Here we are with wedding batch number two. This beer is practically identical to the California Common I brewed a couple months ago. I wanted something malty, flavorful, while still being very drinkable. Not too sweet, not too bitter, and not too blah. This Common struck all the right chords.
Recipe-wise, I made very few changes from the previous batch. I replaced half of the Northern Brewer hops with a Centennial, and the WLP001 with WLP090. Other than that, same beer. This batch was brewed right on the coat-tails of the last wedding batch to be sure they would have plenty of time to condition before the 28th.
This was a pretty simple brew day. No whirlpool hops, middle of the road gravity, and no extended mash. It’s still brutally hot and humid in Phoenix, but that’s nothing new. I did a 60min mash followed by a 60min boil, and begun cooling the wort immediately after flameout. I knocked it out into the fermenters at 64F before blasting with O2, and pitching a 3L starter of yeast (half in each FV).
ABV: 5.4 %
4oz Pale Chocolate
Mash @ 152*
1oz Apollo @ 60
1oz ea Centennial/Northern Brewer @ 20
1oz ea Centennial/Northern Brewer @ 0
WLP090 -San Diego Super Yeast
I let the temperature ride up as fermentation slowed down, and then gave the beer a few extra days at 68F to finish up before kegging. Finally I fined with gelatin and hit the kegs with CO2. This beer had a whole month to do it’s thing before the wedding, and it showed. I’m a big fan of giving non-hoppy beers a little time to condition at cold temps.
The appearance is a beautiful deep amber with a fluffy white head. The aroma is very malt with a little caramel malt. No real hop aroma to speak of. Flavor is toasted malts, some sweetness from the crystal, and a bit of balancing bitterness. The Centennial added a tiny bit of floral hop flavor, but only a hop-head would pick it out. The finish is crisp, and I’d say the mouthfeel is medium-light. All-in-all, it turned out to be an excellent beer. It checked all the ‘boxes’ for what I think most people identify with craft beer, and it went over really well at the wedding. The keg was kicked by the end of the night. The only beer that went faster was the IPA, but we’ll get to that one in a couple of days. =)