As winter approaches, and the mercury drops, I find myself wanting a strong beer. For whatever reason I’m thinking, American Strong Ale?
Is that a real thing? Whatever. I’m imagining something that’s golden in color and malt-forward. Maybe in the form of a Single-Malt and Single-HOP(SMASH) beer? Lets make something up.
5 Gallon batch
Grain Bill: 14lbs. American 2-Row Barley
Hops: 2oz. Centennial @ 60 minutes
Yeast: Wyeast 1332 Northwest Ale
Mash Single Infusion 152 for 60minutes
Now, I’m imagining something that has a lot of body and smooth malt flavor. But of course, I’m not expert.
My kettle is too small. I know this. I’ve been working on upgrading my original 3gallon setup, which was a bucket inside another bucket, to a serviceable 5gallon batch system. Thus far, that consists of a 10gallon Igloo cooler with a false bottom, and a 6gallon stainless steel kettle. In order to boil this considerably larger volume of liquid, and to take my brewing out of the house, my latest addition is a Dark Star 2.0 propane burner. This gives me a lot of heating power, which I can ignorantly underestimate.
As the wort reached a boil, it was still at full blast(a rookie mistake). And of course I was boiling 5.5gallons of wort in a 6gallon kettle. I realize that sounds like a dumb thing to do, and it is. But bigger pots are expensive and will have to wait. So in a matter of moments, as I watched in horror and fumbled for the burner control, more than 1.5gallons of wort boiled over the pot’s rim in a matter of seconds. Shit.
Well, I’ve still got 3.5gallons of wort, now with hops and cooled for fermenting, so we’ll make due eh? I measured the gravity at 1.080, around my target, but my volume is too low. I think that I’d rather drink more beer than have the strong stuff, and so I add 1.5gallons of boiled and cooled water. Siphoned into fermenter and yeast pitched.
The new gravity is 1.050, and we’ll see what happens.