Sonnet

Blondie with no name

A patron of the Homebrew Shop I am currently employed at has asked for some assistance in developing a few recipes for a brewery he is hopeful to open up in the next year or so. I agreed to help him out with some recipe formulation and some R&D. As if I needed any more excuse to brew.
This batch, a simple blonde ale (light hybrid, not Belgian) is the first recipe I have come up with. There is nothing off-the-wall about this one, as I am just looking for a solid, light-drinking beer, that hits on all the important aspects of a solid beer (maltiness, hop profile, clarity, etc...).

Recipe Specifications

--------------------------
Boil Size: 6.73 gal
Post Boil Volume: 5.98 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.25 gal   
Bottling Volume: 5.00 gal
Estimated OG: 1.046 SG
Estimated Color: 4.3 SRM
Estimated IBU: 23.2 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 70.00 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Ingredients:
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Amt                   Name                                     Type          #        %/IBU         
7 lbs 8.8 oz          Brewer's Malt, 2-Row, Premium (Great Wes Grain         1        80.0 %        
15.1 oz               Barley, Flaked (Briess) (1.7 SRM)        Grain         2        10.0 %        
7.6 oz                Aromatic Malt (Briess) (20.0 SRM)        Grain         3        5.0 %         
7.6 oz                Carapils (Briess) (1.5 SRM)              Grain         4        5.0 %         
0.50 oz               Palisade [7.50 %] - First Wort 60.0 min  Hop           5        15.0 IBUs     
1.00 oz               Sonnet [3.75 %] - Boil 20.0 min          Hop           6        8.2 IBUs      
2.00 oz               Sonnet [3.75 %] - Boil 0.0 min           Hop           7        0.0 IBUs      
1.0 pkg               Irish Ale Yeast (White Labs #WLP004)     Yeast         8        -             


Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Light Body, No Mash Out
Total Grain Weight: 9 lbs 7.0 oz
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Name              Description                                Step Temperat Step Time     
Mash In           Add 11.00 qt of water at 175.4 F           153.0 F       60 min        
Mash Out          Add 6.00 qt of water at 200.9 F            168.0 F       15 min        

Sparge: Batch sparge with 4.11 gal water at 170.0 F


A pretty basic and straightforward grist for this one. 2-row as the base, 10% Flaked Barley for some body and head retention. I also threw in 5% Aromatic to increase the maltiness of this beer, as the focus with blondes should be on the malty side, as opposed to being intensely hoppy. In addition, 5% carapils for some dextrins. The grist is actually based on a beer I brewed last year, which was meant to showcase a newer hop variety at the time, Belma. While the hop characteristics were lost overall in that batch, the beer in general turned out great. 
This go-around I decided to use Palisade for bittering. I don't have a good reason for this, only that it is a hop very rarely used by homebrewers in this area, and I think it deserves a shot. I am also using a newer hope variety for the flavor and aroma. Sonnet, which is bred from Saaz, and exhibits a lot of Goldings characteristics. Sonnet was a hop I used in the Le Fou, and really like what it had to contribute to the aroma of that particular beer. 
As for the yeast, I really like WLP004 Irish Ale for a more neutral yeast character. In my opinion, it lends a nice balance between the malt and the hops.

I plan to leave in primary for ten days, cold crash, and the keg this one up. 

Brewed on May 17, 2014: 

Mash efficiency was a little better than anticipated: 75% rather than 70% I calculated for. So, original gravity came in a few points higher, 1.051 rather than 1.046. Not the biggest difference, but noteworthy. 
Collected 5.25 gallons of wort, chilled to 69F, and placed in fermentation chamber, which is set to 64F

 

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