Well, it's that time of the year again, to empty out one of our barrels. The Wee Heavy we made about 13 months ago, since going sour, is ready for bottling. Since we've abandoned the idea of aging anything clean in the barrel, we needed to decide what kind of beer would do well souring and absorbing any bourbon flavor that is left. The Wee has turned out really well with a nice mingling of funk, sour, oak and bourbon. The ideas first thrown out were: tripel (a la Allagash Curieux), robust/baltic porter, stout or barleywine. The first was quickly abolished because none of us (myself excluded) are huge fans of Allagash's, barleywine is just too close to the Wee, so it was down to stout and porter. We all agreed that a Baltic or Rubust porter would be best for long aging (higher abv, roasted malts), and that it was not as rich as a stout (Imperial or otherwise). Finally, we decided that using lager yeast, as in traditional production of a Baltic, would be just too tricky as it needs longer time and some of us (okay, just me) don't have good temperature control. The recipe is very simple, and most of us used US05 since it ferments quickly, is pretty clean, and cheap. Barrel date is set for this Saturday, March 20, should be exciting!
Batch Size: 5.70 gal
Boil Size: 8.30 gal
Estimated OG: 1.077 SG
Estimated Color: 38.2 SRM
Estimated IBU: 24.1 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 67.50 %
Boil Time: 75 Minutes
Amount Item Type % or IBU
15.50 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 84.24 %
1.25 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (40.0 SRM) Grain 6.79 %
0.90 lb Chocolate Malt (350.0 SRM) Grain 4.89 %
0.75 lb Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM) Grain 4.08 %
2.00 oz Williamette [4.50 %] (75 min) Hops 24.1 IBU
US05 (1.5 packets)
3/03/10: Brewed today after getting my Barley Crusher functioning again. Mashed quite high, about 158-159 since I was using the beast known as US05 and we wanted plenty of residual sugar for the bugs. Fermenting in the low 50s. No problems, ended up with better, but still poor efficiency.
3/17/10: After a very quiet fermentation, gravity is down to 1.020, but there may be some more left in it since the ambient temp is in the upper 50s, to near 60.