Archive for the ‘English Mild’ Category

Orfy’s Mild Mannered Ale

Posted: February 21, 2011 in English Mild

Orfy’s Mild Mannered Ale
4.60 lbs Maris Otter (Muntons 3L)
1.36 lbs Crystal II (Pauls Malts 62-68L)
0.27 lbs UK Chocolate (Pauls Malts 415-490L)
1.00 oz Fuggles 4.2% (45 mins)
0.85 oz Fuggles 4.2% (15 mins)
1.00 tsp Irish Moss (10 mins)
0.50 tsp Yeast Nutrient (10 mins)
1 Package Nottingham Yeast (rehyrdrated)

Mash @158ºF with 8.0 qts of water.  Mash out with 8.0 qts water.  Sparge with 3 gallons of water.  I preheated my mash tun with hot water from my basement sink.  Heated strike water to 185ºF.  Beersmith recommended 170ºF.  It ended up at about 180ºF.  I frantically added some cool water and an ice cube to bring temp down so as no enzymatic processes would be hurt by the higher mash temp.  I don’t usually preheat my tun, but found that I can probably strike with what Beersmith tells me if I preheat it well enough.

Collected about 5.9 gallons after sparge.  Topped off with water to about 6.2 gallons pre-boil.  Pitched yeast @70ºF and have it sitting in basement at ambient temp of 63ºF.  Shook carboy for 5 mins to properly aerate.  Going to carb @1.6 volumes CO2.

Expected OG = 1.037
OG = 1.037 (80.2%)
FG = 1.017
ABV = 2.6%
IBU = 23.2
SRM = 20.3

02/21/11 – I originally brewed  few really big beers and kegged them when I first built my kegerator.  As time went on, I realized how hard it was to finish off a keg of 9.6% dIPA, 8% cider, and 8.5% honey/strawberry/hefe.  The concept of making small beers seemed absolutely foreign to me over the past year.

I’ve been reading “Radical Brewing” and came across a section on English Milds.  A style of beer I’ve heard of, but never have had the pleasure of trying.  They’re full bodied, low alcohol, sessionable beers full of malty flavors intertwined with toffee and chocolate.  It wasn’t until reading about this type of beer that I realized how awesome the concept of a small beer was.  I can make something full of flavor that isn’t a chore to drink (In addition to this way of thinking I also brewed a Dry Stout for St.Patty’s day).

After some researching, I came up with a rough recipe.  I kept changing my mind on a few things and would tweak it every day.  I intended upon using Mild Ale malt (a malt made from British Pale malts) as the base malt.  It is the most historically correct malt to use, but a lot of people use Maris Otter nowadays as a reasonable substitute as Mild Ale malt is hard to come by.  I was then going to flavor with English Crystal malt and a little bit of Black malt and a bit of biscuit/amber too.

But, after much tweaking, I decided to put my recipe on hold for the time being.  I realized that since I’ve never tasted an English Mild, I better brew one that I know is going to be according to style first.  So, I found Orfy’s recipe from  Orfy is a regular member on the forums over there and has a good reputation for brewing English styles.  I am brewing Orfy’s recipe exact.  The only thing I changed was I am using Crystal II (62-68L) instead of Crystal 60L (which are essentially the same thing), and I’m using less Maris Otter to account for my higher efficiency.  I also adjusted it down to a 5 gallon recipe as Orfy’s is for ~6 gallons.

I’m going to let this ferment out 7-10 days and keg right away.  This is a style meant to be drunk young and I have all intentions of doing that.

02/27/11 – Wasn’t much of a krausen and most yeast dropped out after a few days.  Checked this today and it was 1.020…not really as far as it should have gone.  Nottingham usually ferments fast, but this was @63ºF in the basement so maybe it was too cold.  The Nottingham package also didn’t have an expiration date on it (and I’ve gotten expired yeast from the homebrew store before).  So, I moved it upstairs to my room where its temp should raise a bit.  It also might have just been moving slower in the basement cold.  Hopefully will be where it’s supposed to be in a week.

03/01/11 – Went to the beer store yesterday and troubleshooted with the guy.  He didn’t think my initial high mash temp would have affected anything as conversion occurred.  He suggested that I swirl it up to reintroduce the settled yeast into the beer.  I also bought a packet of s-04 in case that didn’t work.  But, after sitting in my room for 24 hours @70-73ºF and having been stirred there is some activity going on in the carboy and some CO2 escaping from the airlock.  I’m guessing this did the trick and the yeast just got sleepy from something or another and dropped out in the colder temps.  They are living creatures and, just like anything else, won’t always act the same.  Hopefully this will bring the gravity down to an acceptable level.

03/02/11 – Gravity only dropped to 1.018-1.019…repitching a new packet of rehydrated Nottingham (Lot #1089001V Exp 10/2012).

03/05/11 – Got it down to 1.017.  Apparently because of the high mash temps, most people have a hard time getting this down past 1.015-1.016, so I don’t feel half bad about where I ended up.  A little less alcohol than planned, but still tastes chocolately and great.  Excellent body for such a low ABV beer and amazing taste.  I’ll just be able to have more in one sitting.  Kegging tonight @1.6 volumes of CO2.