I know what you’re thinking; Nathan is writing the post two weeks in a row? Is Katryn sick? Doing Nathan’s Laundry? Locked in the closet? No, no, I can assure you that she is fine. She has just allowed me to geek out again and post our most recent home brewing adventure.
Our newest brew represents both an improvement in the recipe that I am trying to perfect and the newest iteration of my pennant label design. The last label portrayed a European medieval knight, but for this go around I headed to Japan and drew up a samurai warrior proudly displaying the Rampant lion. What does Japan or a samurai have to do with the beer? Nothing, but what isn’t made cooler by a samurai, swords, and some japanese characters? Google Translate assures me that the characters on the samurai translate to ‘rampant’ and that the characters next to him mean ‘pennant’ or ‘flag’. Although it is entirely possible that I have made the same mistake that the frat boy from college that you knew did. You know, that tattoo of an asian character that he got that was supposed to mean ‘warrior’ but actually translated to ‘pretty pansy.’ Next label I think I may test fate yet again with translating some greek with a Spartan hoplite or latin with a Roman centurion.
Our last Pennant Ale was a bit of an overload of malts and sugars which threw the beer over the top in alcohol and sweetness. This time around, we reigned ourselves in and moderated the fermentable sugars some and ended up with a product that we are much more happy with! The beer’s light feel while drinking it belies the almost 9% alcohol content. Like most belgian beers, the yeast has given the beer fruity aromatic flavors with some light esther aromas. We used 1.5 oz of hops which I think made the beer slightly more hoppy than I would prefer but overall this recipe was a vast improvement on the last and we are getting closer to nailing it down.
I have never posted any of our previous home brew recipes but I have decided to start doing so for those folks who may be curious or want to use it. These are truncated instructions for those folks with the equipment and experience that do not require exhaustive instructions. At some point in the future we may do a more instructive post about the brewing process. If you have any questions regarding this recipe please let me know!
Pennant Ale 2.0:
For 5 gallon batch
1/2 Pound Aromatic Malt
1/2 Pound Biscuit Malt
4 Pounds Extra Light Dry Malt Extract
4 Pounds Extra Light Dry Malt Extract (late addition to boil, 15 minutes)
1 Ounce Styrian Goldings Hops (bittering)
.5 Ounce Styrian Goldings Hops (late addition to boil, 5 minutes)
1 Pound Liquid Light Beet Sugar (late addition to boil, 15 minutes)
1 Package Belgian Golden Ale Yeast (White Labs #WLP570)
1 Teaspoon Sweet Orange Peel (late addition to boil, 5 minutes)
1 Teaspoon Coriander Seed (late addition to boil, 5 minutes)
2.5 gallon boil, 60 minutes
Steep grains at 165 Degrees for 20 minutes, remove and bring to boil.
Add 4 pounds extra light DME and 1 ounce styrian goldings hops.
With 15 minutes remaining to boil, add remaining 4 pounds extra light DME and 1 pound sugar
With 5 minutes remaining to boil, add remaining .5 ounce styrian goldings hops, coriander, and sweet orange peel
Cool wort and transfer to primary, top off with water to 5 gallons, and pitch yeast
Original Gravity: 1.080
Final Gravity: 1.014
Alcohol By Volume: 8.7%