Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The obvious

Can I just say how much I love Oberon?
'Cause it's pretty great.
Even though its name is Oberon.

Lagunitas Lucky 13.alt Review

Hasn't been a beer review on here for awhile, so I thought I would post one that I put on beeradvocate earlier.

Lagunitas Lucky 13.alt

This is supposedly a blonde version of the normal Lucky 13 version (Large Mondo Red).

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into an English pint. Actually thought I was trying the other version at first (Large Mondo Red) and then realized that this is the .alt version.

Pours a sort of clear golden color with a slight amber hue. Not much of a head on there, carbonation seems prominent.

Aroma has sort of a sweet malt scent with a very distinctive kind of hops that I can't remember which one it is (Amarillo?). Some elements of citrus/grapefruit.

Hmm, taste is more complex than I was expecting. The hops hit you right away, citrus/grapefruit, with a little spiciness. This is followed by a sweet malty taste, which then has a little bit of a dry and bitter finish.

Mouthfeel is great, perfect carbonation, medium bodied. That sweet malty taste with a hint of the hops sticks to your mouth minutes after a sip.

Overall it is a pretty solid beer. This reminds me of all Lagunitas' beers. Above average, but nothing that blows you out of the water. Solid beer, would definitely drink again.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Homebrew Belgian Tripel IPA

I now feel comfortable enough with my latest beer to write something about it.  I took a recipe found elsewhere on the Internet and slightly modified it to match what was available to me.

One difference from that recipe was an extra 1/2 lb of candi sugar because it was sold in 1 pound bags and I didn't want any extra sitting around.  The other was because I could not find Amarillo hops.  I semi-arbitrarily replaced them with U.K. Challenger (somewhat similar AA%) hops, which worked out fairly well.

Since I was borrowing equipment and was limited in what was available to me, I simply fermented for 3 weeks in primary (bucket).  I was able to get a separate bottling bucket from Tim when the time came, but in a fit of laziness ended up not using it and instead auto-siphoned straight from the primary into our bottles.  The result is a significant amount of sediment, but that has settled out nicely and with a careful pour will mostly stay in the bottle.

Finally, a note on carbonation.  I added priming sugar to the batch during the bottling process, but it has not seemed to kick it up much.  It remains a little flat even after 3+ weeks in the bottle.  Sadly, I suspect it will stay like this.  Fortunately, I have noticed very, very slight carbonation build up on the walls of the glass for the last couple bottles I have had even though no head forms.

My main theory for this issue is a lack of healthy yeast survival to this point, and the beer could have used additional yeast at some point.  3 weeks in the primary and a high ABV (estimated 10-11%, but I didn't take readings) might have tired them out.

In the end, there are things I would change, but the flavor is there.  This is definitely a very hoppy, high alcohol beer.  Even with its problems, it tastes good!