Monday, 21 December 2015

FastFerment Review...

With my increase in brew volumes I had been looking to pick up a couple of extra FVs to spread the load. As always with this brewing game you want the latest kit and I had my eyes on the FastFerment conical vessels, but at £85 it was a bit steep considering I could get a perfectly good tried-and-tested Speidel vessel for half the price. About the time I was shopping around I received an email from the head honcho at, Greg Hughes (also author of the excellent Home Brew Beer), asking if I would be interest in taking a FastFerment for a trial run. The timing was so perfect that I actually queried if he had been checking my browsing history! Obviously I took him up on his offer!

A few weeks later a hefty package arrived.

Unpacking it you soon realise it’s serious kit. There’s lots of parts and even an instruction manual. It’s worth spending some time just checking it over before assembly as I found a few plastic strands on the threads as a result of the manufacturing process that needed removing. The manual actually suggested you to screw everything on and off a few times just to smooth out the threads. A roll PTFE is also included so make sure you tape all the threads and then perform a wet run, the last thing you want is for it to be beer to leak out when you fill it for the first time. It did take me a couple of attempts to plug a leak coming from the thermowell thread. On first impressions the build quality is not quite up to the standard of the Speidel FVs I’ve been using recently, but it's easily overlooked with features such as the handy volume markings and the aforementioned thermowell.

So what benefits do you get from a conical fermenter? Firstly as the trub settles in the cone, you’re left a smaller surface area in contact with the beer, as opposed to a flat bottomed FV, thus lowering the risk of that dead matter imparting any flavour. Not that I think this has ever been a problem on small scale brewing, but I guess every positive tweak to your methods helps create a cleaner beer. Secondly, and this is probably the top reason for going conical, situated at the bottom of the cone is a valve which allows you remove the trub/yeast matter, leaving your beer in situ, so that it can condition without having to rack to another vessel. The FastFerment makes this process even easier by supplying a secondary collection vessel that you can attach the bottom, allowing you to draw out the yeast, keeping the system sealed and thus lowering any chance of infection. Plus you can then save the yeast for future brews, saving you a bit of cash in the long run.

As you can see from the photos the manufacturer has opted for a teardrop shaped vessel, which obviously is not going to stand upright on it’s own. They’ve got around this by supplying wall brackets that the vessel sits on, which is a great idea if you have ve got available wall space, but I didn’t! Thankfully you can buy a separate floor stand, which is a bit pricey at just over £30. On the stand with the airlock attached, it’s nearly a metre off the floor, which means I’ve got no chance of squeezing this in my fermentation fridge. With winter drawing in it’s going to get pretty cold in the brewshed, so I needed to think of someway of getting some heat into this thing.

Once the brewday had rolled around I planned to do a split batch, half in the FastFerment and half in my trusty Speidel, which is fully temperature controlled. For the FastFerment I would have to monitor this aspect manually. After a bit of head scratching about how I was actually going to achieve this, given the odd shape of the vessel, I hit on an idea. I still had an old brew belt knocking around from my early days of homebrewing, which sat nicely around the vessel just above the top of the stand. I also had a spare heating which I positioned directly underneath. To insulate it I sat it on a square of silver bubble wrap type insulation and wrapped another sheet around it, which came half way around the vessel. It was a total bodge job, but it worked a treat! With heat being applied underneath and the top of the vessel open to the cold temperatures I actually succeeded in keeping it a steady temperature around 20 degree mark! I’ve since seen that the FastFerment guys have released an insulated jacket, but like all the official peripherals - it’s pretty pricy.

So far so good.

After a few days of fermentation I could visibly seen the trub building up. I decided now would be a good time to draw off some of that yeast. I opened the valve and at first nothing happened, the trub was quite thick so it took a few seconds for it to work it’s way down. Once it started dripping into the collection vessel, the beer above could flow through and drag the rest of the matter with it. I managed to collect a decent amount before it was just the beer coming through. A few days later another trub layer had settled, and needing to draw off a sample I decided to stick the hose barb on and just drain and dump the trub to get to the fresh beer above. This was easier said than done! Due to the gloopy nature of the trub clinging to the sides of the vessel it was nigh on impossible to get a clean sample. In the end my figures show I lost 4.5 litres worth of good beer over the course of the fermentation process. The need for a secondary valve sat above the trub cake was obvious, something that can be easily remedied with a drill and decent valve, but when you’re paying a lot of money for an FV this seems a bit of slap in the face.

