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Saturday, 29 January 2011

Ordinary Bitter

Over the last year I've been working on my own house recipes that I can enjoy over and over. I've got a Best Bitter (Nobbut The Best), a Porter (Dark Dog Porter), an IPA (ConDem Nation IPA), a dark old ale (Farwelter'd Ale) but no session bitter.

That is until now! I wanted to go for something in the region of 3.8% that is bitter but still retains some body and malt presence. I wanted it to be a medium dark bitter and I also wanted to use some ingredients up.

This is what I came up with.
It's a similar grain bill to my Best Bitter but I've added some Pale Chocolate malt to add another dimension. I originally got the Pale Chocolate malt for the Black Sheep Riggwelter clone and am quite impressed with the flavour it brings to the party.

I'll reserve final judgement on the recipe once it's ready to drink but I'm hoping that I won't have to tweak it too much next time and I can add this to my regular beers.

This brew day I decided to really get to know the ingredients I'm using. To do this they need to be handled, tasted and smelt. Tasting the malts and smelling the aroma from the hops. It really helps to get an idea of what the ingredients add and when to (or not to) use them.

This will be pitched with a Wyeast 1028 London Ale yeast made up to a 1L starter for 24 hours. It will ferment at 20oC for 5-7 days. I'm planning on kegging half and bottling half so it might make it into a secondary fermentation vessel for a few days before bottling.

I'm looking forward to tasting it in 4-6 weeks time!

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