After some speculation on trying a no hop sour ale, I’ve decided to give this no boil sour brown ale a go.

The reason I’m trying this is that so many sour ale recipes use minuscule amounts of hops. On top of that, they age for a year or more, so those .25oz of hops spread across 5 gallons that were there are long gone by serving time.

Sour Brown Ale

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Process

I mashed all my grains as normal and instead of beginning the boil, racked straight into the sanitized fermenter.

2 Days

The yeast started up and is off. I’ll check the gravity again later on.

Low gravity on the sour brown ale30 Days

The gravity is down to 1.002. The gravity sample tasted kind of “grainy”. Hoping this mellows out. It may be because the particulates from the mash have stayed in suspension, or because the chocolate malt I used was a little older.

1.5 Months

The beer has dropped quite clear in this time. The grainy taste is fading which is very relieving.

2 Months

Added a handful of medium toast oak chips for the bugs to chew on. It’s time for the long haul.

6 Months

Now half way along. Most of any sediment has dropped out. I can tell the color is going to be an amazing red. I’ll update later in the month with a tasting and photo update. Soon enough she’ll be in bottles, and aging from there.

sour brown ale vivid pellicle9 Months

This now has a vivid pellicle. This has been under airlock and in primary for nine months. Next month I’ll move this to bottle for final conditioning. Hopefully it’s ready for drinking at the 1 year point.

12 Months

What a year it’s been. Refilling the airlock, letting it sit. It’s time for a taste test which I will do tonight to celebrate coming back to blogspot.

14 Months

Took a sample of the beer for tasting. It is very sour forward, as expected. Then on the finish there is a noticeable malty finish. Overall this was a pretty big success. I’ll bottle half of this, then use the other half for sour balance blending in other recipes.

16 Months

I really need to bottle this. Unfortunately (but due to good news), I’ll be brewing for someone’s wedding and it will use all my bottles, so I wont’ have enough to bottle this just yet. Here it is in a taster. Can’t wait until it’s carbed up.

no boil sour brown ale recipe in taster

20 Months

My bottle stock is restored for the most part, so I went ahead and bottled this. I added red Star Montrachet yeast the day before bottling as I wasn’t counting on the bulk of yeast that has been sitting for almost two years being ready to condition a batch. I’m hoping 6 weeks is enough and I can give out some bottles for Christmas.

22 Months

It’s done! Very sour forward with a fruity funky nose. No brett character in the actual taste of the beer, but the aroma suggests otherwise. It’s bright acidity with some brown ale malt notes after the sour dissipates. I’m very happy with how the sour brown ale turned out. The real challenge is to make it last until my next sour is done so I don’t run out.

 

finished sour brown ale

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