This leads me on to my second issue. If you’re using the collection vessel to drain the trub you have liquid and matter swapping places with air, so the pressure inside the vessel stays the same. If you use the hose barb fitting you need to allow some air to get in the top or else you’ll be sucking in the liquid from the airlock, which is what happened to me! Thankfully it was just a bit of Star-san so no harm done. The next time I did it I decided to take out the floating section of the airlock, however that’s easier said than done. It’s so small and sits so far down the main airlock that you can’t actually get to it without child sized hands, instead I fashioned a makeshift hook to get in there to lift it out! Again, something easily remedied with a better airlock.

When it came to bottling the FastFerment worked a treat. With the trub removed what was left in the vessel was going straight into bottles, but I couldn't help but think of the amount of beer I lost to get to that point. In comparison, I lost just 1 litre of beer in my Speidel FV to trub sludge. So any other complaints? Whilst the addition of a thermowell is welcomed, the positioning of it isn't great, in the cone section pointing downwards, so if you’re using the stand you need to get on your hands and knees to view the dial, which is another additional cost (it’s not great quality either).

So would I continue to use it? I’d have to say no. I found it just far too awkward and fiddly to use and the pros were soon crushed under the weight of the cons. For the hefty price tag I would have expected something that was a considerable step up in quality to a standard barrel type fermentor. The price of the vessel and all the other bits comes to just over the £130 mark, for just a little bit more you could pick up an equivalently sized stainless steel vessel from SS BrewTech which looks a much more tidy solution. If you’ve got the wall space and can make use of the supplied brackets it’s a more ideal solution as the cost is then midrange, sitting between your standard plastic buckets and the premium vessels as mentioned above.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

What's Going On?

It's been a while since I last posted on here, heck I've only just noticed I haven't even written up my last brew, but there's been a very good reason for that! I've been busy setting up as a microbrewery, so obviously my time and attention has been diverted elsewhere. The brewery is simply named - Macclesfield Brewing Company (or Macc Brew Co. for short). I toyed around with various names for a while, but in the end decided to keep it geographical. Macclesfield is becoming a boomtown for beer, we have lots of bars, pubs and bottle shops selling hundreds upon hundreds of quality...dare I say it? Craft...beers. It made sense to get a foothold in this growing scene.

Macc Brew Co. certainly is not going to set the world on fire, not to begin with anyway! I'll be sticking with the same 100 litre kit I've been using for home brewing and producing limited bottle runs of beers I would find interesting if I had spotted them on the shelf of my local bottle shop. There won't be a core range, instead opting to brew beers based on what ingredients are available around the time of brewing, though no doubt I will probably end up re-brewing anything that has proved popular, I mean it is a business after all!

I've not 100% decided on what the first beers will be, but I want to hit the market with something interesting, so I'll probably go with tried and tested beers that have been highly acclaimed by other folk in the past. Obvious contenders would be DANG, my Lime Pickle IPA and just in time for Christmas, the Black Forest Stout (although there may be a twist). So far I've had some encouraging interest from bottle shops in the area, so much so that I reckon I'll only just be meeting demand straight out of the traps, which will look great on the books for when I want to upgrade the brewery!

I shall be doing my first commercial brew this weekend, so with any luck we will have beers on the shelves in a couple of weeks’ time. If you want to keep up with what's happening with the brewery you can find us on Twitter under @maccbrewco.

Saturday, 29 August 2015

AG #4 - autosuggestion Black IPA

Despite being a lover of IPAs of the black variety, I have for some reason never got around to brewing one - this needed to remedied! Having just put down Mikkeller’s Book of Beer, I was feeling suitably enthused. In the book was a recipe for Firestone Walker’s Wookey Jack, a rye heavy black IPA that sounded absolutely delicious! Luck would have it that someone had just imported a stack of Firestone’s beer, one of which was this very brew. I made it my mission to get my mitts on a bottle, which the kind folk at Beermoth supplied with me. It was blummin’ marvelous! So I immediately pencilled in a BIPA brew into my schedule.

Needing a name, and with nothing jumping off the top of my head, I required something that could make some kind of auto suggestion. Bingo! ‘Autosuggestion’ is the name of a Joy Division song, which much like every song they ever did, is a pretty dark affair and you can’t get much darker than a Black IPA. It was a marriage made in hell! Plus, with living in Macclesfield, and just down the road from where Ian Curtis lived and died, it seemed a logical tribute. It didn’t really happen like that, I just thought the name was great and had always wanted to match it up with a dark beer.

