Thursday, March 27, 2008

Tasting all things red that I've homebrewed, which is a red ale that is aging quite nicely in Party Pig and has probably at its peak. This red ale is rather hoppy up front, no doubt due to the addition of about a half ounce dry hops in the Party Pig. The beer is quite delicious and I had to keep myself from consuming more than a few pints. I'm rather pleased with this beer, especially with the performance of the Fermentis S-04 dry yeast. The beer is fairly clean, with just enough residual sweetness to play well with the hops. The S-04 clears very well, too. I definitely think the Fermentis yeasts are big improvement over the dry yeasts from 10 or 15 years ago.

Pictured to the right is Montmorency Ale. It's not quite red; maybe more pink. It was a five gallon batch brewed with one gallon of Montmorency tart cherry juice. No sweet cherries here; just tart ones and it shows - this beer has a tart character that I think is just about right. The nose is tart cherry, but there's also some lactic notes and phenolics from the yeast (although I think the lactic character could be from the cherries); almost a smokiness. The mouthfeel is fairly creamy once the carbonation settles, but the carbonation takes awhile to settle. The head is very impressive, too, with spun sugar bits sticking to the sides of the glass. I'm not sure how I achieved this, perhaps it just the yeast - Wyeast 3822 Ingelmunster Ale.

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