Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Marble Red Ale

One of the best beers I've ever brewed was my version of Jamil Zainasheff's Evil Twin (blog post here). There's something magical about so much malt and hop character coming together. I was toying with the idea of re-brewing it, but just for fun I decided instead to try my first recipe from the recent book "For the love of hops" by Stan Hieronymus.

The recipe is for "Marble Red Ale". I should mention that I have never tried a Marble brewery beer, nor heard of them outside of this book, but the recipe would seem to add up to a pretty awesome beer, so I had to try it out.

If you look through my older posts you will see that I have a few different possible brewing configurations, from pretty simple pot on a heat source BIAB  with no chilling, right up to recirculating automated step mashing, sparging and full chilling. Generally the higher the OG, the more complex my setup, so for this 1.065 monster I sparged and chilled. I also upped my volume a little to 24L to account for extra losses to hop material.

For yeast, I cultured up a large stirred starter of WYeast PACMAN, which I kept from a smack pack from late last year. Pacman is now my favourite yeast for American ales. I feel that it gives a really nice mouthfeel that I don't get from other american ale yeasts. Also it really is a beast and gets through high OG worts very quickly.

Here's the recipe:


   %     Amount     Name                          Origin        Potential SRM
 75.0     5.14 kg.  Pale Ale Malt (2-row)         Australia      1.037      2
 10.0     0.69 kg.  Vienna Malt                   Germany        1.036      4
 10.0     0.69 kg.  Crystal 77L                   UK             1.035     75
  5.0     0.34 kg.  Crystal 120L                  UK             1.033    120

Potential represented as SG per pound per gallon.


   Amount     Name                              Form    Alpha  IBU  Boil Time
 20.27 g.     Columbus                          Pellet  15.00  38.7  60 min.
 11.73 g.     Citra                             Pellet  11.50   3.4  10 min.
 11.73 g.     Simcoe                            Pellet  13.00   3.9  10 min.
 23.47 g.     Cascade                           Pellet   5.75   3.4  10 min.
 48.00 g.     Cascade                           Pellet   5.75   0.0  0 min.
 90.67 g.     Cascade                           Pellet   5.75   0.0  Dry Hop
 13.87 g.     Simcoe                            Pellet  13.00   0.0  Dry Hop
 13.87 g.     Citra                             Pellet  11.50   0.0  Dry Hop




  1. That should be one tasty beer. And pacman too!

    Hows that Brewers Gold bitter coming along?

  2. It's not a bad beer, though really it's ended up a bit too lager-like for my tastes. It's clean tasting and easy to drink, but not remarkable in any way. I might do a write up on it soon. Thanks Will, Sean

  3. Hi Sean.
    Just wondering how you managed the late hop additions using no-chill? Or have you a chiller now?
    A fellow-Cork brewer in the Antipodes.

    1. Hi KJH,

      I chill beers like this one. It's just too hard to calculate and manage the bitterness on no-chill with big late hop bills like this one. I have a big 30 plate chiller I got from Grain and Grape.

      No chill has huge benefits in terms of time, efficiency, water usage etc, but for me it is never the optimum solution where taste and hop character are concerned. Having said that, for moderate late hopping it's definitely possible to come very close to optimum with no-chill.