Monday, March 30, 2009

Belgian Pale Ale sleeps, saison is in the mail

Well, the Belgian-style Pale Ale I brewed a few weeks ago is bottled and resting comfortably in 22-ounce bottles and one giant (1-liter) swingtop. Half the batch is in the de facto beer cellar at my friend Ryan's house and the other half is in my kitchen. It's probably about 67 degrees in the basement and 75 in the kitchen. It'll be interesting to see how these bottles compare and which ones I like more. I'm guessing the bottles kept at the warmer temperature will have more esters. Whether that's a good thing remains to be seen. I'm letting the beer sit at least another week (which will be about three weeks of conditioning) before I crack one open.

Meanwhile, I'm waiting on some ingredient from William's Brewing. I'm trying out a new Belgian extract that is 90 percent two-row Belgian Pale and 10 percent wheat. I'll be making a saison with this extract along with perhaps a little bit (5 percent or less) of sugar to enhance the dryness. So far I'm not thinking of adding any spices; just the Wyeast 3724 yeast. I've also purchased some Wyeast 3522 that I'd like to try brewing a Grisette (low alcohol saison) with that would be packaged in a Party Pig or two and maybe some bottles. I've been reading about Grisette, a version of saison, in the book Farmhouse Ales: Culture and Craftmanship in the Belgian Tradition by Phil Markowski. It's a really great book if your'e intrested in brewing saisons or even if you're a fan. Pictured is my "Saison Morency" from last year.

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