Before concocting a recipe, I had another read of Port66’s Black IPA Brewing Tips, which was written by James Kemp, brewer of many-a-decent BIPA. This is a must read! With the knowledge committed to memory I set about building the beer. Some of my favourite BIPAs border on a hoppy porter (see Great Heck’s Black Jesus). I wanted to replicate this, so I went slightly heavier on the chocolate malt, only a few percent mind, but enough to be noticeable. For the hops I went for the mainstay of hoppy beers, Citra and Amarillo. I do have some Topaz pellets in the store that needed to be used so I was toying with the idea of using them to dry hop.

To tighten up my brewing process, this time I came prepared! All the hop additions were clearly labelled up and stacked in order, so no accidental hop additions this time. Having only just started to use Beersmith in anger, I realised you could print out a useful brew schedule which was good to have to hand when weighing and working out timings. For this brew day I also had a brewery assistant, Sam, on hand to help out. This meant that I didn’t need to divide my time so much between different tasks, I could just leave him with the sheet and he knew the score.

I planned for a ‘low and long’ mash schedule, at 64 degrees and held for 90 minutes. Once again going with a gut instinct strike temp calculation, I was around .5 of a degree out, which was easy to remedy. Knowing that my kit usually drops a couple of degrees during the mash, I planned to bring my old Brupak boiler out of retirement to do a bit of recirculating, without recirculating, so in reality a single stage decoction. After around 60 minutes it dropped a degree, so I drew off 4-5 litres and set the Brupak to around 80 degrees. Once it tripped off I transferred the hot wort back into the mash, which worked an absolute treat, bringing the temp back up to where I wanted it for remainder of the mash.

Nothing particularly exciting occurred during the boil...

When it came to cooling, again I got to use the Behemoth chiller, which managed to get down to 21 degrees within around 30 minutes. It was only when I transferred into the FV the temp controller reported the temperature as being 16 degrees! Fearing that the controller was buggered, I drew off a sample and dunked a good old liquid thermometer in, sure enough it was 16 degrees, so it was actually my digital thermometer that was out. So, this new chiller of mine had actually managed to get down to 16 degrees in 30 minutes, which I think you’ll agree, is pretty impressive!

After pitching I decided to leave the temperature to rise naturally in the hope of squeezing out some fruity esters, with peaking at 22 degrees for a couple of days. Once it started to drop, I switched on the temperature controller to keep it at a steady 20 degrees. After a week it had dropped from 1.048 to 1.012, making it around the 4.7% mark, which I was happy with. Time to dry hop the hell out of it. I stuck with my original additions of Citra and Amarillo and decided I would crack open the Topaz pellets after all, for some added fruitiness. The combo seems to have worked well, with the fruity Topaz fleshing out the other hop additions.

My target was to mirror the liquorice blackcurrant vibe that Buxton’s Black Rocks has (one of James Kemp’s own creations), thankfully this is what I got! It’s easy drinking with some resinous bitterness.

Update: After a couple of weeks this was really in a sweet spot, but just a week later the hops had faded fast and what I was left with is a roasty porter with some slight fruity notes. It was certainly still drinkable, but not quite what I was looking for. Since then I’ve sent a water sample off to Murphy & Son for analysis (via BrewUK) to see what improvements could be made to my water to improve hop utilisation. The results show that for hop forward beers I was way out with my minerals, but not too bad for darker malty beers, which I’ve always had great success with. So with a store cupboard now full of water treatment I shall schedule in a hoppy brew and expect to see a difference. Stay tuned!

Grain Bill...
5.5 kg Maris Otter (88%)
300 g Munich (4.8%)
250 g Chocolate (4%)
200 g Carafa III (3.2%)

Hop Bill...
30 g Topaz Leaf (16.3% Alpha) (First wort)
30 g Citra Leaf (12% Alpha) 10 mins (Boil)
45 g Amarillo Leaf (9.2% Alpha) (Steep/Whirlpool)
45 g Citra Leaf (12% Alpha) (Steep/Whirlpool)
55 g Amarillo Leaf (9.2% Alpha) 3 days (Dry hop)
25 g Citra Leaf (12% Alpha) 3 days (Dry hop)
10 g Topaz Pellet (16.2% Alpha) 3 days (Dry hop)

Single step infusion at 64°C for 90 Minutes
Fermented for 2 days at 22°C (left to rise naturally) with White Labs Pacific Ale yeast (WPL041), then dropping to 20°C for 5 days.

