This has turned out to be a pleasant batch. Worthwhile posting the recipe if anyone were interested in having a go at a Saison, but not having done one before (process sheet and calculations courtesy of BeerSmith) based on my own tinkered recipe for a Belgian Saison from a number of sources (Brewing Classic Styles getting a particular mention):
Recipe: Honey Saison TYPE: All Grain
SRM: 10.2 EBC SRM RANGE: 9.8-27.6 EBC
IBU: 27.0 IBUs Tinseth IBU RANGE: 20.0-35.0 IBUs
OG: 1.076 SG OG RANGE: 1.048-1.065 SG
FG: 1.012 SG FG RANGE: 1.002-1.012 SG
BU:GU: 0.357 Calories: 632.2 kcal/l Est ABV: 8.4 %
EE%: 73.00 % Batch: 11.02 l Boil: 17.72 l BT: 90 Mins
Total Grain Weight: 3.59 kg Total Hops: 61.00 g oz.
—MASH/STEEP PROCESS——MASH PH:5.20 ——
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
2.45 kg Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (3.9 EBC) Grain 1 68.3 %
0.41 kg Wheat Malt, Bel (3.9 EBC) Grain 2 11.4 %
0.39 kg Munich Malt (17.7 EBC) Grain 3 10.8 %
Name Description Step Temperature Step Time
Saccharification Add 15 l of water at 67.3 64.4 C 90 min
Mash Out Heat to 75.6 C over 7 min 75.6 C 10 min
Remove grains. Light sparge with 4 ltr of water at 76 C, and prepare to boil wort
Est Pre_Boil Gravity: 1.049 SG Est OG: 1.076 SG
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
39.00 g Hallertauer Hersbrucker [2.00 %] – Boil Hop 4 14.0 IBUs
22.00 g Saaz [3.30 %] – Boil 60.0 min Hop 5 13.0 IBUs
0.12 tsp Irish Moss (Boil 10.0 mins) Fining 6 –
Yeast Lallemande – Belle Saison: 1 Pack (rehydrated)
Primary Start: 15 Aug 2015 – 7.00 Days at 24 C
Style Carb Range: 2.30-2.90 Vols
Bottling Date: 25 Aug 2015 with 1 Coopers Carbonation Drop per (small) bottle
Crickey!!! This fermented fast. What with the weather and adding a brew belt (note to self – bad brewer! not needed! be more patient!) this reached a top temp of 26 C at some points, and fermented really fast. 5 days was all it took to get to a FG of 1010. At bottling 10 days after fermentation started, it was down to 1008! Definitely the lowest FG I have ever achieved. The Belle Saison dry yeast had no difficulties at all, and no stuck fermentation.
After putting into small bottles with 1 carbonation drop each, and left in a warmish spot for a further 5 days this is shaping up really well! Spicy, not too phenolic and malty rather than hoppy. You can taste the high alcohol content, but it is not spirit like. Overall it is refreshingly dry – but strong! 7.4% ABV or thereabouts! Not much of a honey flavour (in hindsight I remember having a great honey beer in Belgium called Barbar which I would love to emulate) so I think the recipe could take more honey.
In hindsight I would change out a slightly cooler fermentation and add more honey. Other than that, great balance of malt to hops, spicy Belgian flavours and not too “farmyardy”. Not a Saison du Pont clone (which I was lucky enough to try within the last 3 months), but definitely a style that warrants a repeat brew another time.