Crooked Rooster — A Belgian Pumpkin Ale

October 7, 2009 at 12:33 pm 3 comments

So I got the idea for this beer reading the latest Zymurgy (by the way, if you are not a member of the American Homebrewer’s Association, you most certainly should be). AHA’s National Homebrew Competition was covered with an awesome sounding beer in the Spice/Herb/Vegetable Category: “Mashing Pumpkins Spiced Saison”. Now beers like this are why I homebrew.

So it was love at first sight and I needed to get down to the homebrew store.  I got my grains, but to my dismay, there was no Saison yeast to be had. But no need to panic, that’s what RDWHAHB is all about, right? So I decided to go with the trusty Wit yeast for some of the spicy phenolic character to bring out the nutmeg. Here is what I ended up wit (heh):

Batch Size: 10.00 gal
Boil Size: 12.27 gal
Estimated OG: 1.060 SG
Estimated Color: 11.2 SRM
Estimated IBU: 19.1 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 80.00 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Amount        Item                                      Type         % or IBU
15 lbs 15.0 ozPale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM)            Grain        80.77 %
12.1 oz       Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM)                   Grain        3.85 %
12.1 oz       Caramel/Crystal Malt - 80L (80.0 SRM)     Grain        3.85 %
12.1 oz       White Wheat Malt (2.4 SRM)                Grain        3.85 %
1.80 oz       Goldings, B.C. [4.20 %]  (60 min)         Hops         11.6 IBU
0.95 oz       Saaz [7.70 %]  (20 min)                   Hops         7.5 IBU
0.33 cup      Nutmeg (Boil 10.0 min)                    Misc
2.00 lb       Pumpkin (Mash 60.0 min)                   Misc
4.00 items    Cinnamon Stick (Boil 5.0 min)             Misc
6.00 items    Cloves, Whole (Boil 10.0 min)             Misc
1 lbs 8.3 oz  Brown Sugar, Dark (50.0 SRM)              Sugar        7.69 %
1 Pkgs        Belgian Witbier (Wyeast Labs #3944)       Yeast-Wheat                

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Light Body
Total Grain Weight: 18.22 lb
Single Infusion, Light Body
Step Time     Name               Description                         Step Temp
60 min        Mash In            Add 27.33 qt of water at 164.6 F    153.0 F
10 min        Mash Out           Heat to 168.0 F over 2 min          168.0 F       

didn't take OG
Wild ferment on 2 gallons
Outdoor: 13 2/3 brix

I was hoping this one would be good. I’m a big fan of pumpkin, but am not impressed with most pumpkin beers. They are mostly budweiser with a little pumpkin pie spice. But this beer was something special. A real Winner. It sports a light copper color with a light and refreshing taste but a suprisingly robust mouthfeel that screams pumpkin! It is truly one of my favorite beers to date, and sadly, I just took the last sip. It was quite poetic as I went to poor a glass before sitting down to write this that I heard the all to familiar “Hissssss” of the last glass.

It may have been short, but it was quite the trip with this beer. I may just be crazy, because this beer only weighed in at about about 5.5%ABV, but I think there was a little extra kick in there. Needless to say, I’m brewing this again. SOON.

Sidenote: You may notice in the notes that I also had a little extra, so I threw it in 1 Gallon jugs and let it go WILD! I put one in the fermenter and one in the porch just to see what would happen. I started by puting a coffee filter over the top to keep out bugs and the like, but that proved to be too much of a barrier. So I just decided to go big or go home and opened them up to whatever would like to go all primordial on my wort. When those finish fermenting, I’ll let you know if this is a good idea or not. I’m hoping for the best. Next time I try this, I will probably stick an airlock on at the first sign of activity to limit the sheer mass of bugs (I am referring to the big ones and the microorganisms here) I get in the fermenter.


Entry filed under: Batches. Tags: , , .

More Pumpkin, Please! The Great Pumpkin Beer Festival

3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Danno  |  October 8, 2009 at 12:05 pm

    I’ll be there for Thanksgiving. Just sayin’.

    • 2. Alex  |  October 8, 2009 at 7:46 pm

      I’ll have some good pumpkin beer and pumpkin pie. I think we’re off of the bacon theme and on to the pumpkin theme!

  • 3. Danno  |  October 8, 2009 at 8:14 pm

    Bacon beer being somewhat problematic and all.


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