Wulf's Webden

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Autumn Saison

It has been a while since I last got round to homebrewing but last weekend I got another batch underway. This is the partner to my previous brew, my Ruby Saison. In other words, I’m using up the second part of that sachet of dried yeast (Mangrove Jack M27 Belgian Saison). I’ve used the same base recipe, Graham Wheeler’s take on Sarah Hughes Dark Ruby, and, as I did last time, have played quite fast and loose with the ingredients. This one has about 20% of mixed Crystal and Cara Red malt against the base of pale malt. I also added Belgian Candi Sugar to boost the original gravity (I got to 1.058) but, this time, I mixed that with an extract I made from crab apples from the garden.

It has been fermenting for a week and kept at a high temperature, about 28°C although I didn’t manage to hold it particularly level. Checking this morning, it has dropped down to about 1.001 (or even 1.000?). It is hard to read precisely on the hydrometer but, even adjusting for the temperature (1.003), I think that is about the lowest I have ever hit. It should be ready to bottle, which I’ll aim to do today or tomorrow.

A sneaky early sample suggested that, at this stage, it has a pleasant apple note coming through while still being in Belgian beer territory. I don’t know how much that will persist as it matures but it is good for now. My main challenge with the bottling is to try and keep sediment in the bottles down to an absolute minimum, given how gushing the Ruby Saison turned out to be, so there will be a higher than average amount of leftovers, which it would be a shame not to drink down young…

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