OG: 1.048
FG: 1.012
ABV: 4.7%

Friday, 14 August 2015

Macc Homebrew Change Venues...

I was just sat here trying to recall how long the Macclesfield Homebrew Club has been going and came to the startling realisation that we're coming up to our 2nd anniversary! It just seems like yesterday that we were all sat around the massive round tables in Red Willow all getting to know each other! However, next time we meet it won't be in Red Willow. Macclesfield's No.1 bottle shop has recently moved to bigger premises, allowing them to squeeze in a few tables and a bar, plus they're not normally open Tuesdays so we would have free reign of the place - it made sense. The main reason for the move was simple, just to have a bit of peace and quiet! We've been struggling for a while to talk to each other sat around those big tables, when there's music playing and punters enjoying themselves (how dare they!).

Other than the venue, nothing else has changed! So if you fancy meeting up with some fellow homebrewers, pop down! Everyone is welcome! We meet the last Tuesday of every month, at 7:30PM, and just to reiterate the new meeting place is Brewtique, now located in the market square (a few doors down from Pizza Express).

Sunday, 21 June 2015

Need More Input Part 4...

Experimental Homebrewing - Drew Beechum and Denny Conn
Ever since reading Randy Mosher’s superbly influential Radical Brewing I had been desperately seeking another book to fill the void it had left behind. I thought his next book, Mastering Homebrew, might have been the right fit, but it looked to be more of a catch-all homebrewers guide than a follow-up. Thankfully, I caught wind of Experimental Brewing from listening to a Beersmith podcast in which both authors featured - it sounded absolutely ideal! Forgoing the usual beginner-to-novice route most homebrew books take, this book delves into, as the title would suggest, the more experimental side of brewing, or ‘ways you can deviate from the norm’ as they put it. This is really a book aimed at people who can already brew, but are interested in ideas and techniques that may improve their skills. Obviously with the authors being American it’s all ounces this, gallons that, so you’ll need a conversion calculator to hand if you want to tackle any of the recipes. It’s written in a light hearted, easy-to-read manner, much like Radical Brewing.

Brew Britannia - Boak and Bailey
I’ve veered off my normal brewing reading track with this one, but the book's subject matter was too interesting to bypass, especially considering the authors. Written by the folk behind the popular and entertaining beer blog, Boak and Bailey, this book chronicles the rise and fall and rise again of the British beer industry. Unfortunately, and I know I’ll be in a minority here, I found the flow of the book a bit awkward, making it a real chore to digest at times. You’re bombarded with so many figures, dates and people that if you’re not concentrating you just end up losing the plot, and their overuse of apostrophes became ‘nearly’ as annoying that someone ‘doing’ actual ‘air’ quotations in ‘your’ face. It’s not all bad though, the latter chapters I found quite compelling, about the origins of today's superstar breweries, such as Thornbridge, Magic Rock and Brewdog.

Mikkeller’s Book of Beer - Mikkel Borg Bjergsø and Pernille Pang
I was totally unaware of this book’s existence until someone randomly tweeted about it. 30 seconds later I had slapped down some readies for pre-order. Currently ranked in the top three breweries in the world according to Ratebeer, a book about Mikkeller was always going to be an insta-buy. Unfortunately, it feels a bit light on content, seemingly packed with more images than words. There are some glistening gems of information in there such as the recipes for some of Mikkeller's famed brews, plus a bit of backstory of the once gypsy brewery. Make no mistake, it was a seriously decent read, I just wished there was more of it! Given their sibling rivalry, I wonder how long it’ll take until we see an Evil Twin book?

IPA - Mitch Steele
For the life of me I don’t know why I haven’t picked up this book earlier, I’m absolutely kicking myself! The labour of love that has gone into this book is apparent from the off. Mitch has travelled the globe, talking to anyone and everyone, reading through numerous archives, to glean as much info as possible on the title subject matter. The result is the most comprehensive book you’ll find on the history of India Pale Ales. Mitch is a true star in the brewing world and the work he does at Stone highlights he is a brewer to sit up and take note of, especially when it comes to the subject of IPAs. As always you’ll find a slew of recipes from renowned American breweries in the back, along with some more historical recipes reworked for modern brewing methods. A definite must-read.

Oxford Companion of Beer - Edited by Garrett Oliver
Edited by Garrett Oliver, brewmaster at Brooklyn Brewery, this encyclopedic tome covers almost everything you would want to know about beer and brewing. It’s not something you would typically read, but thumb through at random or pick up when required. Having not cross-checked each section, it’s difficult to rate it’s accuracy, but for the most part it seems pretty well researched. However, there are some reviews on Amazon that point out numerous inaccuracies which I’d imagine would be corrected in subsequent editions. It is certainly a great addition to my growing brew library and one I can imagine will come in useful at some point.

