Monday, November 5, 2012

Graff - is it cider or is it beer?

I've tried my hand at making hard cider the past few years, but have never really hit on anything I've absolutely loved. So, when I read about "Brandon O's Graff" over at HBT I thought it would be cool to try out. This is something of a hybrid between cider and beer - I'm looking for a cider-like drink with more body and residual sweetness. Instead of using just malt extract and steeping some crystal malts like the original recipe, I decided I would brew up a small batch of amberish beer and add it to a couple gallons of local cider.

I had some leftover grain from my last batch (minus the crystal 120 and chocolate malt I added there), so I threw that into my small 2-gallon cooler that I used to use for doing partial mash batches, batch sparged, and collected about 2 gallons of combined runnings. I added some amber DME I had lying around and threw in some crystal hops and boiled for about 30 minutes. Once it was chilled I tossed it into the carboy and dumped in 2 gallons of fresh-pressed, pasteurized but preservative-free, cider. I had an old vial of Scottish ale yeast in the fridge and decided to forgo making a starter (since I didn't plan ahead like I should have) and just threw it in there. I was nervous about the viability of the culture, but fermentation has been chugging along nicely (hopefully it works ok).

I brewed this up while home with the kids during Hurricane Sandy and it was completely a spur of the moment endeavor. I rushed through everything, only paying attention to getting my mash temp somewhere in the 150s and calculating the hops so as not to exceed 5 IBUs. I have no idea what the original gravity ended up being, though I imagine it was close to 1.050. I'm excited about the potential this has, but really have no idea how it will end up.

Hurricane Graff
brewed on 10/29/12

Recipe Specifications
Batch Size: 3.5 gal
Estimated Color: 8.8 SRM
Estimated IBU: 5.0 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 %
OG: 1.050ish SG

Grist - this is a complete extrapolation based on some leftover pre-mixed and crushed grain from a previous recipe
1 lb 5 oz Pale Malt - 53.0%
4.0 oz Pilsner Malt - 10.1%
2.0 oz Crystal 60 - 5.1%
2.0 oz Munich I - 5.1%
2.0 oz White Wheat Malt - 5.1%
0.3 oz Roasted Barley - 0.1%
0.3 oz Acidulated - 0.1% (for mash pH)
8.0 oz Amber Dry Extract - 20.2%

14 g Crystal[2.80 %] - 30 min

2 gallons of apple cider

Edinburgh Scottish Ale (WLP028)

Mash Schedule
Single Infusion, 153ishºF, batch sparge


Andrew Albinger said...

How did it turn out?

Jim Lemire said...

Unfortunately, it became infected when I racked it to a carboy I had previously used for a Brett beer...I though I cleaned and sanitized it well enough...I was wrong.

I actually still have it sitting in the carboy, figuring I'll just wait and see where the Brett takes it.

Chris Frerich said...

It's been 2 years. Where did the Brett take it?

Jim Lemire said...

Would you believe that this batch is still sitting there in the back of my cellar untouched for two years? I guess I should probably check on it at some point...

Chris Frerich said...

Well do it already! Brett contamination --> It's either going to be AWESOME or you'll have to throw the fermenter away.

I've tried brewing graff a few times; haven't gotten the right body/acidity/hop balance yet.

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