I am now planning my 3rd batch with batch 1 bottled and batch 2 still in the fermentor. I have yet to taste any finished beer but it is time to get prepared to brew my next batch. (As I mentioned in the previous post, brewing beer is a bit like growing a garden). And my next batch will be another step in the learning process as I take on an extract batch. The difference between extract brewing and kit brewing is that you use unhopped malt extract and do a boil to add in bittering and finishing hops at different times during the boil. I will also use some speciality grains to add an additional dimension and fresh flavour to the beer.
I am planning to brew an American Pale Ale. It is a hoppy style of beer that differs from a standard pale ale (or English style pale ale) in that it features American originating hop varieties such as Cascade and usually in higher doses. The yeast typically used for American Pale Ales produces less fruity flavours than standard ale yeast. One of the most well known commercial examples is Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, a beer I enjoyed very much when I lived in the States.
I have some of my ingredients (hops & yeast) already ordered (from BrewShop.co.nz) as well as a new fermentor tap (to resolve this problem), so I just need to pick up some malt extract from Bin Inn. I have a rough idea of how I’m going to do it but I have not finalised that yet. I think I will write out a set of instructions for myself to make sure I’ve planned everything in advance and not end up running around like a chicken with it’s head chopped off in the middle of the whole thing. Here’s my ingredient list so far:
- Safale US-05 Yeast – 1 packet (11.5g)
- Medium Crystal Malt – not sure of amount yet, probably 250g
- Simcoe Hops pellets (for bittering) – not sure of amount yet
- Cascade Hops pellets (for finishing) – not sure of amount yet
- 3kg Liquid malt extract – perhaps 1 can of Coopers Light for the boil and 1 jar of a cheaper amber (Brewmaster) to add after the boil
For my method I will be using John Palmer’s How To Brew as my primary guideline with some other ideas and simplifications, etc. coming from what I pick up on the forums. I found a good set of videos on YouTube which give an easy to follow demonstration of the process similar to that outlined by Palmer. The main deviation is that I will not boil all the malt extract – my 12L brewpot is not quite large enough and from what I’ve learned from the forums, there is no need. I may not follow this exactly but I think my process will be fairly similar once I have it planned.