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Style of the Week: Irish Red Ale

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October 10, 2014 by fhsteinbart


Smithwicks Red Ale

Fond memories are made in your local Pub!

While stationed in the UK, I grew fond of the local beers there. One I found particularly tasty was Smithwick’s Irish Red Ale. It was a nicely hoppy yet dry beer, and with only 5% Abv, and 25 IBU’s, it was a great beer to quaff by the pint load. It seems like we here in the USA like our beers more full on the palate, rather than drier like most well made European beers. While I try to encourage people to make drier beers, its only because they are more drinkable, and allow you to drink more and taste more different beers. Below is a recipe of mine that tries to mimic that dry roasty toasty hop flavored beer that I remember so well.

Extract version:

OG: 1.054 TG: 1.012

6 lbs. Light DME

5 oz. Light Roast Barley

5 oz. Crystal/Caramel 80L

5 oz. Honey Malt

1 oz. Magnum hops for 60~90 minutes

2 oz. Golding’s hops for 20 minutes

1 Whirlfloc Tablet or ½ tsp. Irish Moss at last 15 minutes

2 oz. Willamette hops at 7 minutes

¾ gm. Burton Water Salts per gallon (~3.75 gms. or 1 level tsp.)

Wyeast 1084, WLP004, or S-04 yeast

Procedure:

  • Heat 2-5 gallons of water to 165°F.
  • Turn off heat and add malt extract, stirring until fully dissolved.
  • Return to Heat, bring to boil for 10~15 min. then add bittering hops.
  • At 20 minutes before end of boil, add the flavor hops
  • At 15 minutes before end of boil, add Whirlfloc tablet or Irish moss.
  • At 7 minutes before end of boil, add the aroma hops.
  • At knockout (0 minutes), turn off the heat, then cool the mixture by placing kettle in an ice bath or use a wort chiller.
  • Add the mixture to the fermenter, removing the hops, and bring total volume to 5 gallons using distilled, bottled, or filtered tap water.
  • Aerate unfermented wort (shaking works well).
  • Pitch yeast and ferment at 65°F to 69°F. for up to two weeks, allowing to age an additional two weeks before packaging up as usual.

All Grain version:

OG: 1.054 TG: 1.012

9 lbs. Gambrinus 2-Row Pale Ale Malt

5 oz. Light Roast Barley

5 oz. Crystal/Caramel 80L

5 oz. Honey Malt

1 oz. Magnum hops for 60~90 minutes

2 oz. Golding’s hops for 20 minutes

1 Whirlfloc Tablet or ½ tsp. Irish Moss at last 15 minutes

2 oz. Willamette hops at 7 minutes

¾ gm. Burton Water Salts per gallon (~3.75 gms. or 1 level tsp.)

Wyeast 1084, WLP004, or S-04 yeast

Procedure:

  • Infusion mash at 148°F for 90 min.
  • Sparge until 6~6½ gal wort has been obtained.
  • Add the Burton Water Salts after the boil commences.
  • Boil for 1 to 1½ hours.
  • Then add the bittering hops after 15 minutes boiling and continue to boil for 60 more minutes.
  • Add the flavor hops at 20 minutes remaining.
  • Add Whirlfloc or Irish Moss at last 15 minutes.
  • Add the aroma hops at 7 minutes remaining to the boil.
  • Gravity may vary depending on system efficiency, so adjust accordingly.

Package up as usual; bottled versions should use 112 gms. corn sugar (approx. ¾ cup), or kegged to 20 psig, and allow two weeks to come into condition. Serve at 45~50°F in a 20 oz. Imperial Pint glass, share and enjoy!

 

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