When I came back from a trip this summer, a month away from home, I had a lot of beer in my cellar that I had brewed in May and June and that had begun to lose its most appealing characteristics. Less hoppy IPAs, slightly off wheat, overly tangy Farmhouse ale, and a brown ale that, while brown, never really tasted how I wanted.
In the past few weeks I’ve begun brewing in earnest (as you might have been able to tell from my posts). About three weeks ago I brewed half batches (2.5 Gal) of an American Pale Ale and a Sweet Stout. Both were based upon the guidelines in Brewing Classic Styles. The stout was okay, though I may have mis calculated the hops, because it’s bitter. It’s also not got the body I want in a stout.
But the APA? I have to say, I’m very happy with it. Light hops on the nose, but less so on the palate. An APA is a mellower version of the American IPA, which is a much hoppier version of the British classic. This APA will be a crowd pleaser, I can tell. Not too bitter to turn people off, but with enough character to satisfy those of us who are beer snobs. I only wish I had done a full batch, because I only have about 25 left.
Meanwhile, the IPA continues to ferment away, and the raspberry porter, too. They are both about a week from the next steps–I’ll bottle the porter, and rack the IPA to a secondary fermenter so I can dry hop it (put new hops into the mix to add more hop flavour and mostly aroma). After that, who knows? I have a pumpkin porter recipe I’m going to try, but need to get my hands on a few pounds of pumpkin.
In the back of my head is the niggling reminder that my Russian Imperial Stout remains flat.
Well, life’s not perfect.