.5 lbs of LME, boiled, added one pound of honey at end of boil. Also added hops for an IBU 0f 25. Anyway, long story short, it turned out to be a great beer with an ABV of 8.5. Popular with friends and I got a positive response from a local micro brewer. I asked him what he thought of adding Celestial Seasonings holiday spice tea bags during conditioning to add a little spice, he suggested using some of his yeast strain (sweet!), steeping with wheat flake, and using the tea bags to make a good holiday brew.
Any way, we are brewing this weekend and I will let you know the results.
Any comments or suggestions are welcome.
Thanks,
Tumbleweed
Busenfrie Brewery:mug:
 

MikeRLynch

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If you liked the honey aspect of this recipe, you'll probably like a braggot, which is basically a mead-beer hybrid. There are a lot of opinions on what ratio of honey to malt is required, but I've heard that anywhere from 50% to 30% honey is acceptable. If you were to do 4 lbs of pale LME with 4 lbs of honey, then do your spicing schedule, you'd end up with a nice winter warmer :) If you do this, back off on the hops just a little, they act funny with the honey.
 

fivehoursfree

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Yea, please post more info, like steeping temps and time. 5gallons batch I assume?
What kind of hops, how much and how long?
 

MikeRLynch

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I'm no expert on braggots, others here will have more info for you. I hate to plug another forum, but GotMead.com has some really good info in that regard. Do a search here in the mead forum for more info on braggot as a style first.

As far as process, what you've got is pretty solid, but instead of one pound of honey with 7.5 lbs lme I would go with four pounds honey and 3.5 to 4 lbs lme ( 5 gal batch), adding the honey late in the process (5 minutes to flameout) so you don't boil off all the aromatics. Hopping should be minimal, with mostly low alpha acid noble hops (hallertaur, tettnang, saaz, etc). A little yeast nutrient will go a long way, with fermentation being around 65 to 67 degrees.
 
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