Thursday, August 27, 2009
Friday, May 8, 2009
It’s early May and we’re just getting our heads clear from our annual jaunt to the Craft Brewers Conference. This year’s host was the fine city of Boston so there was plenty of Smuttynose flowing throughout town. Luckily the week went without incident and we managed to lose Judi just that one time. We return to blistering weather where we hit 95 degrees in April. Thankfully, we have this year’s Summer Weizen ready to go. The evolution of this beer continues with an addition of chamomile flowers into the end of the boil. We got the idea from our resident cask master, JT. He made a few firkins of Summer Weizen last year that he tea-bagged with chamomile, adding a beautiful and piquant twist on one of our favorite beers.
Our Short Batch Series will soon have another offering. We currently have a Belgian style Triple conditioning on about 25 lbs. of oak chips. The beer’s tasting great right now. The oak character is just starting to show, but there’s a huge fruit nose from the Chimay yeast we used. The grain bill utilized a good amount of Weyermann Pilsner malt as well as some Munich and Wheat malts. We dried it out with the addition of cane sugar, and the beer should finish around 10% ABV. We’re hoping to have it ready in about a month so you should be seeing it out and about this summer.
Friday, January 30, 2009
Last fall I received an invite from Dave Brodrick to help celebrate the marriage to his beautiful wife, Iris. Dave (of Blind Tiger renown) asked me to brew a beer for the event. Happy to oblige, I tossed around the idea of several different styles but kept coming back to late-addition hoppy beers. I knew I wanted a session beer for the wedding and had recently been enjoying the Brooklyner Schneider Hopfen Weiss. I wasn’t looking for a beer quite that strong and so dialed back the starting gravity to be inline with a more traditional hefeweizen. The beer itself ended up with a bit too much banana character from the yeast as the ’Shire was hit with a massive ice storm the day after we brewed. We lost power for a day and a half (even that wasn’t too bad as some folk were out of power for weeks) which caused a warmer fermentation than desired. Instead of a nice mix of fruit and clove, it was definitely skewed toward the banana character, but the huge, floral notes of the hops actually balance quite nicely. Think Juicy Fruit. All in all, I think it’s an excellent beer.
Dry Hop: Sterling & Centennial
S.G. 15° Plato