Batch #2 of the farmhouse ale recipe was intended to be nearly identical to batch #1, save for different yeast. This version was also brewed after my farmhouse ale tasting, meaning that I was able to incorporate desirable characteristics from well-received commercial examples. The general consensus from that tasting was the homebrewed farmhouse ale should have the following attributes:
- Appearance – hazy, orange hue similar to Logsdon Seizoen Bretta, with a fluffy white head and good lacing
- Aroma – nuanced, bright, lemon/lime, floral, phenolic, and moderate barnyard elements
- Taste – balanced light citrus, pear, lemon zest with slight tartness and touch of earthy Brett character
- Mouthfeel – mild ABV (5-6%), light body, high carbonation, easy to drink
Without tasting batch #1, however, I decided the only intentional change in this version would be three new yeast strains. That being said, unexpectedly running out of a few choice malts on brew day led to a slightly altered grain bill. Besides the malt issue, brew day was pretty uneventful. Rebrewing a recipe allows me to measure how consistent my brewing process is. Overall, I was very happy to see that OG and efficiency were almost identical between batch #2 and batch #1, indicating that I finally have my process dialed in.
For this version, I utilized commercial dregs from Hill Farmstead Arthur and Side Project Saison du Blé and my favorite foraged yeast (this was before my shift to using entirely foraged yeast). The HF and SP dregs were selected based on sensory feedback from the blind farmhouse ale tasting (these were the favorites of the bunch). When it came time to add the yeast, I decanted an entire starter bottle (~10 oz.) into each fermentor, respectively.
Farmhouse Ale #2
Style: 25B – Strong Belgian Ale – Saison
Description: Refreshing, moderately-bitter and moderate-strength beer with a very dry finish that features a fruity, spicy, and farmhouse yeast character with moderate tartness.
Batch size: 10 gallons
37% Domestic pilsner (Canada) @ Mash
26% Domestic flaked oats @ Mash
18% Domestic rye malt @ Mash
17% Domestic pale (Great Western) @ Mash
2% Domestic chocolate malt @ Sparge
10 IBU Willamette pellets @ 15
Hill Farmstead Arthur dregs
Side Project Saison du Blé dregs
Water treatment: Farmhouse Ales water profile
Mash technique: Infusion @ 144°F for 60 minutes
Kettle volume: 12.5 gallons
Boil duration: 60 minutes
Final volume: 10 gallons
Fermentation temp: 68°F
Notes: Brewed with Flynn on 11/29/2015. Measured pH values were 5.6/5.5/5.97/5.76/5.66 (mash/2nd run/3rd run/preboil/postboil).
No oxygen. Yeast was grown up in bottles, so exact pitching rate is unknown. Fermented at ambient temperatures (68-70°F) without temperature control.
Transferred to kegs on 1/24/2016. Pellicles were visable in all three fermentors.
Tasting notes from 2/13/2016.