Belgian Vienna Red Ale

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Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby bwarbiany on Mon Jan 09, 2012 4:57 pm

Some of you guys have seen that I've spent quite some time trying to work on a Belgian session beer. The intent was to be light, ~4.5%, inoffensive to most "non-craft" drinkers but interesting enough for me. Very rarely has it worked out.

So I decided to go for a Belgian red ale instead, using Vienna as the base malt. Let me know what you think -- this recipe is still a work in progress, so your critiques are more than welcome.

Recipe Specifications
--------------------------
Batch Size (fermenter): 10.50 gal
Estimated OG: 1.053 SG
Estimated Color: 16.8 SRM
Estimated IBU: 26.2 IBUs

Ingredients:
------------
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
18.00 lb Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) Grain 1 87.8 %
2.00 lb Caravienne Malt (22.0 SRM) Grain 2 9.8 %
0.50 lb Black (Patent) Malt (500.0 SRM) Grain 3 2.4 %
3.00 oz Saaz [4.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min Hop 4 23.2 IBUs
1.00 Items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins) Fining 5 -
2.00 oz Saaz [4.00 %] - Boil 5.0 min Hop 6 3.1 IBUs
2.0 pkg SafBrew Specialty Ale (DCL/Fermentis #T- Yeast 7 -

Mash: 155 degrees for 60 minutes.
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby lexuschris on Mon Jan 09, 2012 6:54 pm

Love the idea! Sounds good to me!

Are you using SafBrew S-33? or T-58?

:cheers:
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"A woman drove me to drink, and I hadn't even the courtesy to thank her." – W.C. Fields
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby bwarbiany on Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:02 pm

lexuschris wrote:Are you using SafBrew S-33? or T-58?


Thinking T-58. Never used it before, so if anyone has *any* experience, let me know. I can swap that out for liquid if necessary as well...
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby lexuschris on Mon Jan 09, 2012 11:12 pm

Never used it, but found this blog posting on it. Check out the reader comments too.. they share some more expereiences with T-58.
:beer: LexusChris
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby brianc on Tue Jan 10, 2012 1:01 am

I've used T-58 quite a bit. As mentioned in the link Chris posted, it gets pretty peppery and might be a bit much for this beer. I would also get lots of bubble gum at first, but after conditioning a while it would dissipate. If you are wanting to stick to dry, I think S-33 would be a better choice.
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby brahn on Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:54 am

I've used it and agree with what brianc said. It worked great in a light rye beer, but I don't know about this beer. My experience with S-33 has been mixed, once pretty belgian-y and once pretty bland and meh. I'd probably go with liquid.
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby bwarbiany on Tue Jan 10, 2012 12:20 pm

Thanks guys... Given that I'm making 10 gallons, those reviews are enough to warn me off of using it for this.
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby BrewMasterBrad on Tue Jan 10, 2012 12:33 pm

Looks and sounds like a good beer. As a precaution, you might want to swap a pound of the Vienna for a pound of Pilsner malt just to make sure you have enough diastatic power to convert everything. I know Vienna is supposed to be able to convert itself, but why take a chance? It's cheap insurance.
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby bwarbiany on Tue Jan 10, 2012 2:28 pm

BrewMasterBrad wrote:Looks and sounds like a good beer. As a precaution, you might want to swap a pound of the Vienna for a pound of Pilsner malt just to make sure you have enough diastatic power to convert everything. I know Vienna is supposed to be able to convert itself, but why take a chance? It's cheap insurance.


That's a good point. I happen to have Belgian pils on hand anyway, so if I swap out even slightly more (2-3#) it probably won't make a very strong change to the flavor. Thanks.
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Re: Belgian Vienna Red Ale

Postby bwarbiany on Wed Jan 11, 2012 11:30 am

I made the below changes:

1) Increased recipe to 15 gallons (a coworker is taking 5 to ferment himself).
2) Added some pilsner.
3) Changed bittering to Magnum (purely to be sure I had enough on hand for the higher volume).
4) Swapped out T-58 for another highly-attenuative Belgian yeast (should help chew through the Vienna & the 155 deg mash temp).
5) Dropped target OG to 1.049 in anticipation of higher attenuation, to still keep it sessionable.

Code: Select all
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
21.00 lb Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) Grain 1 75.7 %
3.00 lb Caravienne Malt (22.0 SRM) Grain 2 10.8 %
3.00 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Bel (2.0 SRM) Grain 3 10.8 %
0.75 lb Black (Patent) Malt (500.0 SRM) Grain 4 2.7 %
2.25 oz Magnum [8.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min Hop 5 23.8 IBUs
2.00 Items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 mins) Fining 6 -
4.00 oz Saaz [4.00 %] - Boil 5.0 min Hop 7 4.2 IBUs
1.0 pkg Belgian Yeast 8 -
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