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Saison Yeast/Grain Advice

For my second all-grain batch I am going to try to make a decent saison (swing for the fences, I say). My initial grain bill for a 5-gal batch is:

8lb Belgian Pilsner 2-row
1lb Maris Otter
1lb Vienna Malt
1lb Caramunich
.5lb Rye Malt

I want it to be dry but not TOO dry, with a little subtle malt flavor and I really dig fruity esters in this style. I was going to go with about 2.5-3oz of Strisselspelt hops and the White Labs 585 (Saison III).

BeerSmith says I’m in the range for the style, but that doesn’t really tell you a whole lot with regards to the flavor, esters, dryness, difficulty of the yeast, etc. Is the 585 a PITA?

Anything crazy with the above? I haven’t gotten any ingredients yet (though I do have about 3 lbs of Maris Otter laying around) so I can make changes.

Good recipe, but it looks a “wee heavy” to me. Take the base malt (pils) down to 7 lb and you’ll be in much better shape, unless you’re trying a no-sparge beer or something.

I have never tried the WLP585, not sure what to expect there. For what it’s worth, I had fantastic results with the dry Belle Saison yeast. Final gravity of 1.002 and deliciously spicy with a very slight lemony citrus character – very nice. I fermented mine at about 70 F. Took 3.5 weeks to get to 1.002.

I think with any yeast that you choose, you’ll want to be very patient and give it a lot of time to finish chewing the sugars down to a low gravity close to 1.000.

I’ve done three simple Saisons with Belle Saison. Two were all-Pils Patersbiers, one was all-Munich. The two all-pils beers were excellent (light, spicy, slightly tart). The all-Munich has so much malt character that the spicy, tart character gets lost; it’s good beer, but not very Saison-like. All three beers started at 62 or 63 F and finished in the 70s. All went to 1.002 in three weeks.

I thank you both kindly. I like the idea of cutting it back to 7lbs. I’m gonna give the WLP585 a try - I will report back in a couple of months.

I just wanted to report that this came out excellent and I have been enjoying it. It’s a little more malty and biere de garde style, with a rich coppery color (which shouldn’t be surprising I guess since I based the grain bill on a biere de garde). I had to substitute and use the WLP566 (Belgian Saison II) yeast, but it was quite good. Very malty, just slightly spicy. It probably would have benefited from a lengthy secondary, but I was running low on beer and quite anxious to try it out.

Thanks to all for your advice.

+1 to the Belle Saison yeast. Took my saison all the way down to 1.000. Hard to believe right? Took 3 weeks and has a wonderful spicy/ citrusy character to it. I think my recipe was all pils malt and a bit of Munich. With the fg that low, it still has some sweetness and body to it. Tasting it, one would think that it finished near 1.010.

I wonder if it would be possible to add a little of the Belle at secondary, and what that would do?

This is the best saison info you’ll ever find…Drew is the master of saison.

http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/a ... aisons.pdf

Thanks Denny, this is GOLD.

When it comes to saison, Drew is the man. He brought 17 variations to NHC one year.

[quote=“Denny”]This is the best saison info you’ll ever find…Drew is the master of saison.

http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/a ... aisons.pdf[/quote]

Not a single one under 1.069? :cry:

[quote=“krudler”]For my second all-grain batch I am going to try to make a decent saison (swing for the fences, I say). My initial grain bill for a 5-gal batch is:

8lb Belgian Pilsner 2-row
1lb Maris Otter
1lb Vienna Malt
1lb Caramunich
.5lb Rye Malt

I want it to be dry but not TOO dry, with a little subtle malt flavor and I really dig fruity esters in this style. I was going to go with about 2.5-3oz of Strisselspelt hops and the White Labs 585 (Saison III).

BeerSmith says I’m in the range for the style, but that doesn’t really tell you a whole lot with regards to the flavor, esters, dryness, difficulty of the yeast, etc. Is the 585 a PITA?

Anything crazy with the above? I haven’t gotten any ingredients yet (though I do have about 3 lbs of Maris Otter laying around) so I can make changes.[/quote]

saison is a huge specturm style wise

I’m thinking of brewing my house beer, lemon-rosemary blonde with this yeast.

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