Extract Brew Number 2: Troutbeck Bitter

September 19, 2009

All my previous brews have been quite high in ABV (6-7.5%) & bottled so I fancied doing a session ale & kegging it just for a change. So I bought a King Keg Bottom Tap pressure barrel & two tins of Coopers LME. So what recipe to follow?
I’ve been reading the book How To Brew by John Palmer which has proved to be both informative & inspirational. The author is American so all the units for the recipes have to be converted to Litres & grammes unfortunately, & some of the hops are a bit hard to find in the UK, but it really is a great book. All the recipes contained are for extract as well as all grain & are geared towards doing an 11 Litre boil with half of your extract & all of your hops. The remainder of the extract is added on flame off to sterilise where upon the wort is topped up to the final volume in the fermentor after cooling. Anyway, here’s my recipe, based John Palmer’s Lord Crouchbacks Best Bitter. Hopefully I’ll get a hoppy, English ale around 4.6% ABV.

Troutbeck ESB

3kg Light LME
300g Crystal Malt

Hops                                                                IBU
Styrian Goldings   3.3%AA   60’   39.2g   17
Styrain Goldings   3.3%AA   30’     9g        3
East Kent Goldings 4%AA    30’    27g      8
East Kent Goldings 4%AA    15’    27g       7

1 x Safale04

Boil Gravity (11Litres): 1040
Original Gravity (19Litres): 1047

Total Cost £20.76; 0.63p per pint.

This was not my original recipe! As usual something went wrong on brewday. I had intended to use a pack of Herkules hops at 15.8% AA as the bittering component. I’d scored these off EBay but when I opened the packet I was particularly unimpressed by their aroma and dryness. Not a patch on the ones I get foil packed from Morris Hanbury. I rarely get a chance to brew so I nipped to the freezer for an alternative. All I had was a half pack of Styrians! What a waste! Anyway, I couldn’t risk it so re-calculated the IBU & threw them in.
All fine, except from the wort chilling. Took about an hour in the sink in an ice bath. I’ll have to ask for a wort chiller for Christmas… Once again I just left all the hops in. My hop strainer will take care of them when I rack off into the barrel. The make a fine head on top of the yeast though!

Hops floating on the yeast head.

Hops floating on the yeast head.

If they’re still there in a week or so I may skim them off.  I suppose it’s a bit like dry hopping.  Smells lovely too!

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