Autumn Red Ale (aka “CPA”)

Beer style: red ale
Target ABV: 4.7%
Hops: Green Bullet and Willamette
Ready for drinking: from 9 November 2014

An exciting day! One small final change to my mash tun and suddenly I’m extracting 50% more maltose from my malt. I’ve been farting around with mash temperatures and pHs and it turns out the geometry of my mash tun is the thing with the biggest impact. Today I added a small length of hose pipe to the outlet of my mashtun (on the inside) so the wort would be flow out from the centre of the container rather than the edge – and it has a massive impact on the wort. My run off started pouring out at 20 degree (brix) rather than 12 degrees!


Overall (assuming a healthy extract of 305 degree litres per kg for the malt) I’m achieving a 79% efficiency. Way better than the 53%  achieved just two weeks ago. Amazing. Such a simple change.insultaed bouler

So this week I’m doing a variation on the Charlotte’s Park Ale brewed a few weeks ago. Different hops, slightly different malts but a similar aim – a nice slightly smokey red ale. The smokeyness was a bit subtle last time so I’ve increased the level of rauchmalt. I’m also trying out some willamette hops for the first time.

I’ve also got a new set of bright red insulation sheets (usually used for insultating a hot water tank) but my idea was to insultate my boiler (aka. a tea urn) to try and increase the intensity of my boil. You’re supposed to have a really strong rolling boil but mine has always been a bit pathetic. Sadly it wasn’t as successful as I’d hoped. My boil was undoubtedly a lot more efficicent but no more vigorous. I will probably need to fiddle with the electronic thermostat in the boiler or something scary like that. An alternative would be to buy a paella gas burner and big pot… The brewshed is pretty full already. Do I really need a whole load more brewing kit?


One response »

  1. Erin says:

    I love the boiler’s little red jacket, it looks very cosy – very appropriate for autumn. The last red ale (Charlotte’s Park) was delicious, especially drinking it in the sunshine in Regent’s Park, so I’m looking forward to more of the same. Perhaps with some nice ham and cheese and pickle – I think this beer might go with a Ploughman’s lunch.

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