Beginner's Luck Brown Ale

Posted by Unknown | 12:01 AM | | 2 comments »

Photo by:mfjardo

This recipe can be found at
  • 4 lb malt extract syrup
  • 6 oz crystal malt
  • 1.5 oz black malt
  • 2 oz roasted barley
  • 1 oz flaked or rolled barley
  • 1 oz wheat malt
  • 2 oz Northern Brewer hops
  • 1 oz Goldings hops
  • 28 oz dark brown sugar
  • 2 oz lactose
  • ale yeast
Hops: these are two of the six or so types available here in the UK; I'm afraid I don't know what the US equivalents would be because I've been brewing only since my transplantation from the States in early '92. [If anyone knows a reasonable set of hops equivalencies, I`m all ears.] Northern Brewer is a very sharp hop that is a prime-requisite for British dark beers and stouts (and some pale ales); Goldings is a much "rounder" hop that is a prominent component of southern-English bitters. US brewers use yer best guesses, I guess. Procedure: I treat my water with 0.25 tsp salt per gallon to adjust pH; the water here (Bristol, in the SW) is fairly soft by UK standards but contains some dissolved CaCO3. I have had no difficulties whatever using tap water. I dissolve the malt extract and then boil the adjunct grains + hops in it for about an hour. I then strain a couple of kettlesful (kettlefuls?) of hot water into the primary through the spent grains and hops to rinse them. I dissolve the sugar in a couple of pints of warm water and add this to the wort, then top up with cold water to 5 gallons. When the wort is cool, I then measure OG (usually about 1035 to 1039), then add the lactose and pitch the (top-fermenting) yeast. The lactose gives just a hint of residual sweetness in the final brew; if that's not to your taste, omit it. This brew ferments to quarter-gravity stage in about 3 days when temperatures are about 20C (70F) and in about 5 days when temps are about 10C (mid-40s F). Final gravity is usually about 1005, resulting in ABV's of 4.5 to 5%. I prime my secondary fermentation vessel with about 1 tsp of dark brown sugar, and usually let it sit in the secondary 7 to 10 days, adding finings after the first 48 hours or so. I have not tried dry-hopping this recipe. I prime my bottles with 1/2 tsp of brewer's glucose; maturation is sufficiently complete in about 10 days, but obviously the longer the better.

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  1. K // 9:44 AM  

    Both Northern Brewer and Goldings are widely available here in the States. Nice looking mini-mash, I may have to give it a try.

  2. Unknown // 3:17 AM  

    Is the extrtact light or dark?