christmas ale

Grains, malts, hops, yeast, water and other ingredients used to brew. Recipe reviews and suggestions.

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christmas ale

Postby mr.smith » Mon Mar 30, 2009 7:11 pm

Hey all. This is my first post and I love the site. There's almost an overload of info. I wish I would have found this site a few years ago. I have a recipe for a christmas ale and since I'm still kind of new to brewing I thought it would be best to get more experienced opinions.

6.6 lb BierKeller German LME
3.3 amber DME
1/2 lb chocolate malt
1/2 lb crystal malt 80 Lovibond
1 lb clover honey
1 oz Tettnanger hops 5.0% alpha boil 60min
1 oz E. Kent Goldings 5.5% alpha boil 10min
1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 c turbinado sugar
6 oz grated ginger
4 tbsp orange peel
4 sticks cinnamon
2 1/2 tsp cardamom
1 1/2 tsp allspice
1 tsp whole cloves
windsor ale dry yeast
1/2 cup corn sugar


ok now for my questions
I'm not sure if I can find BierKeller German LME. I think I may have seen it at one time but who knows now. Is there a good replacement if it isn't for sale?

When useing honey do brewers still boil it or just add it right to the chilled wort? I ask this because from what I understand honey is clean already.

The recipe says to primary for 4 days, secondary for 10 days, then rack again for another 4 days. Is all this nessesery? Can i just primary the whole thing? What would you recommend.

Can this beer be ready by christmas? The recipe says to age 3 months, the author says he waited 6 months. Will a beer like this need more then that to age? I was thinking about starting to maybe this month to give it that extra time.

When ageing a beer for a long time I read somewhere that it's a good idea to use the crown caps that absorb oxygen.

Ok that's about it but I'm sure more will pop up. Sorry about this post being so long winded but I want to make sure I get it right. Most of these beers will be given away to the inlaws ;P I look forward to everyones reply.
mr.smith
 
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Postby Suthrncomfrt1884 » Mon Mar 30, 2009 7:37 pm

I'm not sure about the German malt, but here's my input on the rest...

As far as honey goes...most brewer's either add it to the last few minutes of the boil, or in the secondary fermentor. Either is fine.

This beer seems to have a lot of spices and flavors in it. If you plan on bottle conditioning it for 6 months, you probably don't need to mess with secondary fermentation. I would primary it for a few weeks at least, then bottle with the oxygen caps just to be safe.

I would condition this recipe for at least 3 months. Not to say you can't drink it before then, but I've found that bigger beers like this tend to taste their best after 3-6 months. If you brew it within the next month, you will have more than enough time.
Primary - Belgian Dubbel, Belgian IPA
Secondary - Cherry Lambic
Bottled - Bourbon Barrel Coffee Porter, Double Chocolate Raspberry Stout, Imperial Nut Brown, Apfelwein, American Amber Ale w/Homegrown Hops, Breakfast Stout
Kegged - Bass Clone, ESB
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Postby mr.smith » Tue Mar 31, 2009 9:25 pm

Thanks for the reply. Makes me feel a bit better about this recipe.
mr.smith
 
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