Brew 4: “It was supposed to be Red” Ale.

In November 2014 my brother (James) and I were in Graham’s garage brewing a second batch of W3 wheat beer* and talking about what beer we’d like to make next. James’ idea was simple “a red ale, that was so hoppy it would taste dank”. For colour we aimed at Magic Rock’s Rapture, and for hoppiness we went high, using a similar hopping regiment as Dog Fish Head’s 60-min IPA (or the clone version in ‘Clone Brews’ by Tess & Mark Szamatulski), but with different hops including Amarillo, which I’ve been keen to try out for a while.. I toned down the ‘dank-ness’ James was after so it was actually palatable.

The recipe was as follows and includes a small Dried Malt extract addition**:

Malt: Weight
Marris Otter 4.0kg
Crystal Malt (light) 0.5kg
Roasted Malt 0.5kg
Pale DME 0.16kg

Hops: Weight Time in boil
Amarillo 30.0 grams Start of boil
(90 mins)
Cascade 10.0 grams 60 mins
Amarillo 9.0 grams 30 mins
Cascade 9.0 grams 30 mins
Amarillo 8.0 grams 15 mins
Cascade 8.0 grams 15 mins
Amarillo 7.0 grams 0 mins
Cascade 7.0 grams 0 mins

It took a while to get round to brewing (six months) but it is now ready and was at 4.5-4.7% before bottling.

Red Ale

Its not quite as red as we hoped (see **) but… well… its pretty damn good (Also, ooo look I got shiny new glass bottles). It has great floral/citrusy aroma and a largely citrusy taste, with a caramelly-malty sweetness to it too.

The night after I took James his half of the beer I received the following text…


… which I am taking as high praise indeed.


*which didn’t turn out as well, due to me trying to ‘improve’ recipe and then having our first quantity of hops bubble out of the pan and onto the ring burner, to which our solutions was “ah, we’ll just chuck handfuls in and hope for the best”.

** partly because I didn’t buy enough caramalt and partly to use up the DME I used in my barley wines (post about that soon).

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