Advice On A Christmas Beer

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brettule

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I'm looking to make from an extract a Christmas Beer which I can give to family. After doing some searching I think I have two directions to go in. First is a spiced approach, I guess akin to mulled wine flavours with the addition of Cloves, Ginger, Cinnamon, Orange Peel, Vanilla and Honey. The second direction I've seen for a Christmas Beer is along the lines of a Bavarian weizen with the addition of a little citrus peel and a tablespoon each of coriander and chamomile for depth.

I get the feeling that the first Spiced Beer would be a bit of a novelty and after one you'd probably give it a miss. The second style might suit our Christmas in summertime and make it a little more drinkable. What do you think? Does anyone have any expierence in this, tips, recipes even?!!!
 

brettprevans

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christmoose ale. in my signature. it rocks

you could drink this as a session beer. ive drunnk 4 longnecks in a row quite happily. im also ddoing an AG version soon
 

fcmcg

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I'm looking to make from an extract a Christmas Beer which I can give to family. After doing some searching I think I have two directions to go in. First is a spiced approach, I guess akin to mulled wine flavours with the addition of Cloves, Ginger, Cinnamon, Orange Peel, Vanilla and Honey. The second direction I've seen for a Christmas Beer is along the lines of a Bavarian weizen with the addition of a little citrus peel and a tablespoon each of coriander and chamomile for depth.

I get the feeling that the first Spiced Beer would be a bit of a novelty and after one you'd probably give it a miss. The second style might suit our Christmas in summertime and make it a little more drinkable. What do you think? Does anyone have any expierence in this, tips, recipes even?!!!
I did an extract brew with 2kg lme , and the additions of the spices you suggested ( use belgian orange peel if you can get it ) plus a kilo of honey.. and then used a belgian abby yeast to ferment it out . It was yum...like plum pudding in a bottle....not a "seesion" beer sure...but it did marry perfectly with plum pudding on xmas day...if you want , i'll try and find the recipe...
Cheers
Ferg
 

buttersd70

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A very easy drinking (in hot weather) beer is Bostons Ginger pilsner, which uses ginger, cloves, cinamon, lemon. Great tasting beer...Muckey has one fermenting atm, which is being done cool with an ale yeast...I was there on the brewday, and the smell was just sensational.
You could probably add a vew other spices into the mix if you wanted to.
Hang about, I'll find the link

edit: recipe is here

it's an AG beer, but it only uses a single base malt...so all you would have to do for an extract version is sub in either light or extra light lme /ldme to get the OG your after, and perhaps steep a bit of carapils, or light crystal to freshen it up and help with head retention, maybe 100-150g? ish.

there are also no hops at all in the recipe...so you could easily scale the OG up or down (within reason), and not even have to worry too much about rebalancing it.
 

ryanator

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My advice is to go easy with the spices. A few years ago I tried a dark ale with nutmeg and cinnamon but got a little heavy handed. It turned out horrible and had an incredibly dry aftertaste.
 

brettule

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christmoose ale. in my signature. it rocks

you could drink this as a session beer. ive drunnk 4 longnecks in a row quite happily. im also ddoing an AG version soon

Checked it out, looks good. Not too over the top but significantly Christmassy enough :)

What is the ideal fermentation temp for it? I've got thermostat control so I can set and forget.
 

brettprevans

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the yeast in the christmoose ale is T58 (belgian) so a warmer ferment say 20-24C is fine. it gets some nice flavours from the yeast.
 

brettule

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Can you just clear up youre recipe for me a little. Should it look like this?:

Use the juice & rind of 4 oranges.
2.5tsp nutmeg.
1.5 tsp cloves.
1tsp mixed spice.
6 cardamon pods crushed.
2 sticks + 1tsp cinnamon.
300g Macadamia Honey Steeped grains. Is this something you can buy from a brewshop?

@45 etc is that minutes? Is the temp to maintain all at boil point?
Honey & spices in separate pot @45. 10g Hersbrucker 20g [email protected] 1kg DME @30. 2kg LME 25g Hersbrucker 20g Hallertau @15. Spices @ end.

Strain it all before it goes in the fermentor or not? I guess the cinnamon sticks you leave in the fermentor at least?

I was worried the orange would dominate this as I hadn't originally planned to put in the juice as well. They don't but I would recommend only putting in half the juice personally. This has been variously described as 'fig newton beer', 'pillow biscuit beer' and 'christmas pudding beer' so I think you get the picture as to what to expect aroma wise particularly.

I plan to bulk prime, any thoughts on how much dextrose would be ideal for correct carbonation level?
 

brettprevans

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yup the recipe above looks right.

re: @45. yes that's 45min.
I would actually not boil the spices and honey 2nd time around. just simmer them. and only use some of the honey. honey flavours and aromas are driven off when heated.

yeah just strain it all at the end and rinse to get the yummy spices goodness off them. you could leave all the spices in the fermentor for extra taste. its personal preferance. I would do that next time but i want more spice.

I didnt end up using macadamia honey. i used generic supermarket honey. i think it was a blossom type. blossom is the go if you can get it. nice floral aromas.

Suprisingly the orange desnt dominate. the clives dominate more early on then mellow out.

Not sure re bulk priming rate. Search for bulk prime and you'll find the threads with links to bulk priming calulator. I went for 1.5 carb drops from memory. again personal preferance.
 

bconnery

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Carb about what you generally prefer to for a pale ale style beer.
I did 150g dextrose for a 23L batch in the original.
 

brettule

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What's the volume of water I boil all the hops in CityMorgue2?
 

brettprevans

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dont boil the hops in plain water. use some malt extract or the liquor from your steeped grains. you get a better utilisation of the hops. Volume depends on your capacity. I usually use about 3-5L. But thats got the wort from my steeped grain and some malt extract in it.

it doesnt really matter in th quantities your talking about. if you only have an 6L pot, then do 2-3L. no big issue there mate
 

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