Isolation Ale Clone

20161119_204044Another winter beer! Thumbing through the November 2016 issue of Brew Your Own, I ran across a clone recipe for Odell Brewing Company’s Isolation Ale. I can’t say I’ve ever sampled the beer myself, but the description of a rich, malty British strong ale (which isn’t a complete alcohol bomb) had me intrigued. This is the perfect brew to balance out my winter line-up!

The recipe I am brewing here is pretty similar to what was in BYO, with a few minor changes to account for my system’s efficiency and the ingredients I have on-hand. I decreased the amount of Maris Otter by a quarter pound, increased the mild malt by a quarter pound, and decreased the Vienna malt by a half pound. Additionally, I opted for an all-Cascade hopping, which better accommodates my hop stash (I really, really don’t need to buy any more hops!). Finally, I swapped out liquid yeast (WLP007) for dry yeast (SafAle S04), because my local shop had just run out of WLP007 on the day I stopped by.

Isolation Ale Clone

  • 4 lbs. Maris Otter pale malt
  • 3 lbs. mild malt – Ashburne (Briess)
  • 2.5 lbs. Vienna malt (Weyermann)
  • 1 lb. Munich malt
  • 0.75 lb. 90°L caramel 6-row malt (Briess)
  • 0.5 lb. 10°L caramel malt (Briess)
  • 0.25 lb. 120°L caramel malt (Briess)
  • 0.25 lb. 45°L crystal light malt (Crisp)
  • 1 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.1% alpha), 60 minute boil
  • 1 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.1% alpha), 40 minute boil
  • 1 WhirlFloc tablet, 10 minute boil
  • 2 pkg. SafAle English Ale dry yeast (S-04)

Target Parameters

  • 152° mash, 60 minutes
  • 1.062 o.g., 1.016 f.g., 6.1% abv, 30 IBU, 15 SRM, 5.5 gallons into the fermenter


  • I mashed in with 4.8 gallons of water at 168.5°, to hit a mash temperature of 153°. I let it sit for 60 minutes (at which point it had declined to around 150°), and added 0.86 gallons of water at 185°. After 10 minutes, I vorlaufed and collected the first runnings. Then, I added another 3.5 gallons of water at 185°, let sit for 10 minutes, vorlaufed, and collected the second runnings.
  • In total, I collected 6.8 gallons of wort with a gravity of 1.050, for 75% mash efficiency.
  • During the 60 minute boil, all hop and other ingredients were added per the schedule above.
  • After flame-out, I chilled the wort to 76°, transferred to the fermenter, and pitched the yeast. I will ferment at 67° for the first three days, and then raise the temperature to 70° for the remainder of fermentation.
  • Starting gravity was 1.061. This was a great brew session, in terms of how closely I hit my targets! I consider this well within the margin of error for my measuring equipment. I brewed this up on 19 November 2016.