Belgian Pale/Single Ale

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The brew kettle got a rare night-time outing recently. I have found it difficult to spare the time to brew recently. Work and study seemingly have the monopoly at the moment. With my better half working a night shift this week, I found the perfect opportunity to get a brew on @broadfordbrewer style….#blackopsbrewing

I had a starter of WLP575 Belgian Ale Blend that I had been planning to bottle and store in the fridge as I hadn’t managed to use it. A quick 500ml of DME wort to get it started again while I was brewing and bobs your aunties live in lover…..it was going to be a Belgian brewnight.

I have been wanting to brew a Belgian Pale Ale/single for some time. The plan is to brew the pale ale and then use the yeast cake for something a bit higher OG, maybe a triple or golden strong.

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A trawl of the web later and I had the makings of a recipe. It is based on the recipe for Russian River Redemption from the Homebrew Talk forum. That recipe apparently comes straight from Vinnie Cilurzo himself.

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I tweaked it a bit, %’s and hops, and ended up with:

OG: 1.049
FG: 1.011
ABV: 5.0
Colour: 5.1SRM
IBU: 26
BU:GU : 0.54
Mash temp: 66oC

Grist

87% Belgian pale malt (Dingemans) Dingemans-Belgian-Specialty-Malts_600
4.3% Vienna Malt (Weyermann)
4.3% Acid malt (Weyermann)
4.3% Wheat Malt (Fawcett’s)

Hops

35g Styrian goldings (4.5%aa) 60 mins
70g Saaz (3.5%aa) 5 mins

Yeast

White Labs WLp575 – Belgian Style Ale Blend

This is my 1st time using the Dingemans pale malt. I have heard good things so I reckon this is as good a recipe as any to let me get a feel for it. I am also looking forward to seeing what the ale blend brings to the beer. I’m hoping for classic Belgian style phenolics & esters…..something tells me I won’t be disappointed.

Happy with the colour. Too pale for the BJCP guidelines for BPA, but fine for me!

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All in all it was an easy brewnight. Mashed in about 8pm and was in bed by 2am. I managed 24L so pitched 20L with wlp575, and the remaining 4L went into a demijohn with what I am hoping will become kind of a ‘house’ saison yeast……more on that another day though.

LB out 🙂

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UPDATE 09-04-2013

well, this fermentation hasn’t gone a smooth as I had hoped. It got cold one night and the yeast completely shut down at about 1.017/18 . It left the beer overly sweet and nowhere near the target of 1.011

So, out came the big metal spoon, up went the thermostat and fingers crossed I could get the little sods going again. After a day at 240C there was once again some signs of fermentation and a quick sample confirmed it had dropped to 1.014. That was 3 days ago and the air lock has been bubbling away to itself so I’m hoping it’s kept on trucking.

I tasted the sample once it had got going again and the sweetness had backed off opening up to some really nice fermentation characteristics. The esters were nice and soft, with notes of banana and bubble gum. The bittering has been reviled as well and I reckon will be bang on the money! Lets hope it hasn’t got infected with all these samples! 😀

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7 thoughts on “Belgian Pale/Single Ale

  1. I’ve still got them. these ones were a bit older! like the look of that brew. Can’t wait to try it. My bar beer has attenuated out now and is tasting better. Still not sure about the dry saison yeast. Not a characterfull as I had hoped. Gonna dry hop it and not worry too much about it. It’ll still be a good amber ale.

  2. Hi. I’m thinking about using your recipe to make some belgian ale. Question though: what does the acid malt add to the flavour? Do you think it could be omitted? I’ve got a 25kg sack of Dingemanns pale malt and I’;m desperate to use it up.

    • Hi. Cool beans! That dingemanns pale is awesome. In this recipe the acid malt is there just to lower tha mash pH as it is quite a pale grist. I think it will still add a slight sharpness and maybe help add a crispness to the beer but I also think that if you haven’t got any in you probably won’t miss it, at least it’ll still be a good beer without!

      Hope it goes well, let me know how it goes!

      Cheers

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