What the fuggle is a fuggle?

A few months ago I went to dinner with my editor, Melissa, at a great brewpub in Toronto, the Granite.  Reading through the beer list she asked me “what’s a fuggle?”  I explained it’s a classic British hop.  She said she liked the name.  This makes sense: editors are word people!  I silently decided “what better motivation to brew a beer than to ply your editor with bitter?”  Not that I need an excuse, but I certainly like inspiration.

After doing a little research, including a trip to the UK (okay, this was not specifically to prepare for brewing–I was going there anyway), I formulated a recipe and got to work.

  • 3.5lb Maris Otter
  • 1/2 Lb Cdn 2-row malt
  • 6 oz Belgian biscuit
  • 6oz 40L Crystal
  • 1.7oz 120L Crystal (I had this laying around)

Once I got that mashed and into the pot, I added:

  • 0.25oz Fuggles (60min)
  • 0.35 oz English Kent Goldings (EKG) (60min)
  • 0.15 oz EKG (20 min)
  • 0.70 oz Fuggles (20 min)
  • 0.30 oz Fuggles (2 min)

Why the combined hop schedules and strange proportions?  I was working with limited amounts (I had an extra 1/2 oz EKG laying around) and wanted more complexity than just Fuggles.  But I did want to feature Fuggles in the final version.

It is now fermenting on a speciality WYeast–the British Cask Ale yeast.  Can’t remember the number.  I plan to use that yeast again to brew a bigger ESB.

The jury is out on whether Melissa will like it, but if it’s good… she’ll get a 6-pack.  If it’s bad, she’ll get a 24.  I’m selfish that way.

Draining the tun. Clearly, to make it more authentically English, I'm mimicking Prince William's hair style.


About danmalleck

Medical historian and jack-of-all-trades curmudgeon. I tend to ramble about politics, social incivility, and our self-centred culture more interested in buying the next cool ringtone or LED TV than actively engaging in the sorts of discussions and issues that matter. The more opportunity we have to buy more stuff, the less concern there is, it seems, in politics, social justice and let's face it, basic human decency, unless those things actually can save us money or get us more things to show how awesome we are through displaying our material wealth. And I like to brew beer, make cheese, and put food in jars.
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