Friday, October 23, 2015

Pumpkin Lager

Pumpkin beer.  You probably have an opinion on it.  People either love it or hate it.  If you love it, you are either on the pumpkin pie spice crowd or actual pumpkin side.  It's a divisive style.  Every year I brew one, taste it and swear the style off.  Then the next year comes around and Fall hits and all of a sudden I cave and brew one.  Every.  Single. Year.  I've done a straight pumpkin beer with spices.  I then added graham crackers to the mash along with lactose and vanilla.  Last year I tried pumpkin pie spices to a stout.  They're all very average.  And for some reason I'm stupid enough to try it again.

This year I am of course changing up my recipe.  There's a guy on Reddit who has apparently honed in on a recipe over the past 10+ years that he describes as a cross between Punkin and Pumking.  He uses real pie pumpkins in the mash and then actually "dry pumpkins" after fermentation to give a gourd-y character.  I decided to basically copy his recipe, his spice mix, and his pie pumpkin process.  The only exception is I'm doing it as a lager instead of an ale.  I had to change something up, didnt I!?

Ichabod Crane

3 Gallons
74% efficiency

5 lb Maris Otter (83%)
0.5 lb Victory (8%) - I had to sub this because the homebrew shop didn't have Biscuit
0.5 lb Munich (8%)

0.4 oz Tettnang (60 min)

Wyeast 2124 (1 L starter, decanted, then 1.5 L starter)

OG 1.055 | FG 1.015 | IBU 12 | ABV 5.5%

Mashed at 156F to try to get some sweetness.  Boiled for 60 minutes.  2 mL lactic acid to get the mash pH to 5.35.

Pumpkin Spices/Process:

Baked 1 medium pie pumpkin (cubed in 1inch cubes) for 60 minutes at 375F (tossing every 15 mins).  Then I mixed some brown sugar (~1/4 c) with some water and spice mix (~1 tsp, see below) and put it back in the oven for 15 minutes until browned. This went into the mash.

2 tsp of spice mix (below) at 15 mins left in the boil.

When fermentation is done, bake another pie pumpkin in the oven, then candy on the stove with molasses and maple sugar, then add to secondary.

Spice Mix:

1 T cinnamon
1 t ginger
1 t nutmeg
1/4 t cloves

10/20/15: Brewed.  OG 1.052.  Put in fermentation chamber to cool down to 50F.

10/21/15: Pitched yeast.  Following the quick lager method that you can find online.  12 after yeast pitch, added O2 for 60 sec.

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