#Brewday – Irish Red

20160223_170904_resizedHere we are on another #Brewday, A little belated but with good reason.
After the somewhat heavy session last night, things were a little painful in the cranium on Sunday. This resulted in me being unable to perform my usual Sunday brewing and general duties around the house. It was worth it for tunes, plenty of good food and copious amounts of beverages.

Before we begin with the brewing, remember that crazy Wyeast pack of Irish Yeast that I bought?
The one that needs the inner packet popped to release nutrients for the yeast?
Make sure this has been popped 3 hours before it is required as you need to allow this time for the nutrients to feed the yeast and in turn, the yeast to expand the packet. It mentions on the pack that you don’t have to wait until Its fully expanded, but better to be safe than sorry.

Now that you have popped that packet, lets get some brewing on the go!

715g Maris Otter
230g Cara-malt
230g Cara-red
60g Roast Barley
6g East Kent Goldings (Hops)
6g Fuggles (Hops)
1/4 tsp Irish Moss
Irish Yeast (Wyeast 1084 – Irish Ale)

Quoted from my previous post, here is the makings and idea behind the beer :-
This beer will be made up of my usual Maris Otter base malts but added a quantity of Cara-malt for sweetness, Cara-red for a rich red colour and Roast Barley which will help with the red colour but add a little bitter, Dryness and body to the finished beer.
Keeping it British, I’ll be using a quantity of East Kent Goldings & Fuggles which will ensure plenty of aroma without over bittering the beer too much.
The yeast is a bit of an anomaly to me as I’ve never used a Wyeast package before. The way It’s packaged means popping and inner package to release some nutrients and the package will expand over time. Once fully expanded I’ll need to use a quantity resulting liquid whilst the rest can be refrigerated and stored for up to a week.
The Irish Moss will help to clarify the beer and isn’t really a necessity in smaller quantities of beers as it promote the flavour.

20160223_173634_resizedAs usual, all the kit was cleaned and placed in a sink full of sanitiser ready for the fermenting later on.
The grains were already prepared with the exception of the barley which needed to be roasted. I weighed out 60g, spread them evenly over a baking dish and put in the oven at a pretty high temperature.
The barley was then roasted from its light and pale form into a dark and roasted from. The fragrance went from a gentle sweetness to a bitter roastiness.
The barley was then added to the brew bag with the grains and added to a pan with 2.4 litres of water brought up to 71 degrees.
I swirled the water around so that the grains soaked up the water and started to soften them.
The liquid remained reasonably light for some time but thankfully turned to an awesome amber to red colour. Not a colour I’ve seen in my brews before.
20160223_180031_resizedEvery ten minutes I stirred and kept at the correct temperature for an hour. With ten minutes left on the clock, I started to  heat up another 4 litres of water to around 77 degrees. The pan with the grains was brought up to 77 degrees too.

Once the sparging was complete, I measured out 6g of the East Kent Goldings and 6g of the Fuggles Hops and put the wort on to a high temperature to reach a rolling boil.
A timer was set for an hour at this point and all of the Fuggles hops were added with 1 hour left to go on the timer. When the timer had 30 minutes left to go, half of the East Kent Goldings hops were added. Finally with 15 minutes left to go, I added the last of the East Kent Goldings hops and the small quantity of Irish Moss. Once the timer started beeping, I took the pot off the heat.

With the boil complete, I prepared an ice bath which the pot sat in for around 20 minutes. When the temperature of the finished wort was at around 20 degrees, I was able to pass it through a filtered funnel into the demijohn.
As with the normal yeast sachets, I added three quarters of the Wyeast packet and mixed around thoroughly into the aerated mixture. The airlock is half filled with sanitized water, a bung is attached and the demijohn is sealed ready for fermentation.
The rest of the pack can be contained in a sanitised and sealed container in the fridge for up to a week. If the beer fails to react, add some more.

20160223_211406_resizedI’m a little more concerned with this beer as I’ve never used the Wyeast before. I’m not overly convinced by the stuff with small brews either. Although the nutrient pack was popped, it hadn’t released all the liquid or really expanded very well in the hours after popping. With a bit of luck, I’ll wake up to a bubbling and live wort in the demijohn.

Until tomorrow morning!

Update 1 – 24/02/2016

No change at all within the demijohn. Everything looks really flat with no sign of bubbling at all. I’m holding onto the fact that there is a slight change in the the airlock.
The pack says to leave it around 36 hours but with my issues earlier in the week, I’m concerned as to whether enough of a reaction will take place.

IMG_20160225_071255_resizedUpdate 2 – 25/02/2016

around 36 or so hours later, I’m please to say that everything is back on track again. Plenty of bubbling action in the airlock and the demijohn. Just need to be a little more patient.
I can sign a breath of relief now!

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