Irish Red Ale

What a boring style, yet super common and popular among homebrewers. Admittedly, I made a version of one with my first ever brewing effort. Eeech. Equipped with better.. equipment, increased knowledge, and a Quiet Man viewing party to plan for, I made this beer again!

The fermentables were similar, but all-grain this time (and freshly calculated):

  • Crisp Pale Ale – 75%
  • Cara-Red – 8%
  • Crystal 120 degrees L – 8%
  • Roasted Barley – 5%

Mashed at a 3:1 ratio @ 149 degrees Fahrenheit for 60 minutes, I added Fuggles pre-boil, and more Fuggles and some EKG during a 90 minute boil. It was a little colder in the spring, so the Irish Ale yeast under-performed a bit. The real winning difference was two teaspoons of gypsum added to the mash and boil; seems like the Vergennes-Panton Water District has some soft water.

With certainty, this beer was 1000% better than the first one. Clarity is impeccable, and it has a pleasant dry flavor (149 degrees was well within the optimum operating temperature of the beta-amylase enzyme). Low amount of foam, but after a few weeks the roasted flavors subside and meld, producing a nice touch of caramel sweetness on the finish.

About: Esteban

Esteban is the Editor in Chief of RantingEsteban.com. Check out his page on Facebook, follow him on Twitter @RantingEsteban, or send him an email.

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