Saturday, July 23, 2011

Now bring us some figgy pudding...

...and a cup of good cheer.  Today I brewed an ale that I've been wanting to get going for a while; the English counterpart of my Père Noël de Bruxelles Belgian Christmas Ale.  Ah yes, this is the fabled Figgy Pudding Ale that I have been planning for a while, a spiced English-style barleywine/old ale-ish beer with mission figs added in.  Since the Nashville water is horrendous right now (I think they call it an "algae bloom," I call it "the water tastes like potting soil,") I was forced to brew with carbon-filtered drinking water and Burton Water Salts (it had been a while since I had used those!), which should actually yield some great results.  After oversleeping this morning and getting a late start, I really had a great brew day.  Things went smoothly and cleanly, and by the end of it, I had a wonderful high-gravity brew that smelled of Christmas.  Seriously, this was one of the best-smelling beers on brew day that I have ever made.  Hopefully that bodes well for this one as I let it ferment to perfection.  Here's the recipe (2.5 gallons):

7 lbs. Maris Otter
.5 lbs. Biscuit Malt
.5 lbs. Amber Malt
.5 lbs. Belgian Dark Candi syrup, 90L (amazing stuff)

Mash at 152° for 45 minutes and then raise to 158° for the last 15

1 oz. Challenger hops (7.7%AA) @90 min
.5 oz. East Kent Goldings (7.2%AA) @15

1.5 lbs dried black mission figs (these were amazingly good)@10
.5 T cinnamon @1
.5 T nutmeg @1
1 T ginger @1

Danstar Nottingham Yeast (no starter made)

OG: 1.096 (oh yeah!)
IBU: 47
Anticipated SRM:19

Also added some French oak to my Belgian Christmas ale today.  I've been soaking some oak chips in rum to add to the Figgy Pudding Ale.  Delicious!

Additionally, Ryan of Ryan Brews fame (check him out!) has asked me to do a review of the Belgian Table Beer for his blog and the HomebrewTalk recipe database.  It is delicious and I am looking forward to giving it a review.

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