James Squire Amber Ale

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I am going to put another kit down before I venture into partial and then ag, and this time I wanna try for a James Squire Amber Ale Clone.

I know I ask alot of questions :p but I wanna get a good technique down for my first few brews, so that I can only improve on it, not step backwards :), so I appreciate your patience.

Ok, so the ingredients I am using are:

1.5kg Muntons Premium Blonde
1.5kg Morgans Unhopped Amber Malt Extract
250g Maltodextrin
1 Brew Bag Cluster Finishing Hops
Safale Yeast S-04

Expected SG 1050
Expected FG 1016

Ok so my enquiry:

Is there any special brewing methods I should use for this setup?
Should I allow for a rest?
Should I CC?
Is my recipe going to be fairly decent?


Hi Beer

I'll have a crack at some advice, but there are many ways of getting a good result and many different opinions.

I'd skip the maltodexrin, as there is plenty of malt already in your recipe and I don't really like thick beers that much anyway.

The decision you need to make with the hops (I assume the bag is about 20g) is how much bitterness vs flavour vs aroma you want from them. If you give them a minute or 5 in boiling water, you will get mainly aroma, whereas boiling or soaking them in boiling water for about 15 minutes will give you some extra flavour and bitterness in your brew.

Are you thinking of boiling it all together (the can & the extract) or just disolving it with boiling water in the fermenter?

Hope this helps.
Sorry I should have been more accurate.

The hops will have an 8 min boil soak and the bag will be in the fermenter till raking, when I will remove it.

The maltodextrin was to give it an extra boost, with out the aid of a dextrose because as you say its got a shite load of malt already and doesn't need a sugar base :)

The cans will be straight to the ferment with boiling water... would I be better to stove boil them first?


I am with WillM on this one.... scrap the malto dextrin

I would do a boil as big as you can (up to 6 or 8 lires if possible) with the unhopped extract and the hops - and I would split the bag, say 10g for 60mins, and the other 10 at 10 mins. Use this hot liquid to thoroughly dissolve your kit in the fermenter. Top up with cold water (out of the fridge) to get your 20-odd litres, and if the temp is right, pitch and away you go.

Dont boil the cans...

I think u need more hops...25gms with a little of the amber malt for a 30min boil - approx 5ltrs min water.
Through in 15gms for the last 2mins.

Primary for 10days - rack to secondary - taste beer.
u can dry hop -25gms - if u feel u want more hop aroma/flavour - if not leave in secondary for 2 weeks and in the fridge for 3 days prior to bottling.
SO4 is a good neutral yeast - if u want a bit more body go Windsor Ale - but i think London Ale - dry or liquid would go well with this.

Hope this helps
Leave out the maltodextrin...

I have another 25g cluster... but its about 2 years old... its been kept cool and in the dark and in the packet.. will it still be ok? if not I can buy some more tomorrow.

So I guess I will save the maltodextrin for another batch.. thx for that info.

Tomorrow or sunday is brew day, so any more advice is always welcome.


I would also use Willamette hops - this is what they use in JSAA. I think this will make quite a bit of difference too. Any of the beers I have made with Willamette (brown ale and amber ale) seem to have a touch of that JSAA flavour about them.
Well I'm back from bottling a cold lager, and kicking off a new Pils, so after a few samples, here's another thought.

The part of brewing I dislike the most is bottling (ok, I'll get a keg one day), the 2nd least likeable part is the boil. So while doing a boil is defintely the right answer, it sort of beats the purpose of having a can. I'd just add the extract and the can to the fermenter with a few litres of boiling water, after soaking the hops in the boiling water for 10 mins. I know it's lazy, and the boil is a safer option, but it seems to work ok as long as everything is sanitized.

If I have to do a boil, I might as well get out all the gear and do a mash, whereas I can throw a modified can beer together in 15 mins.

Thanks for the advice on the JS hops. Do you know if the new Golden Ale uses Willimette as well?
As far as I know, the Golden Ale uses Amarillo. I could stand to be corrected, as I havent tried it (heard it wasnt that flash), but I read somewhere that it is Amarillo. At least for the finishing hops anyway.
All the best
Yeah, Golden Ale is Amarillo. And I agree, its most likely just the finishing side of things - say 1 gram per litre at 10mins and another gram per litre at flameout (I would guess POR for bittering, as appears to be the case for the rest of their beers). That might be a bit more than they use though because, although Goldern Ale has quite a prominent hop flavour/aroma, Amarillo seems to cut through quite a bit. Maybe even 1 gram a litre shared across flavour and aroma additions would do the trick.

Willamette is a great hop variety for amber ales and brown ales, porters too for that matter. I have never tried it with lighter ales, but I think I would prefer cascade/amarillo or even some german hops for that style.

Boiling 20g of Willamette for 5-10mins would probably do the trick for a JSAA style beer.
Thanks guys, I'll buy some Amarillo and have a play.
I was going to start a new post but this seems right up my alley.

I'm thinking of brewing the JSAA...

here's what i have

- Morgans Royal Oak Amber Ale Can
- Morgans Caramalt 1 kg
- Williamette Hops (i'm thinking 15g)

Is this enough malt/sugar? is there any suggestions to what i can add?


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