Bobby Brown Holiday Brown Tasting

Appearance

Light brown, amber-like color with great clarity. Nice brown full pour with tan head that dissipates slowly.

Aroma

Gingerbread cookie, spice, biscuit, cinnamon, bread, sweet chocolate. 

Mouthfeel

Medium mouthfeel, has a nice round body. Medium carbonation. 

Taste

It first hits with clean chocolate, and washes with light bready notes. Finishes with spice and some sweetness, but doesn’t linger. Very crisp, clean, and balanced. Nothing sits too high.

Look at that color!

Notes

This is a really nice beer. A tasty brown ale with light chocolate notes that play well with the spice. It’s incredibly balanced, expressive, & drinkable. 

Check the recipe here.

Bobby Brown Holiday Brown

A little while back I brewed and American brown ale (Bobby Brown Ale) and it was really nice. It had chocolate and caramel flavors, but was really clean and drinkable. It’s the season for darker beers and I love a good American brown, so I wanted to revisit and revamp that beer. The BJCP describes a brown ale as “A malty but hoppy beer frequently with chocolate and caramel flavors. The hop flavor and aroma complements and enhances the malt rather than clashing with it.” That’s what I love about brown ales, the balance, the flavors, and the fact that they’re darker, but supremely drinkable.

For the base, I added Maris otter instead of just 2 row. I used Crystal 80 instead of 60, upped the chocolate malt a touch, and added maple syrup in the boil. I wanted to spice it up for the holidays, so i added two cinnamon sticks and some ground allspice, ginger, and nutmeg to the boil. I wanted a silkier mouthfeel so I added some maltodextrin to boost the body. Check the recipe:

Bobby Brown Holiday Brown

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
3 gal 60 min 24.62 IBUs 24.29 SRM 1.061 1.015 5.96 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Rahr 2 row malt 5 lbs 66.5
Maris Otter pale malt 1.5 lbs 20
American Chocolate malt 6 oz 5
Crystal 80L malt 4 oz 3.3
Maple Syrup 4.25 oz 3.5
Maltodextrin (3% fermentable) 2 oz 1.7

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Chinook 8 g 60 min Boil pellet 13.1

Other

Name Amount Time Use Form
Cinnamon stick 2 each 15 min Boil Spice
Dried ginger 1 tsp 15 min Boil Spice
Dried nutmeg .5 tsp 15 min Boil Spice
Dried allspice .5 tsp 15 min Boil Spice

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
Denny’s Favorite 50 Ale Slurry (1450) Wyeast 74-76% 60°F – 70°F

maltodextrin & maple syrup

Mash

Step Temperature Time
Mash 154°F 60 min

Fermentation

Step Time Temperature
Primary 14 days Ambient (~66)

Notes

Brewed: 11/21/18 | OG: 1.051 | FG: 1.008 | ABV: 5.64%

Water: Minneapolis tap water,  campden added.

65% efficiency | whirfloc/yeast nutrient @15

Tasting notes here.

Blue Saison w/ Dragonfruit Tasting

Appearance

Deep blue violet color with light purple head. great clarity, minimal haze.

Aroma

Earthy, woodsy, floral, spicy, mossy. Light saison character.

Taste

It hits with a mouthful of heavy woody, floral notes and washes with light saison character. It leaves an herbal, flowery aftertaste with a little sweetness I think I’m getting from the dragonfruit.

Mouthfeel

High carbonation, prickly. Light to medium viscosity, finishes dry.

Notes

This beer was a bit much. The butterfly pea flower flavor is pungent and overpowering, very little saison character, and muddled flavors. I can see how they can lend some good notes to beer, but I went really heavy and the beer was blue ish, so this was fun.

Check the recipe here.

The Mad Saison

If you’re here, then I’m sure you’ve heard of The Mad Fermentationist, Michael Tonsmeire. He literally wrote the book on sour beers (a very informative and great read) and his blog is full of recipes, tasting notes, and all kinds of goodness. I’m a frequent visitor and really enjoy his work, so when I got the chance to buy his yeast, I jumped on it.He had a house brett-saison culture that he created over the years and Bootleg Biology isolated selected microbes and put together a culture for brewers to use, The Mad Fermentationist Saison Blend. They describe the yeast as “Fine tuned over two years, this blend morphed over time to become an elegant powerhouse of classic saison spice, stone-fruit Brett, lactic tartness and a dry but well-rounded body. The final master blend consists of saison yeast, wild Saccharomyces, rare brettanomyces and an opportunistic lactobacillus culture.” Yes, I can dig that!

They suggest you dry hop during the tail end of fermentation, since it plays well with fruity and tropical hops. I wanted the yeast and bacteria to shine and was looking for some tartness. Michael says the lacto wasn’t very hop tolerant, so I was added some fruity hops at flameout and forewent the dry hop. Check the recipe:

The Mad Saison

Batch Size Boil Time IBU SRM Est. OG Est. FG ABV
3 gal 70 min low IBUs 3.66 SRM 1.054 1.005 6.43 %

Fermentables

Name Amount %
Belgian Pilsner malt 5 lbs 76.9
Red wheat malt 1 lbs 15.4
Rye malt .5 lb 7.7

Hops

Name Amount Time Use Form Alpha %
Rakau 10 g 0 min flameout Pellet 10

Yeast

Name Lab Attenuation Temperature
The Mad Fermentationist Saison Blend Bootleg Biology high 60°F – 80+°F

Mash

Step Temperature Time
Mash 150°F 60 min

Fermentation

Step Time Temperature
Primary 51 days ~80°F

Notes

Brewed: 9/7/18 | OG: 1.050 | FG:1.002 | ABV: 6.3%

Water: Minneapolis tap water, camdpen added.

70% efficiency | Mash ph adjusted to ~5.6 | whirfloc/yeast nutrient @15

21 days @ 80°F  with heating pad, 30 days ambient.

Tasting notes to follow.

Honey Chamomile Wheat Tasting

Appearance

White head with small bubbles that dissipate slowly. Light golden pale color. Light haze in early bottles, later bottles crystal clear.

Aroma

Chamomile, light earthiness, light sweetness, wheat, light floral notes

Taste

It has a nice clean-ness up front. The honey hits first for a second, then the chamomile washes with a little bitterness and flowery tea like flavor in the back end. It pairs really well with the wheat and honey. Not sweet at all, not perfumy or too flowery.  The wheat lingers.

Mouthfeel

This beer is almost effervescent, nice high carb. It has a light/medium body, not watery at all, but quite drinkable.

Notes

I really enjoy his beer. It’s an awesome summer beer that drinks clean and has interesting flavors that mesh well together. I rarely brew beers twice, but this will be back next summer.

Picked up a 2nd place medal at this years Byggvir’s Big Beer Cup in the Spiced beer category! Wooo

Check the recipe here.