Doctor Duvel

I'm like a sommelier, but for beer.

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Location: Upstate New York, United States

Favorite Beers: Orval, Samuel Smith, Duvel, Hennepin, Oude Gueze, Chimay, Dogfish Head, Anchor Steam, and anything made by Trappist monks.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Another Saison Brew-Day

I've got to get Belgian beers out of my system... I've been making a lot of them lately. Sunday, I brewed another Saison, intended more or less for spring consumption. It features a lean, toasty Saison-de-Pipaix-style grain bill, moderately high hopping and spice additions (coriander, orange peel, grapefruit peel, and tiny amounts of star anise and ginger). I was planning to introduce a small amount of Roeslare sediment to give it some funk and acidity, but I might play it safe and split the batch--maybe bottle 1/2 or 2/3 of it in a month or so, and let the rest get funky for later bottling. We'll see. Meanwhile, I bottled my Autumn Saison, doing a case of 750 ml corked and capped bottles. That proved to be a little bit of a pain, as my corker is a piece of shit. Oh well. I won't do that all that often, but it needs some work. I also bottled my Wheat Doppelbock. Both those beers looked really good and I'm looking forward to early samples in a couple weeks.

I'm about to begin a dark-beer-oriented period of winter build-up. First, a Smuttynose Porter clone. Then the Barclay Perkins 1856 Imperial Brown Stout I've been talking about. Finally have everything ready to go. I also realized that it was criminal to make an 1100-plus beer with like 28 pounds of grain and not make a small beer too. So I'll do some sort of ungodly double brew day either next week, or the week after. I just ordered a different yeast strain, plus extra hops and a little crystal malt to flesh out the small beer. I'll call it "Little Bastard Small Stout" and hope I can somehow eke out 5 gallons and 1040-1048 by re-mashing with some extra dark grains. I figure it'll be about a twelve-hour project and will require borrowing an extra kettle and buckets. In other words, total chaos.


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