Thursday, June 27, 2013

Revisiting the Dragon Slayer

Tonight I'm tasting a beer I brewed almost three years ago. I ended up calling it Dragon Slayer Ale. I intended it be sort of a cross between quadruple and a double IPA. It's all pilsner and wheat malt extract with some cane sugar and 12 ounce of hop in five-gallon batch. I added:

2 ounces Chinook pellets at 11.5% AA for 60 mins
3 ounces Chinook pellets for 30 mins
1 ounce of Chinook pellets for 10 mins
3 ounces of Crystal whole hops for 5 mins
3 ounces of Sytrian Goldings dry hopped for 20 days
Needless to say, at this point the hops have faded quite a bit. Although the aroma is very earthy and woody which I attribute to the hops. Aside from this character, I also get some marzipan in the nose and taste it as well. It's also a bit dry at this point and just a touch tart with sort of a chewy maltiness right before the finish. As noted previously it reminds me a bit of Rogue Old Crustacean Barleywine, but in this case an old bottle, not a fresh one. I've lost some of my notes on this beer, but based on the ingredients list it was around 11-12 percent alcohol. Definitely the the strongest beer I've made. Despite it's strength it's not boozy at all, but the strength is noticeable in the head. There are some caramel notes that seem to compliment the other flavors well. I think I need to more batches like this that get squirreled away. It really is quite tasty. One part northwest U.S. barelywine, one part Old Ale and one part quadruple, but all good!
This poor neglected blog. I just haven't had the right time slot (or money) to brew much in the last couple months. I'm spending too much money on commercial beer I guess, but there's so much out there right now and going out is so much more fun than staying home and drinking homebrew.

The last beer I brewed was a French Saison that turned out pretty good. I have maybe half the batch left. It turned out a little fuller-bodied than I hoped. I'd like to try the recipe again without as much wheat or perhaps without wheat altogether. The grain bill included 12.5 percent flaked wheat, but I also used two pounds of wheat DME. Perhaps sticking to the flaked wheat next time might make the difference. The late hop character is also lacking. I would probably also dry hop with Sorachi Ace (the single hop I used) or at least add some at the end of the boil, instead of just a flavor addition at 15 minutes. Live and learn I guess. Still a decent beer and nothing horribly wrong with it.