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An ESB without English malt?

So I have some 1028 up & running in a nice ESB that I made and I was thinking of making something else with the 1028 but I don’t have any English malt now. I have a couple different domestic 2-rows (Rahr and Cargill) along with a bunch of Munich, Vienna and specialty grains. Would you guys make an ESB w/o English malt or would you instead just make some sort of pale ale with English hops and the 1028? I have some Kent and Styrian Goldings and also some british crystal (Thomas Fawcett & Sons) and torrified wheat. Thoughts?

I’m doing just that, making my best bitters with domestic malt. I’m drinking one now that was made with Rahr pale ale malt, it is quite tasty. Rahr 2-row has good flavor, it ought to work well. Maybe not quite the same graham cracker flavor of MO but plenty good. I used a little Victory, and I’m still using British crystal.

I’m picking up a sack of Cargill 2-row on Friday, just to give it a trial run. I’ve heard it is as good as Rahr.

[quote=“tom sawyer”]I’m doing just that, making my best bitters with domestic malt. I’m drinking one now that was made with Rahr pale ale malt, it is quite tasty. Rahr 2-row has good flavor, it ought to work well. Maybe not quite the same graham cracker flavor of MO but plenty good. I used a little Victory, and I’m still using British crystal.

I’m picking up a sack of Cargill 2-row on Friday, just to give it a trial run. I’ve heard it is as good as Rahr.[/quote]
Okay, I can get on board with that. I was thinking of maybe adding something to try to mimic the characteristics of UK Pale Malt but I don’t even know if that’s possible. I have aromatic, biscuit, victory, various kinds of wheat (white, red, flaked, torrified), etc. So maybe I’ll just push ahead and use the Rahr, maybe a smidge of aromatic, the TF&S Dark Crystal, torrified wheat, Kent hops and 1028. I can’t see it being bad but I typically try to use American malt for American beers, UK malt for English, German grain for German beers, etc. Cheers!

try toasting a half pound of your 2-row in the oven at 350F for 10 minutes (stir a few times).
That should give you a little toasty character.

A-HA! Thanks for the toasting tip. I actually just found some UK Pale Malt I had leftover from my last ESB… it’s only three pounds but I will use that plus the Rahr. Here’s what I came up with (Mods: Sorry for posting a recipe in the general forum… my bad)

[b]ESB

5 lbs Rahr Pale Malt
3 lbs UK Pale Malt
8 oz Thomas Fawcett & Sons Dark Crystal I (80-93°L)
8 oz Torrified Wheat
4 oz Aromatic
1 oz Mt. Hood 6.1% for 60
1 oz Kent 4.9% for 15
1 oz Kent 4.9% for 5
Wyeast 1028 London

OG: 1051, fg: 1.012, srm: 8, ibu: 40, abv: 4.9%[/b]

You can see that I didn’t quite have the hops for this either so it’s Mt. Hood for bittering which I see absolutely no problem with! Cheers.

Funny story: I once made a Dortmunder lager that turned out way too dark for the style. Tasted vaguely of a Dort but I screwed it up somehow. So I submitted it to a major BJCP competition as an ESB. If you read the BJCP guidelines, ESB is a very broad category. My Dortmunder ended up taking either a 2nd or 3rd as an ESB in the competition.

No worries. English malts are certainly a plus, but apparently not required!! :mrgreen:

Rahr Pale Malt is an attempted facsimile of Maris Otter anyhow. I thought you were meaning Rahr 2-row in your original post.

Recipe looks good except for the Rahr Pale Ale :lol:

Are you taunting me, Ken? :lol:

Are you taunting me, Ken? :lol: [/quote]
Buddy, if I was taunting you, I’d asked if you’d make a Kolsch with 2-row instead of pilsner malt! :expressionless:

Are you taunting me, Ken? :lol: [/quote]
Buddy, if I was taunting you, I’d asked if you’d make a Kolsch with 2-row instead of pilsner malt! :expressionless: [/quote]

:cheers:

I ended up making this beer yesterday. The modified recipe looked like this:

5 lbs Rahr 2-row malt
3 lbs UK Pale Malt (I think it was Paul’s Malt)
4 oz Thomas Fawcett & Sons Dark Crystal I
4 oz Belgian Cara 45
8 oz Torrified Wheat
4 oz Belgian Aromatic
1 oz Mt. Hood 6.1% for 60
1 oz Kent 4.9% for 15
1 oz Kent 4.9% for 5
Wyeast 1028 London

This was a sort of “Clean out the closet / I want one more ESB with 1028” kind of thing but I really didn’t have the ingredients for it. My last ESB was all English-All-The-Time but I was short on ingredients this time. That said, the beer is bubbling away nicely and smells lovely. These Kent hops are great when used late in the boil and last time they were paired with Styrian Goldings which are great too. I know the 1028 is a little boring with all of the great English strains out there but it’s a classic in my book and I just got done with some 1968 and 1099 beers so I’m giving 1028 a shot now. I also have 2308 and 2124 currently up & running with lagers so the 1028 will be retired after this. Cheers Beerheads!

Looks good to me, more complicated than my usual recipe but rotating the specialty grains is a good idea. Do you always add some wheat in your bitters?

I remember looking through a recipe book (I think it was BEER CAPTURED) and I noticed that a bunch of bitters, BPAs, ESBs, etc. used torrified wheat. I found out that it’s a common ingredient in their ales and I also found out that it’s considered an adjunct… not sure why. I like the idea of adding wheat for head formation & stability and also for some mouthfeel. My English ales are usually MUCH simpler than this but it was just a way to get another batch out of this 1028. My finger’s are crossed! Cheers.

+1 to toasting the malt
+1 to using wheat

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