Rule #1: Never brew in socks.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

The Belgian Black 9/17/11

A Belgian beer with a roasted coffee character, the Belgian Black is conceived as a dry, fruity, roasted beer unlike any made in the low countries or anywhere else. I don't know where the idea for this beer came, with its subtle flavors and unusual character. I normally try to put as much in a beer as possible; this time I held back. The Belgian Black is supposed to go down easy with a low final gravity and well balanced flavors. This is our first time here at Angry Monocle trying to combine Belgian yeast and roasted barley, and we can't wait to see how it comes out!

Batch Size: 2.5 gal
Boil Volume: 3.5 gal
Calculated OG: 1.063
Estimated FG: 1.011
ABV: 6.8
Calculated IBUs (Tinseth): 14
Pitching Temperature: 70F
Yeast: Wyeast 3787
Starter: none
Fermentation Vessel: Bucket

Malts Mashed Amount %
Roast Barley 0.25 6%
Other Fermentables Amount %
DME 3.1 81%
Cane Sugar 0.5 13%
Hops/Additions Amount Time AA%
UK Fuggles 0.25 10 4.5%
UK Fuggles 0.5 30 4.5%
UK Fuggles 0.25 0 4.5%

We were forced to use Fuggles after the our LHB shop was out of Styrian Goldings. The final batch size was closer to 2.3 gallons that 2.5, this was adjusted to 2.5 with the addition of the sugar 3 days after the boil.

Bottled on 9/29/11


Lee: This beer has the combination of sweet, approachable flavors and crisp dryness that makes Belgian ales so easy and enjoyable to drink. The Belgian yeast dominates the nose, while the roasted barley comes through in the finish. My only critique of the beer is that it feels a bit unbalanced. Next time I would raise the IBUs a bit.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Mash & Lauter Tun Build

Angry Monocle is going all-grain. Jack picked up an unused 5-gallon cylindrical cooler at a yard sale last month, and I finally got around to picking up the parts for it. So I spent a couple hours at Home Depot poring over the endless possibilities of brass fittings. I'm using a stainless steel braided hose to strain the wort off from the grains. The hose will be reinforced with copper wire, then looped onto a brass T fitting. The T is connected to a ball valve to which we will attach tubing when draining the wort. The cooler should be able to keep a near-constant 150F over the course of an hour, as required for a standard mash.

I'll post pictures when it's finished. Looking forward to experimenting with exotic base malts and adjuncts.