Batch No. 5 – Nelson Amber Ale

I’m calling this one ‘Nelson Amber Ale‘ because it features Nelson Sauvin hops and I’m brewing it in Nelson. I used the handy Kit & Extract Beer Designer spreadsheet to work out the recipe quantities. It’s basically in the style of an American Pale Ale or an American Amber Ale, but more towards amber than pale since I used all amber malt plus a little medium crystal steeped grains. I used US-05 yeast harvested from batch no. 3. Fermentation started very quickly, within a few hours, and is still amazingly active – it’s been bubbling like crazy for 3 days.

Here’s the recipe:

Nelson Amber Ale

Total volume: 25L
Boil volume: 10L

Amber Malt Extract – 3.75kg
Medium Crystal – 0.25kg
Dextrose – 0.25kg

Summit (15.9%) – 5g @ 60 mins
Nelson Sauvin (12.6%) – 5g @ 60 mins
Summit – 5g @ 20 mins
Nelson Sauvin – 5g @ 20 mins
Summit – 5g @ 20 mins
Nelson Sauvin – 5g @ 20 mins
Summit – 10g @ 10 mins
Nelson Sauvin – 10g @ 10 mins
Summit – 15g @ 0 mins
Nelson Sauvin – 15g @ 0 mins
Summit – 15g dry-hop
Nelson Sauvin – 15g dry-hop

Yeast: US-05

Procedure: see Updated Extract Brewing Process

Calculated Beer Profile:
OG – 1.052
FG – 1.012
IBU – 33.4
EBC – 28.4
BU:GU – 0.64
ABV – 5.5%

Brew night went fairly smoothly but, as usual, some mistakes were made. The main mistake was that I over-did it with the top up water and ended up with close to 28L volume instead of 25L. I forgot about the 2L volume of starter beer that I had to add. Then I realised I had forgotten to add the dextrose so I decided to increase the amount of dextrose from 0.25kg to 0.5kg to compensate a bit for the extra volume, and the dextrose required more water to dissolve. But it still should be good, the calculated beer profile just changes slightly to:

OG – 1.050
FG – 1.011
IBU – 29.8
EBC – 26.3
BU:GU – 0.60
ABV – 5.4%

The fermenation is very active and due to the reduced head space, I’m getting plenty of blow-out through the airlock. As with batch no. 4 (Coopers Stout), I’m dealing with it by just letting it blow through the airlock and then, when it calms down, remove, clean, sanitise and replace the airlock.


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    • Andy on 2 March 2011 at 12:58 am
    • Reply

    After tasting your previous batches I’m rather keen on the idea of trying your latest few too. I was seriously impressed with your IPAs, and couldn’t detect any hint of what I think of as the classic homebrew givaway taste or smell (I’ve had that in a few of my batches). I actually preferred your IPA to the ones at the Freehouse, maybe because it wasn’t as hoppy.

      • on 4 March 2011 at 11:40 am
      • Reply

      I think you mean the APA – I was happy with the way that turned out. The Blackrock kit IPA was a nice enough beer but it doesn’t have near the hops character needed to call it an IPA, it was more like the lager kits, don’t understand why they call it an IPA. Yeah, the IPAs tend to have more hop bitterness and the APAs are more about hop flavour. The Freehouse Dead Good IPA is a bit on the bitter side for my liking. I usually prefer the APA style. Best example from a brewery around Nelson is Founders Fair Maiden – a great beer, try it sometime.

  1. Hey Aidan. Just found your web site. Looks interesting. I’ll have a good mooch around.
    I couldn’t resist adding that Tui refers to itself as an IPA as well. How wrong is that?? In fact their new packaging seems to emphasise it, maybe because IPAs are becoming more popular and they think they can cash in. And don’t get me started on the accuracy of their Monteiths Radler.

      • on 8 April 2011 at 5:56 pm
      • Reply

      Hi Matt, Yeah I don’t get how they can call Tui an IPA

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