This is the last beer I brewed before moving to Myanmar, which involved selling the larger part of my brewing gear. Therefore it was kind of a big deal. This beer was also an attempt to use up left over ingredients, mainly my last couple of kilograms of grain. Unfortunately I didn’t have enough fermentables for a 20l batch, so I bought a beer kit for $10 and added that in. This is the first kit brew I’ve done in a while – thankfully it tastes OK. Not great, but good enough. Kinda.
The recipe was an attempt at a basic dry pale ale full of malt and little else.
Not So Clean Ale
1044 OG, 1005 FG. 5.4% bottle ABV. US-05. Canberra water, from tap.
Fermented at 17°C from:
58% :: Coopers Draught Beer Kit
42% :: Ale Malt
40m single infusion mash at 65°C.
20m boil, no hop additions (kit is pre-hopped) but yeast nutrient added at ten minutes.
The beer looks lovely, a rich, beautiful bronze colour with perfect clarity. In fact, I mistook the first bottle for a golden apple cider batch I did previously – it’s that kind of bold bronze. The aroma wafts biscuit, apple and cloves in equal measures; the clove-phenolic presence perniciously detracting from the overall bouquet. The beer’s carbonation is low to medium, with little retention. Typical of a Canberra winter fermentation.
On tasting a clean, full, malty hit disappears quickly with a thin dry finish. Very low bitterness. Malt is pancakes and biscuits, but like the aroma it is beleaguered – this time by fusels. The hot burn brackets the rest of the profile so as to not entirely ruin the beer, rather to simply restrict it from greatness.
So, an eminently drinkable beer held back by some clove and fusels. As it is, a pint at a time I think. Alas!
The fusels and phenols could be coming from anywhere – and given I am in mourning of much of my brewing gear, I don’t want to diagnose. Alas.