Saturday, October 1, 2011

Recipe Recap: #21 - #25

Today's Recipe Recap will cover brews #21 through #25. There were 3 rebrews - all disappointing. There were a lot of problems and disappointments here. It almost feels like my brewing is going backward. A big part of it was using harvested yeast and having a hard time controlling fermentation quality during the summer.

#21, Firestone Walker Union Jack IPA Clone 2.0
The result was definitely better than the first. However, I got way too much ester and phenol character, and what I'm pretty sure was chlorophenols, which eventually went away. The flavor was okay, but never quite right. Carbonation was great, but the beer wasn't nearly dry enough. I was discouraged enough to never bother with this recipe again.

#22, Janet's Brown Ale 2.0
Well, this one was mistakenly made with pale chocolate malt, and that made it completely different. Without the mild roast of the chocolate, this one just didn't taste right. On top of that, it was way overcarbed, maybe due to underattenuation. No roast at all, pretty much just bready and hoppy. Disappointing. Entered this one in competition because I ran out of Sweet Stout - didn't expect it to do well and it didn't. It was slammed for too much carbonation and lack of roast, among other things.

Still, I'll probably try this again eventually.

#23, Pliny the Elder Clone 2.0
This was a huge improvement over the first attempt, but it still only sorta tasted like Pliny, and I couldn't come anywhere near the dryness of Pliny. The greater sweetness of my version blocked some of perception of bitterness, so it didn't seem that hoppy (despite the obscene amount included in the recipe). I entered one in competition, but lost a lot of points because most of hops had dropped out due to age, making it seem sweeter and revealing flaws in fermentation. It was pretty damn great early on, and has convinced me to throw my IPAs into the refrigerator as soon as they are carbed.

#24, Heretic Evil Twin Clone
An infected disaster. This infection may have continued into batch #26. First time I've feared for my health due to a bottle bomb infection. Maybe I'll try making this again someday, but I'm not really sure just yet.

#25, McQuaker's Oatmeal Stout
Pretty awesome, despite its flaws. Would've been better with fresher, healthier yeast, lower carbonation and a bit more sweetness and mouth feel. I will be rebrewing this with my own tweaks to make it my own recipe and correct its flaws.