It was this gingerbread house tradition that we had as kids which has inspired my Christmas beer this year, and the fact that until I go all-grain in my home brewing, I would have problems with my original intentions of making a dark top-fermented Baltic Porter in the style of Nøgne Ø's fantastic Christmas beer. I also wanted to use a French hop as a nod to the fact that my parents now life in the Limousin area of France, so I am using Strisselspalt in the brew.
The recipe is as follows:
- 1.3kg Amber DME
- 250g Caramel 80
- 1/4 tsp crushed cloves, boiled 10 minutes
- 1/4 tsp grated ginger, boiled 10 minutes
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon, boiled 10 minutes
- 15g sweet orange peel, boiled 10 minutes
- 30g Strisselspalt @ 60 minutes
- 15g Strisselspalt @ 15 minutes
- 15g Strisselspalt @ 5 minutes
- Wyeast Belgian Abbey II
I am hoping for an OG of 1.048, and eventually an ABV of 4.5%. Brewing is scheduled tentatively for next Wednesday as I will be bottling my Machair Stout on Tuesday once it has had two weeks in the carboy. Given a couple of weeks in the primary fermenter followed by being in bottles for about 5 weeks before Christmas itself, I am hoping that everything will work out well.
The name for my new beer? Biere d'épices!