Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Organic Belgian Witbier

Ah yes....my first stab at an all organic beer! This year, I had the awesome pleasure of being asked to be a groomsman in one of my friends weddings which is this June. We attended Hartwick College together and both swam and played water polo. Since college, we've also both gotten into triathlons, him a little more successful than I (injuries suck, but I'm back this year...watch out chap). So when he asked me to be in his wedding I was psyched and truly honored.

Knowing that I'm a home brewer and having sampled my beers in the past with much delight, he came up with an idea that to this day still makes me smile! I've been asked by the engaged couple to brew some beer to serve at there wedding. Of course I said yes, and since then I've been trying to improve my brewing. I should also mention that the bride to be is also a good friend of mine and one of my wife's best friends. She has also asked my wife to be in the wedding, which adds to the awesomeness of this event!!!

This Belgian Witbier will be the first tasting. We're all meeting back up at our alma matta on Jan 31st and will be sampling the witbier. I took the organic idea from the Bearded Brewer since his Inky's White Ale was such a hit and I also used his trick with orange marmalade instead of the orange peel. The other reason I chose all organic is because my friend, the groom to be, works for a company called Vote Solar. Vote Solar is a company that's committed to bringing solar energy into the mainstream through legislative ways like tax incentives and the such. With that in mind, I thought it might be a good idea, and fun, if I were to brew this as an organic beer. Now id I could only get a boil kettle that can operate on solar power. Anyway, below is the recipe. Sorry for the long diatribe!!!

Date brewed - 12/30/08
OG - 1.046
Batch Size - 6g
Water/Grain ratio - 1.3 qts/lb
Mash temp/time - 152/60 min
IBU - 18
SRM - 3

5 lbs. Organic Belgian Pils
6 lbs. Organic White Wheat Malt
.5 lbs Organic Flaked Wheat

1 oz. Organic Belgian Saaz (3.5% AA, 60 min)
1 oz. Organic Belgian Saaz (3.5% AA, 10 min)

1 oz. Organic crushed Coriander (5 min)
1 tbls. Organic Orange Marmalade (5 min)

Wyeast 3944 Belgian Witbier

The yeast took a day to actually get started, but then started with a bang and i had some blow off, but neglected to use the blow-off tube initially. This brew is also a big milestone for me. I've purchased a Co2 tank and regulator and I'm going to force carb this in a keg, then bottle using my blichman beer gun. the bottling will definitely take longer, but I'm just psyched to be able to force carb my beers now. The brew day went very well. It was freezing cold, so my brother and I (he came by to learn how to brew and drink some beers) spent a lot of time inside, only going outside to quickly add hops. One small boil over at the end occured because I left the lid on the kettle after the 10 min hop addition.

If anyone has an experience with either the Blichman beer gun or a counter pressure bottle filler, let me know. I'm still debating on which one I should buy.


No comments: