Completely uncreative name. I needed a pale ale, this was the first one I brewed in 2019, this is what I got. This batch was a bit of a mutt, with pilsner malt as most of the grist, American hops, and Nottingham yeast. I basically wanted to play around with ingredients, and see what a pale ale outside of the norm might be like.
Pale Ale 2019
- 5 lb. 14 oz. Barke pilsner malt (Weyermann)
- 2 lb. 15 oz. Vienna malt (Great Western)
- 1 lb. 12 oz. 2-row malt (Rahr)
- 8 oz. Crystal 40 (Great Western)
- 2 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.5% alpha est.), 60 minute boil
- 2 oz. Cascade whole hops (5.5% alpha est.), 1 minute boil
- 1 Whirlfloc tablet, 10 minute boil
- 1 pkg. Nottingham yeast (Lallemand)
- 2 oz. Simcoe hop pellets (13.6% alpha), dry hop in keg
- 1 oz. Centennial hop pellets (9.3% alpha), dry hop in keg
- 60 minute infusion mash, 152°, no sparge
- 1.049 o.g., 1.011 f.g., 4.9% abv, 39 IBU, 6 SRM
- Claremont tap water, augmented with 5 g of epsom salt and 2 g of calcium chloride.
- I mashed in with 7.5 gallons of water at 165°, to hit a mash temperature of 158°. It was too hot, so I dropped in a frozen water bottle.
- The mash was down to 153.6° after 40 minutes. I elected to do a 45 minute mash with this batch.
- I collected 6.5 gallons of runnings with a gravity of 1.043, for 69% mash efficiency. This is slightly lower than if I had done a batch sparge, so no surprises here.
- I brought the runnings to a boil, adding hops and other ingredients per the recipe.
- After 60 minutes, I chilled to 70°, transferred with aeration, and pitched the yeast. Starting gravity was 1.050.
- I brewed this beer on 5 January 2019, and fermented at 67°.
- I kegged the beer on 24 January 2019. Final gravity was 1.015, down from 1.050, for 4.6% abv.
- Clear, gold beer, with a persistent white head that continues as an even blanket over the surface of the beer.
- Hop-forward aroma, with citrus and piney notes.
- Moderately bitter, with a flavor tipped towards the hoppy side. The tropical and citrus aspects of the hops come through, although there isn’t much in the way of malt flavor.
- Mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side for my preference. Carbonation is appropriate for the style, and the finish is nicely rounded.
- Would I brew this again?
- Probably not, at least in its current form. Pilsner malt just doesn’t make for a pale ale in my flavor wheelhouse, so I might swap that for 2-row. The hop profile is dead-on perfect, especially for a good springtime pale ale. This beer has improved greatly as it matured–I didn’t care for it at all when first kegged, and now it is a pretty drinkable brew.