Sunday, April 8, 2012

Spring Forward Pale Ale

Well, let me start off by saying I don't know what style this beer is. It is not a typical Belgian Pale, nor is it a Wit beer. It is a blend of the two and uses american hops. It just sounded like a beer I would want to drink on a warm day or evening, so I went for it. I only had about 2 hours and 15 minutes to brew this beer and based on some new information about mash conversion times from some local commercial brewers I decided to give a short mash a shot. When I say short, I mean the time it took me to raise my sparge water up to temp, about 15 minutes. The brewers I talked to said you can get away with a 7-10 minute mash. In fact one of the bigger breweries here in San Diego actually uses this method, and their beers are amazing.

I wanted a beer that was cirtusy, fruity, slightly tart, hoppy, and just a refreshing beer. I used some grapefruit zest, and amarillo hops to get the citrusy/fruity aroma and flavor profile. Add to that the Belgian yeast and I figure I can get quite a bit of citrus fruit out of this beer. I also wanted a slight tartness, so I used 10% acid malt. I am not sure how this percentage of malt will affect the tartness but I figure I can start at 10% and build up from their. In addition I used about 30% wheat malt.

Ingredients: US 2-Row, White Wheat, Carapils, Acidulated Malt, Amarillo @60, 15, 5, Grapefruit Zest @ Flameout, WLP550 Belgian Ale Yeast.


  1. Interesting about the mash time. So how was your efficiency affected? Or did you notice any other cons?

  2. My efficiency was slightly off, but i attribute that more to diluting with too much sparge water. Other than that (without trying the final product) I didn't see any downside.

  3. This beer cam out different than expected (I figured saison/Belgian pale like) more of a Belgian Wheat. I ended up dry hopping with some older Simcoe and although they aded a nice hop aroma it wasn't as citrusy as I had hoped. I think with a few tweaks, mainly hopping and adding citrus zest post fermentation as all this beer could become one of my go to spring/summer seasonals.