AG #3 - Lemon & Cardamom Hopfenweisse...

Unless you've been living under a rock for the past year you will probably be aware of new Manchester super brewery, Cloudwater. They've hit the ground running with some truly brilliant beers, but one in particular really stood out on the debut lineup for me, the Bergamot Hopfenweisse, a really fresh wheat beer with a healthy addition of Bergamot fruit. At a recent ‘Meet the Brewer’ event, Cloudwater’s co-founder and head brewer, James Campbell, revealed that the original plan was to use tangerines, but unable to source any in time for brewday, they decided to go with a seasonal citrus fruit, Bergamot. I was so taken with this beer I decided I would pencil a Hopfenweisse into my next available brewday.

Not being content with just throwing hops in to my brews, I thought I’d would follow suit and I too would include a fruit addition. I had mentally shelved an idea of adding lemon and cardamon to a future brew, it works so well in cakes, why not a beer? That day had just arrived! To accentuate the lemon I went with my old faithful hop, Sorachi Ace, with a simple 10 minute addition that worked so well with previous beers. To keep things even more simple, I went for a grist consisting of a straight 50-50 split of Wheat and Vienna, 3 kilograms each. So far it looked like this was going to be an easy brewday. To throw in with the hop addition I had the rind of three lemons, along with three whole cardamom pods.

When the brewday arrived I endeavoured not to fall for the same mistakes as my first two brews on this new kit (one day I shall stop referring to it as ‘new’). Last brewday I had learned that without some major tweaking, the strike temp calculators I was using weren't going to help me, so I had to rely on my gut instinct. I added two litres of boiling water to the mash tun to warm up the pot whilst I was getting the HTL up to temperature. Knowing how much my mash was out with the previous attempts, I took a punt and bumped the strike temp up to 80°C. I was aiming for a 66°C mash and that’s exactly what I got! Hurrah! Something went right!

Everything else went according to plan.

When it came to cooling, this was the first opportunity I’d had to test drive my new copper coil. Even though it has a large footprint, the coil still protruded out of the wort, which was expected as it was built for 50-60 litre batches. Even still, it managed to get 29 litres of wort down to pitchable temperatures within around 30 minutes which I was pleased with and it gave a good indication that it’ll handle a 60 litre batch with ease.

I pitched the yeast in at 20°C and set the controller to keep it there for a couple of days, then whacked it up to 23 for a few more days. Taste-wise, there was some definite lemon tones coming through with the Sorachi backing it up with bitterness, but the cardamom was severely lacking. Thankfully I had planned to ‘dry hop’ with yet more lemon rind and cardamom a few days before bottling, this certainly did the trick! I had worried that the lemon might come through a bit too sharp, like neat lemon juice (or a radler), but thankfully it comes through more akin to a lemon cake, which is kind of what I was looking for. As for the cardamom, it is definitely shining through now, but playing nicely in the same space as the citrus, giving it some extra dimension.

I was in two minds whether to enter this into the Brewdog Homebrew Competition as it was due to be bottled on the morning I was planning to submit my entries, meaning it would be carbing whilst in their possession. Risky I know, but I had nothing to lose, so I entered it and hoped for the best. Thankfully my punt paid off as it actually ended up winning the ‘Best Bitters’ category, which was basically for any beer between 3.4-5.4%! Result!

Grain Bill...
3 kg Vienna (50%)
3 kg Wheat (50%)

Hop Bill...
100 g Sorachi Ace Leaf (14.5% Alpha) 10 Minutes (Boil)

Misc Bill...
Rind of 3 lemons @ 10 Minutes (Boil)
3 Cardamom pods @ 10 Minutes (Boil)
Rind of 3 lemons @ 2 days (Dry hop)
4 Cardamom pods @ 2 days (Dry hop)

Single step infusion at 66°C for 90 Minutes
Fermented for 2 days at 20°C with White Labs Hefeweizen Ale Yeast (WPL300), then raised to 23°C for 3 days.

OG: 1.050
FG: 1.012
ABV: 5%

Monday, 8 June 2015

AG #2 - Melon Farmer Saison...

