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Zuul Drool Brown Ale

This time around, I wanted to try a brown ale. During my research, I’ve discovered there are several styles of brown ale. The one I decided on was a nutty brown ale brewed traditionally in Northern England. Looking through my books, I settled on Nutcastle Brown Ale from Brewing Classic Styles.

One of my favorite brown ales is Moose Drool from Big Sky Brewery. And there’s nothing better than watching Ghost Busters with a pint of of this fine brown ale. So I decided to pay homage to both Moose Drool and to Ghost Busters by calling this Zuul Drool. Not only does it sound cool, it also rhymes!

When I went to the homebrew store, they were pretty much out of yeast, so we substituted the London Ale with Nottingham. I also wasn’t interested in buying canned English Pale Ale LME, so I went with some bulk Briess Pilsen which is about half the cost. The Kent Goldings had a higher Alpha Acid, so I cut back on the bittering addition a bit to compensate. I didn’t use any conversions, just guessed.

I’ve been having trouble with too much sediment getting into the bottle. When pouring a brew, I have floating chunks of protein and yeast. Normally, I just dump the wort into the fermenter. This time, I wanted to see if I can leave as much of it I can in the brewpot. I decided I’d swirl the wort and let it rest. This should concentrate the sediment to the center of the pot. Then I would siphon off the wort into the fermenter. Unfortunately, there is so much cold break and I would lose 1/4 of the wort. Frustrated, I poured the wort back into the brewpot and decided I’d strain it instead. Unfortunately, I didn’t have any cheesecloth. So I layered on coffee filters (everything sanitized) onto the strainer. That worked….kinda. The filters probably got clogged up and the wort didn’t drain. Eventually, I said to hell with it and poured everything into the fermenter. Up to this point, I’ve only done a single stage fermentation. So I bought a secondary fermenter and will rack it over in hopes of clarifying it that way.

I hope I didn’t contaminate this batch with all the fussing I was doing with the wort. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.


BeerTools Pro Color Graphic

Zuul Drool
11-C Northern English Brown Ale
Extract w/ Steeping Grains
Batch #4
Size: 5.0 gal
Calories: 178.03 kcal per 12.0 fl oz

Original Gravity: 1.054 (1.040 – 1.052)
|==========================#=====|

Terminal Gravity: 1.013 (1.008 – 1.014)
|======================#=========|

Color: 16.26 (12.0 – 22.0)
|==============#=================|

Alcohol: 5.26% (4.2% – 5.4%)
|======================#=========|

Bitterness: 26.8 (20.0 – 30.0)
|==================#=============|

Ingredients:

  • 6.5 lb CBW® Pilsen Light Liquid (Malt Extract)
  • .75 lb Special Roast Malt
  • .5 lb Victory® Malt
  • .5 lb Crystal Malt 40°L
  • .25 lb Pale Chocolate Malt
  • 1 oz East Kent Goldings (6.5%) – added during boil, boiled 60 min
  • .5 oz East Kent Goldings (6.5%) – added during boil, boiled 5 min
  • 1.0 ea Danstar 3767 Nottingham yeast

Process:

Steep specialty grains in 3 gallons of water for 30 min at 150 degrees. Add 1/2 LME and bring to boil. When reaching a rolling boil, add 1oz hops for 60 minutes. Add last half of LME to boil at 15 minutes. Add .5 oz hops for last 5 minutes. Cool wort and transfer to primary. Add water to top off to 5 gal. Pitch re-hydrated yeast. Ferment 57-70 degrees.

Notes:

  • Recipe based on Nutcastle Brown Ale from Brewing Classic Styles.
  • 1.10.2011 – Racked to secondary. Gravity at 1.018. Tasted really nice. Some sweetness, a nice nutty flavor and low hop. I think this will turn out really well.
  • 1.24.2011 – Bottled with 1/2 c of corn sugar. I wanted a lower carbonation. FG is still at 1.018. The target was 1.012. ABV 4.8%. Seems a bit sweet. I’m interested in seeing what it tastes like when fully carbonated and cold.
  • 2.4.2011 – Tried it for the first time. The beer was basically flat. It didn’t carbonate very well at all. I think it had a really good flavor, but the lack of carbonation was so off-putting, its hard to tell. Since I had a really slow fermentation, I wonder if it wasn’t fully bottle conditioned. Either that, or the yeast health isn’t the best. It could also be the fact I under-primed it. Anyway, I decided to move 1 six pack to a warmer room (it was bottle conditioning at about 64 F). This should speed up the bottle-conditioning, I’d hope. I also took a 1 liter bottle (screw cap) and dropped in two Coopers Carbonation Drops and screwed the cap back on. I’ll try the 1 liter and see if the extra sugar fixes the problem. I’ll also try one of the other bottles from the 6 pack and see if moving to a warmer place makes a difference.
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