Thursday, February 12, 2009

Question for the Brewers

Saturday is pencilled in as my first brewing day, the beer being made will be 16 litres of an "imperial smoked mild" - not a big batch I know, and a slightly odd style.

But this is my question, is dry hopping with Saaz hop pellets a good idea or not?


  1. Is this the first time you've ever brewed? Sorry if I missed that post.

    If so, I guess I would try something with less variables for the first batch. Simple recipes can make delicious beer. Especially when it comes to English Milds (of course I'm an American and I've never stepped foot into an English Pub).

  2. Imperial and mild seems somewhat contradictory to me...sounds like you've taken on a lot for your first brew, but hey...relax don't worry!

    I think the delicate aroma of Saaz may be a bit lost in this beer - though just guessing at your malt and hop bill. Save it to dry hop your first Pils. I'm guessing the Imperial Mild might be overpowering. Also, you might want to master the rest of the process before you start dry hopping...

    If you still want to dry hop, just drop in the pellets a couple days after vigorous fermentation is complete...let 'em sit on it for 2 weeks or so. They should settle out, just be careful when racking off...

    Brew on...

  3. If you do ever wish to dry hop with pellets, I'd recommend using a sanitised hop bag or muslin bag, especially if you have to syphon your beer out. The bits will clog the crap out of it. A lesson I learnt once :)

    I'd also skip the dry hopping on this one as you probably want the malt and smoke to be the stars, and as Jeff said, the Saaz may be lost in it.

  4. I think you will lose the subtle flavours from the Saaz in the malty roasted characters from the mash. Best to use the hops in a lighter beer

  5. Thank you all for your input! So no dry-hopping of this beer.

    I know Imperial Mild sounds like a contradiction in terms, but I really can't think of an alternative term, but wouldn't be surprised if the beer falls into the 90/- Scottish ale category when all is said and done.

    Roll on Saturday!

  6. In most Milds, the malt character is the star and hops are generally used only for balanced bittering. While most Milds are low alcohol affairs, an historic "Mild" (say from the 1820s) could certainly be in the OG range of 1.058 to 1.100 and could include smoked malt, so if that is the desired style, it's not contradictory at all.

    I would not dry hop this beer, though. I am making a mild on Monday, myself. Perhaps a swap is in order...

    Have fun!


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