I received my homebrew kit in February and have now produced two different beers. Pretentious Hopster isn’t quite ready yet to be consumed yet, so as I wait with great anticipation, I have begun to start thinking about what I want to brew next. I tossed around a few different ideas at first. I wanted to create something I could drink over the summer and enjoy; however, I wanted to start heading into a style I could play with a little bit more. Summery beers are somewhat easier to play with, but there are specific flavors you really don’t want to consume during those warm summer months. I thought of doing a wheat beer, but my friend John just created a Hefe that he wasn’t quite happy about, and we tend to share our creations so it’s like I’ve also brewed it. So, heading in a different direction, I decided I would brew something Belgian. I love Belgian beer, and I almost fear brewing something that doesn’t live up to the amazing beers I’ve had from other breweries. Of course I don’t expect to be better than trappist monks who have 100’s of yeas of tradition, but I want to brew something I’m proud of. Ultimately I landed on the idea of a saison. I’ve had quite a few of them lately, and I have enjoyed a lot of them quite a bit. Plus, I get the feeling I can really play with the flavors.
I have a clone recipe, and I’ve found a few different recipe ideas online that I may try and use as the backbone of my creation, but I want to a little more free with my recipe this time. The amber I made was a pre-made kit, and the IPA was a recipe. So, this time, I want to take a recipe and make a few changes and alterations to really have something that I can call my own. Perhaps something I make a yearly tradition. I think I’ve found a recipe to use as a base for my beer, but I want to see if anyone has any suggestions on what I should be using in my ingredients.
Ultimately I’ve decided to try to brew what I will be calling an Asian Farmhouse Saison. I thought it would be fun to put a little spin on the typical saison with this one. So I have some ideas with a lot of the back half of the boil, but I’m really most confused with what steeping grains I’ll use. The recipe I found as a base tells me to use 8oz Flaked Oats, 8oz Vienna Malt, and 4 oz Cara Red. Looking these different grains up, they seem like they will be fine for what I’m doing, but I’m not really 100% sure on that. Would any of you homebrewers change anything about those steeping grains? Keep in mind I’m doing extract. The malts are much simpler when it comes to extract brewing. It has me using 4 lbs DME Golden Light (Briess) and 2 lbs LME Wheat Bavarian (Briess). That definitely seems fine, but I’ll once again listen to any suggestions out there.
A lot of the fun should be coming in the hops and spices I intend to use. Like I said, I want to try to make an Asian Farmhouse Saison, so I’m going to utilize Sorachi Ace hops. I know Brooklyn makes a Sorachi Saison, so I’m trying to not really make something too close to theirs. I really want to have a hop that can complement my Asian hops. Once again I’m looking for suggestions, but based off the research I did, I think I will look to use Citra hops. Does anyone else have any ideas on a good hop that can compliment Sorachi Ace hops? Finally the spices that I’m looking to use are more Asian in nature. Right now I’ve definitely settled on using candied ginger, but I don’t know if there is a good one to put with it. I was thinking of using some orange in there as well, but I would like to use some other Asian spice with it. I’m not great with spices, but is there a spice out there that would compliment the rest of these flavors really well? I want to have flavors that all work together.
Pretentious Hopster is the beer that I like to drink, but this beer will be my true baby. I want to really piece it together with some of my own concepts, so I can really call this one my beer. I am definitely looking for some help, so if you have any thoughts on some good things to include, please let me know. I am excited for this next one!