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Christmas Quad

I’m laying down a Christmas Quad today; I’m aiming for fruitcake in a glass. I took some ideas from Denny and Stan Heronymus

18.00 lbs Belgian Pilsner
2.00 lbs Munich
2.00 lbs Special B
1.00 lbs CaraMunich II

2.00 lbs. D-180 syrup
1.00 lbs. Light, unsulphered molasses

1.25 oz Centennial 60 min
1.00 oz. Strisselspalt 0 min

0.50 oz coriander
0.125 oz blade mace
0.125 oz black cardamom

1.130 OG
WY 3787; 6mm / ml / dP pitch rate
Two-step O2 dosage at pitch and pitch +24h

Pitch at 72F; hold for three days
Ramp up to 84F; hold until terminal gravity

Lager for 16 weeks

… let’s see how this one turns out. I have been itching to use black cardamom in a beer since I smelled it at Penzey’s last month.

I’m kinda leery of the molasses. It’s a really strong flavor and will tend to dominate the beer. If that’s what you want, OK, but I’d advise you to consider something like demerara sugar instead. I’d also recommend you start the fermentation at a much lower temp. No more than mid 60s.

That low for start, or never allow it to ramp, or both?

That low for start, or never allow it to ramp, or both?[/quote]

I like to start that yeast 62-65 and after 5-7 days let it start rising to wherever it wants to go. Controls the banana esters a bit.

[quote=“Denny”]
I like to start that yeast 62-65 and after 5-7 days let it start rising to wherever it wants to go. Controls the banana esters a bit.[/quote]

I took your advice and have been holding it at 65F since last night. I was surprised at the intensity of esters nonetheless when I opened the freezer this morning. I’ve used 3787 a few times before, but I have to admit I was surprised to see a nearly 2G krausen on one of my fermenters this morning (I put the beer in two 5G’s).

I was really hung up on the molasses idea (I love molasses), but I opted to cut it down to a half pound and replaced the balance with beet sugar; so basically brown sugar. Thanks for the advice, Denny.

The pre-pitch samples were really nice. I think that even 0.125oz of blade mace was a bit high as it was clearly the bright note and I was hoping for a bit more balance. But, this is a long road.

Cheers.

Good luck on it!

Both carboys are out in the garage; ambient temp floats between 94F and 76F. Temp in the carboy registers at 75F this afternoon.

I pulled my first sample today; 200mL. Gravity is 1.044 (degassed). OG was a touch high at 1.135. I roused the yeast in both to see how things develop.

The nose is quite warm with the mace playing a large role still. Esters are there and wonderful. Not sure how much of the nose are fusels vs. ethyl, but my small sample indicates that it’s mostly ethyl.

There is a very, very subtle smokiness that another person picked up that I can’t quite find.

I may pull 750mL and dose it with B. clausenii to see what happens.

Cheers.

Is this still in the bottle?

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