Brew Day 2: Amarillo Pale Ale

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On January 29th I brewed up an all amarillo hop pale ale.  I used amarillo to dry hop my last pale ale and I loved the aroma (the burps were amazing, too) so I wanted to get a better understanding of the hop.  I threw the recipe together in BeerSmith a few days before and away I went:

Started by getting my strike water up to temps
Started by getting my strike water up to temps
Added a little gypsum, decided to start playing with my water this batch
Added a little gypsum, decided to start playing with my water this batch
Mash temp hit after adding some hot water.
Mash temp hit after adding some hot water.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

First reading was 5.6, added 1/4 tsp of lactic acid, then 5.5, so added another 1/4 tsp and hit 5.4
First reading was 5.6, added 1/4 tsp of lactic acid, then 5.5, so added another 1/4 tsp and hit 5.4
All amarillo for this pale ale
All amarillo for this pale ale
Set it, and forget it
Set it, and forget it

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sparge water getting heated up.  This time I gave it a boost with some boiled water
Sparge water getting heated up. This time I gave it a boost with some boiled water
Fly sparged again.  Thinking about trying to batch sparge next time...
Fly sparged again. Thinking about trying to batch sparge next time…
Starting gravity of 1.040, for an efficiency of about 74.7%
Starting gravity of 1.040, for an efficiency of about 74.7%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Got boiling a little quicker this time around
Got boiling a little quicker this time around
My new immersion wort chiller setup.  Used two 20lb bags of ice and a recirculation pump
My new immersion wort chiller setup. Used two 20lb bags of ice and a recirculation pump
Took 26 minutes to cool down to pitch temp.  Might be quicker with a better pump
Took 26 minutes to cool down to pitch temp. Might be quicker with a better pump

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Original gravity of about 1.045-46, a tad lower than planned
Original gravity of about 1.045-46, a tad lower than planned
In the fermenter and waiting or dry hop
In the fermenter and waiting or dry hop

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A few key notes from this brew day:

-When I went to my LHBS to get the ingredients I bought the wrong calcium I needed for water adjustments.  I purchased calcium carbonate (chalk) instead of calcium chloride so I could not adjust my water like I wanted to.

-My first reading of the mash temp it came in a few degrees lower than I intended.  The problem was I didn’t have and hot water on standby to boost it up!  I ended up microwaving some water (with a chopstick in the water and an oven mitt, of course) and got it to my target temperature.

-This was my first time adjusting mash pH using lactic acid.  It was easier than I had thought, and calibrating my pH meter was no problem either.  I just need to find some calibration fluid with a longer shelf life.

-My new stainless steel immersion chiller worked great!  I just need to get a pump with a higher gallon per minute rating someday.  This one will work fine for now, cooling from boiling to 65F only took 26 minutes!

-I only had had about 5.25 gallons of wort in the fermenter.  I’m not sure where I went wrong, but I am thinking I didn’t completely drain my mash tun after the sparge.  I need to lift up on the grain and let it drain some more next time.

I should be dry hopping this batch in the next few days with the last oz of amarillo.  Time to start planning my next batch!

 

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