J: So… besides bottling, do we make some beer this weekend?
J: Red Sour (us-05 + lacto) com ginger and lavander?
P: I was thinking on something more classic: Saison Brett+sacc with lavander.
P: Fortunately, we have a third member to break the tie, or fuck the plans even more: D
N: Stout 75% yorkshire + 25% LALVIN RC212 (Bourgone) + cognac barrel + blueberries
N: What about this? 😁
P: Congratulations, you fucked this up even more. I knew you could do it.
J: Fucked up, but with class. So, Brett saison with lavender, simple and easy?
P: Fuck that. Now I want Stout with wine yeast.
Discuss one beer, get two more ideas for brewing … At the Brett Hotel, creativity and madness is always fermenting at high temperatures.
For today we have a Stout with Blueberries in “mixed fermentation” version… huuummmm… nhaamyy
The inspiration for this beer starts with the combination of stout beer with blueberries, inspired by other tastings in past days, in festivals of small towns in The Netherlands. Trying to escape the excesses of the “pastry” trend that makes beers artificial and difficult to drink a whole 33 cl. bottle nowadays. Here, on the contrary, we approach a more tropical path, with the inclusion of wine yeast and with the inclusion of fruit giving a new dimension to the beer, complemented also by the wood tannins and booziness of Armagnac.
The malt approach was classic, for the style: Maris Otter as a base malt combined with Munich for malty and biscuity flavors, complemented by a good amount of Crystal malt. Oats to smooth and round the body. For the roasted notes, the classic roasted barley essential in any stout and a Carafa Special, peeled, for less astringency of the roasted flavors and highlighting the chocolate notes.
All mashed at a generous 69ºC, the blueberries need a good dose of residual sweetness in the wort to stand out.
Two days before a 2.3L starter was made for the initial yeast, at 1.036 gravity, in order to obtain a pitch rate of 1M cells / mL / ° P.
Corrections to water minerals were made in order to obtain a pH in the mash of 5.45, favoring the production of beer with dark malts.
The mashing followed a simple saccharification regime for 50 minutes followed by 10 minutes of mash-out to make the wort more fluid.
The boil regime for this beer is quite simple, using a neutral bitterness hop, Warrior, in a single addition right at the beginning of the boil. We don’t want to have hop character in beer, it’s just to balance the sweetness of the wort.
At the end of the boil, after measuring the pH at 4.99 at room temperature, we decided to raise the pH of the beer. Typically, stouts with low pH are not satisfying and end up not having the correct mouthfeel. 5 gr of sodium bicarbonate were added to raise the final pH to 5.2.
On the brew day, we also prepared the wood to accompany the beer during the maturation phase. The idea was to simulate an Armagnac barrel. For this we chose to use medium toasted american oak wood chips, soaked in Armagnac for 2 weeks. 60 gr. of chips together with Armagnac, matured for 2 weeks to allow the wood to absorb the liquid. The alcoholic content of Armagnac also serves to kill any unwanted organisms that exist in the wood.
After boiling, the wort was cooled to 20ºC, transferred to the fermenter where the decanted yeast starter was added and the fermenter was placed in the fermentation chamber.
After 12 hours we already had a krausen formed and very active fermentation. The wort was fermented at 18ºC for 3 days. The remaining days of the fermentation were done at 21ºC.
The main yeast that was chosen for this beer has a story of its own. Coming from the mythical Timothy Taylor, a brewery that still ferments in the Yorkshire Squares, this yeast is an impressive top-cropper. Well treated, it starts vigorously and quickly forms a thick layer of krausen that persists for some time. No wonder that it’s used for open top fermentations. You can easily scoop this one out …
On the 4th day of fermentation, still with a krausen present, the blueberries were added. For this 18L volume of beer, we added 3 Kg. of frozen blueberries, which were thawed and processed into puree to extract more flavor. Adding the fruit at this stage, with the yeast still quite active, gives an extra security against a possible competition of other organisms from the fruit. The yeast as a dominant organism, will consume all the sugars quickly, leaving no “food” for other organisms to reproduce.
After two weeks of fermentation with the fruit, the wood chips were added together with Armagnac, inside a muslin bag. At this point, fermentation continued at room temperature.
The following week, 2 kg. of blueberries were added to improve the balance between the fruit flavors and the Armagnac. At this time, wine yeast was also added, hydrated in previously boiled water. With all the fructose still at disposal, this secondary fermentation started easily, having 3 more days of activity at 19ºC.
At the four weeks mark, the beer was transferred to a secondary fermenter leaving the fruit and wood behind. From here, bottling was carried out and a maturation period of at least 2 months was started, to “round” the various flavors of the beer.
As the Baltik Porter band says in their song “Brassagem” (mashing), “making beer is a journey” … See you on the next destination!
Blueberry Wine Stout aged in Armanagc Chips
Total Cereal: 8.07 Kg.
Original Gravity: 1.085
Boil Time: 60 minutes
60% – 4.84 kg. Maris Otter
20% – 1.61 kg. Munich II
8% – 0.65 kg. Flaked Oats
4% – 0.32 kg. Carafa Special II
3% – 0.24 kg. CaraAroma
3% – 0.24 kg. CaraMunich II
2% – 0.16 kg. Roasted Barley
22 gr. Warrior (leaf, ~17% AA) @ 60 min.
3 kg. blueberries- 30 days
60 gr. american oak wood chips soaked in Armanagc for 15 days
2 kg. blueberries- 10 dias
Wyeast 1469 West Yorkshire Ale
Lalvin Bourgovin RC212
Cl to SO4 Ratio: 0.2
Saccharification – 50 min @ 69ºC
Mash Out – 10 min @ 75ºC
pH@45 min email@example.comºC
1st round of blueberries at high krausen
Armagnac Wood Chips added
2nd round of blueberries
Wine yeast added
Priming for 2.0 volumes of Co2.
Final Gravity: 1.014
Final pH: 4.41
Alcohol: 9,5% ABV