Beer Recipes/Award-Winning Home Brew Recipes
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| Rye saison with brettanomyces
Brewers: Jacques Alcabes and Mathias Willner
Style: Rye saison with brettanomyces
Competition results: Third place in the Belgian specialty ale category of Homebrew Alley 6 (2012)
Partial-mash recipe, 5-gallon batch size
Original gravity: 1.065
Final gravity: 1.015
Bitterness: 31.5 IBU
Alcohol by volume: 6.7 percent
3 pounds rye malt
2.5 pounds Belgian pilsner malt
1 pound brown Belgian candi sugar
0.5 pounds CaraWheat Malt
3.5 pounds extra-light dry malt extract
0.75 ounces Chinook hops (14.1 percent AA), 50 minutes
1 ounce East Kent Golding hops (5.7 percent AA), 15 minutes
.5 ounces Chinook hops (14.1 percent AA), 2 minutes
2 vials of White Labs WLP565 Belgian Saison I Ale
1 vial of White Labs WLP650 Brettanomyces Bruxellensis
2 packs (WLP565) in primary fermentation but no yeast starter. Rocked carboy. Yeast nutrient and whirlfloc tablet for last 10 minutes of the boil.
1 pack of WLP650 in secondary
Mash grains for 60 minutes at 150 degree F, and boil wort for 90 minutes.
Fermentation: Pitch two vials of White Labs WLP565 yeast, rock the fermenter to aerate, and ferment for 3 weeks before racking to secondary and adding Brettanomyces and 2 ounces of oak that have been soaking in rye whiskey for about a week. (Also dump in the rye.) Allow eight weeks for secondary fermentation before kegging or bottling.
Brewer's notes: The idea was to try to get something spicy and funky, as if you had licked the side of a horse stable for some reason, but it turned out to be cleaner than expected. The yeasts worked well together, and with the rye and oak no single flavor was too overpowering. Adding the brettanomyces after primary fermentation limited the funk to a more modest level. To me, this type of experimental beer is about two things. One, starting with a unique idea and an interesting flavor profile to develop. And two, balance—many of my beers that start as odd experiments come out way too strong in one aspect or another; I don't really know any formula for this, though it's some combination of experience and luck.