I got an early start today and had good time brewing up a five gallon batch of Da Yooper’s House Pale Ale. After making a few adjustments to my system, I was looking for a relatively uncomplicated recipe to dial my numbers back in and was looking for a change of pace from the Irish Red, Dry Irish Stout, and Gaelic Ale that I currently have on tap. I ended up settling on this American Pale Ale recipe I found on the Homebrew Talk forum. There are currently over 50 pages of enthusiastic reviews on that particular thread, so I’m looking forward to tasting this one.
I’m pleased to report that I did not have a stuck mash this time, so I’m cautiously optimistic that the mash tun modifications I posted about recently may have done the trick. Until I have a few more consistently successful batches, though, the jury is still out.
I’m also really happy with the performance of the plate chiller. This is the third batch with the chiller, but the first with the new digital thermometer and cam lock fittings. I actually slightly under shot my pitching temperature, thanks to the 55 degree water temperature from the garage tap. The digital thermometer is pretty fast, but there is a slight lag between adjustments of the flow out of the boil kettle and the resulting temperature change at the chiller outlet. A little more practice should make it pretty easy to hit my pitching temperatures in the future, though.
Of course, there’s some room for improvement. My volume from the mash tun to the boil kettle and from the boil kettle to the fermenter were off ever so slightly as were my pre-boil and final gravity. A little fiddling with my BeerSmith equipment profile should do the trick, though.