What to Wear ? (Part 2)

I mentioned in an earlier post that I was invited to participate in a craft beer tasting promoted by the local community foundation. That post detailed the Russian Imperial Stout that I made as the first beer for the tasting. The second beer selected for the show is a Saison, a style that has become very popular in the last five years. I love my Saison with rye malt, so I sent back to the well and used my basic Saison recipe:

Grains Amount Percent
Pilsener Malt (Weyermann) 2.75 kg 47%
Vienne Malt 1.10 kg 19%
Flaked Wheat 1.10 kg 19%
Malted Rye 0.60 kg 10%
Lyle’s Golden Syrup 0.24 kg 4%
Hops Amount Boil Time IBUs
East Kent Goldings 30 g 60 min 18
East Kent Goldings 22 g 15 min 7
East Kent Goldings 22 g 5 min 3
Coriander 30 g 0 min 0
Original Gravity 15.6º P (1.064)
Final Gravity 2.3º P (1.009)
Apparent Attenuation 86%
Estimated ABV 7.0%

I mashed in at 67 °C and let it go for an hour.  I added both gypsum and calcium chloride to the mash, partially to help the pH but also to add some minerals to the relatively low mineral western Pennsylvania water.  I even added a bit of sodium chloride. The final water profile was 89 ppm calcium, 64 ppm sodium, 137 ppm chloride and 148 ppm sulfate.  I almost always mash with 3 liters of water per kilogram of grain, which works out to somewhere around 1.5 quarts per pound (for those still using middle age measuring systems).  My mash efficiency was 78%, which is probably due to using a sugar as an adjunct, freeing up water for sparging.  Since I was using a pilsener malt I boiled for 90 minutes.

Wyeast 3711 French Saison is the yeast I prefer for Saisons.  I had to restart a small sample I had retained fr0m earlier in the year.  I worked up the volume by making an 8 liter starter (which I actually hopped and drank, hey, I may be a coward but I am a thirsty little coward).  The fermentation temperature started at 16 °C before allowing it to slowly rise to 25 °C over a week.  I was a little disappointed in the attenuation.  Wyeast 3711 normally gets 90 or 95 percent, this was 86 percent.  A sample tasted during kegging seemed OK, but unless this thing becomes infected it is what I will serve at the tasting.

So I now had two beers ready for the tasting, but it never hurts to have a backup plan and brew a third.  I will cover that one next.

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