Today I decided to brew something a little lighter than my previous batches. I looked in my closet and realized that almost everything I had brewed was high gravity and knew this would be a good time to brew a nice session beer. I am aiming to make this as low in alcohol as possible while still having it seem like beer. So I went with a Scottish 60/-.
The beer. This beer is low in alcohol, but not in flavor. There are two schools of thought when it comes to making Scottish ales. You can carmalize your first runnings to give you more flavor or you can use specialty malts. I went with the specialty malts. Doing BIAB doesn't give you the option of just taking your first runnings without a few extra steps thrown in. So I went with a small amount of Maris Otter as a base with a bit of light Munich, crystal 40L, and chocolate malt. A small bit of Kent Goldings at the beginning of the boil will balance out the residual sugars.
The process. Today's brew session went very well. I mashed in at 158 and hit my strike temp perfectly. While mashing I managed to rack my bochet into secondary and bottle my cider. I added some acid blend to the cider and over did it a bit unfortunately. Some of the cider was bottled still and I carbed others. I also tried out two different carbonation levels. So I can see what works best with the ciders. My mash temp held through the mash and the boil and cooling went off without a hitch. Nothing really out of the plan happened. I did try something new today and that was straining my cooled wort through a sanitized fine mesh bag while putting it into the fermenter to reduce the amount of trub in primary. It amazed me how much material the bag caught. For only .2oz of hops there was about a tennis ball sized amount of break material that was filtered out. Hopefully this helps with a small soapy flavor in my of my beers.
The stream. I did stream again today, with only two small hiccups. The first being that I wasn't connected to my wifi for the first hour and had to restart the stream after I switched that on. The second when I dropped the phone I was using as my camera and had to put it back together. Luckily the people watching were understanding. There were a few people watching a chatting with me while I was brewing. This made things a lot more enjoyable. Anyone who knows me knows that I love to talk about beer and love answering peoples questions about it. I walked people through a bit of my process and answered some basic questions. Thanks to everyone that tuned in and asked questions. I hope I will be able to do this most weeks I brew. I love being able to help people make beer while I am making beer. Plus, it forces me to step up my game a bit if people are watching and asking questions I should be able to answer them.
Once again, thank you to those who watched the stream. I should be making a cider next week, but I am not entirely sure yet. Until next time....