This brew came about in a random fashion; the name came first followed by the beer design. You see, my favorite film of all time is Alex Cox’s Repo Man and if any of were around in the days when we had only four television channels, you’ll recall that the BBC used to dub out any profanity from the films it broadcasted. As not to undermine the artistic integrity of the film, the Beeb would give the filmmakers the opportunity to dub it themselves. It was whilst editing Repo Man, Cox found that ‘Melon Farmer’ was a lip-sync fit for ‘Mutha Fucker’. Today, it’s the perfect name for a melon-ladened saison.

With what I thought was the arrival of summer (we had one warm week then it all went to pot) my mind turned once again to brewing a saison. I had brewed a cracking Sorachi saison the previous year and I was looking to brew something similarly tasty. Having only one brew fridge, the plan was always to have one FV temperature controlled and another left to nature’s ambient temperatures, which was obviously perfect for a saison.

With a name already in mind, the recipe was pretty much written; I’d stick with a Vienna malt base (as I always do), but ditch the Danstar Belle Saison yeast in favour of Whitelab’s WPL566 Belgian Saison II. Obviously there was going to be plenty of actual melon involved, but with a stroke of luck there is also a relatively new German hop called Hull Melon that has a “distinctive honeydew melon and strawberry aroma”. It was meant to be! It’s a mellow hop so I planned to bulk it out a with some Topaz. This I had absolutely shitloads of lying around after a bulk club purchase.

After what I thought was a disastrous first brew on the new kit (the resultant beer actually turned out very good!), I was hoping for a more trouble free brewday. Learning from my  previous mistake calculating strike temps, whilst I was waiting for the liquor to get up to temp, I emptied 9 litres of boiling water into the mash tun, just enough to cover the false bottom. I figured this would apply enough heat into the stainless steel vessel to help prevent it sapping so much heat out of my strike water. Feeling confident I went with my usual calculations, but unfortunately I was still quite a way out and ended up having to throw in more hot water to bring the temperature up to a respectable number. Grrr! Still, it’s only my second brew so I shouldn't expect it to be perfect just yet.

Assuming I was over the worse, I foolishly threw in the wrong first wort hops! Instead of throwing in a handful Topaz, instead I added a batch of my prized Hull Melon that had been already been measured for a late hop addition. Thankfully the Melon hop has a low alpha acid meaning it wouldn't add much bitterness so I added the Topaz too, as planned, and adjusted the recipe. I substituted the missing late addition with more Topaz, to balance out the recipe again. Next time I shall label my hops and put them in addition order, lesson learned.

Melon-wise, I went for honeydew and cantaloupe varieties which I chopped and placed in the freezer for a few days. Freezing breaks down the cell walls and extract as much flavour as possible. My intention was to add the melon during the last 10 minutes of the boil and then add the remainder once primary fermentation has completed. I defrosted the melon, blitzed in a blender and placed the pulp into a muslin sack. I kept the leftover juice in a jug, which surprisingly amounted to around 1 litre’s worth!

I was hoping to use “The Behemoth”, the name given to my new bespoke chiller. Unfortunately, I was still awaiting a couple of camlock fittings which meant my old chiller was jerry-rigged for one last run. Other than the aforementioned hiccups, the rest of the brewday went OK. I definitely had a better grip on the kit than the first time and was pleased with the progress. Fermentation finished without a hitch and a few days before bottling I threw in the remainder of the melon juice and pulp.

The end result is a juicy saison that borders on an IPA, just perfect for summer drinking! The saison elements are definitely a lot more subdued than my Sorachi Saison as the yeast haze clears down nicely with a bit of chilling. I’m pretty pleased with this one I've entered it into the Brewdog Homebrew comp… wish me luck!

Note: No brew day photos for this post as I was between phones.

Grain Bill...
5 kg Vienna (77%)
1.5 kg Maris Otter (23%)

Hop Bill...
15 g Topaz Leaf (16.3% Alpha) @ First wort
30 g Hull Melon Leaf (5.6% Alpha) @ First wort
30 g Hull Melon Leaf (5.6% Alpha) @ Hop stand
20 g Topaz  Leaf (16.3% Alpha) @ Hop stand
40 g Hull Melon Leaf (5.6% Alpha) @ Dry hop (2 days)

Misc Bill...
1 kg Melon + Juice @ 10 Minutes (Boil)
1 kg Melon + Juice @ 10 Minutes (Boil)

Single step infusion at 64°C for 90 Minutes
Fermented ambiently with White Labs Belgian Saison II Yeast (WPL566)

OG: 1.052
FG: 1.012
ABV: 5.2%