Tuesday, July 2, 2013

100% Brett Trois IPA

I have always wanted to brew an all Brett fermented beer, but just never had gotten around to it. I guess one reason was I have always associated these beers with a fairly long turn around time. So I always seemed to put it off in favor of something else.

That recently changed. I was checking out a post from a fellow home brewer, Meta Brewing, on an all Brett fermented IPA. After reading the post and reading everything else I could find on the concept, I dove right in by moving this to the top of the brew schedule.

The beer itself is really two experiments in one for me. It is my first attempt at all-brett fermentation. And second it is my first beer to forgo any hops in the boil. Don't get me wrong, there are a ton of hops in this brew, but all come at flame out and later.

Thanks to Luke (Meta Brewing) for the inspiration and tips. I used his grain bill, and ideas around hop schedule to come up with the following.

TROIS IPA (((¿0 IBU?)))
American IPA
Type: All GrainDate: 6/19/2013
Batch Size (fermenter): 11.50 galBrewer: Michael & Tim
Boil Size: 13.25 galAsst Brewer:
Boil Time: 90 minEquipment: Stainless Pots (26 gallons) -BCS 460
End of Boil Volume 11.00 galBrewhouse Efficiency: 70.00 %
Final Bottling Volume: 10.00 galEst Mash Efficiency 76.1 %
Fermentation: Ale, Two StageTaste Rating(out of 50): 
Taste Notes:
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
23 lbs 2.9 ozPale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM)Grain180.0 %
2 lbs 14.4 ozMunich 10L (Briess) (10.0 SRM)Grain210.0 %
1 lbs 7.2 ozCara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM)Grain35.0 %
1 lbs 7.2 ozPale Wheat Malt (German) (2.3 SRM)Grain45.0 %
2.00 ozMosaic [12.20 %] - Flameout (Steep15.0 min)Hop50.0 IBUs
7.00 ozMosaic [12.20 %] - Aroma Steep 15 min (add 15 mins after flame out) Hop60.0 IBUs
2000ml starterBRETTANOMYCES BRUXELLENSIS TROIS (White Labs #WLP644)Yeast7-
7.00 ozMosaic [12.20 %] - Dry Hop 14.0 DaysHop80.0 IBUs
5.50 ozNelson Sauvin [12.00 %] - Dry Hop 7.0 DaysHop90.0 IBUs


6/23  - Brew day went pretty smooth. OG was a little higher than expected, since we only got 11 gallons into the fermenter. We were expecting 1.064 and hit 1.068

Pitched the Trois from a 2000 ml starter that had been going 4 and a half days. I basically went about doing the same process I do for an ale starter except I did it for several more days than normal. It did not take long for the fermentation to take off.

6/28 - Gravity at 1.020 interesting flavor

7/2 - Things have really slowed down. Gravity is only down to 1.019. I would expect something lower than this. I guess I need some patience. Sample tasted amazing. No noticeable sweetness and just an in your face blast of mango and pineapple flavors. Can't wait to get the dry hops in!

7/4 - Added 7 oz of Mosaic hops to the fermenter. The smell that came out of the fermenter when I opened it was absolute tropical fruit heaven! Just floored me how fruity the smell was.

7/11 - Added 5.5 oz of Nelson

7/18 - Transfered to kegs. FG is 1.015

7/22 - Tasted a little yesterday. Still under carbed at this point. No bitterness at all. Tastes very fruity. I will do a full review in a week or so.

8/4 - I entered this beer into the Specialty Ale category (23) in Utah's 5th Annual Beehive Brew off. It took first place with a score of 41 in a field of 24 entrants.  In the special ingredients field I specified 100% Brett fermentation with Brux Trois. No boil additions and all hops at flameout or later. I also mentioned no fruit was in the beer. Even though I had an IPA in mind when I brewed this I did not call out a base beer. I felt it would probably be harmed in the judging if I did.

Judges were split on the hop schedule. One judge thought it needed more hops in the background to balance the beer. The other said it was spot on and an earlier hop addition would harm the beer.

After drinking this beer I tend to side with the argument for some boil addition hops. If for no other reason because I know what it tastes like without them. It would also push this beer into an amazing Brett beer that I could truly call an IPA.

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