Even before we moved over I had staked a claim on the storage room in our new flat as being my fermenting room and of course sorted out where to get my new brew kit - these very helpful guys in Columbia, South Carolina, as well as locating an ingredient supplier near Charlottesville.
My original intention was to brew a Red IPA, using Caramel 40 malt to add some colour and amarillo hops for those lovely citrusy flavours which I have really started to enjoy, not forgetting the East Kent Goldings hops for the flavour and aroma additions.
Back in November when Mrs Velkyal and I had the great pleasure of meeting the Beer Nut and Adeptus at the Bull and Castle in Dublin, they made me aware of Beertools.com, a handy little site for calculating recipes, which I use to get a general idea of what to expect from my ingredients.
Beertools told me to expect an OG of 1.057, however I ended up with only 1.045 - any thoughts on what caused the lack in OG would be much appreciated. Anyway, here is the recipe I used:
- 6lbs Muntons Extra Light DME
- 1lb American Caramel 40
- 2oz Amarillo hops, boiled 60 minutes
- 1oz East Kent Golding hops, 15 minutes
- 1oz East Kent Golding hops, 5 minutes
My yeast was from White Labs, the WLP023 Burton Ale, which was in a very nice vial and apparently didn't need a starter to cope with 5 gallons worth of wort. Sure enough this afternoon my wort has the beginnings of a lovely krausen on it and will hopefully produce a very nice American Pale Ale. Judging from the sample taken for the OG, it will be a copper coloured ale, so fingers crossed.
As I said I was planning to make a Red IPA, but the colour and gravity are slightly off hence the "re-branding" to an APA. Next time I will up the caramel malt to an 80 and use some C-hops for the Red IPA, but that has left me with a little problem regarding what to call my beer. Some thoughts bouncing around my head at the moment are:
- Copper Head Pale Ale
- Commonwealth Ale
- Ploughman's Delight
It is great to be brewing again.