Beer Recipe: “Eureka” Tripel

This is my first brew I put to use the information I learned from Brew like a Monk and posted about earlier, so named for my various “eureka!” moments while reading.  Its a style I love and have been wanting to brew since I started, but always got pushed off for reasons unknown.

Batch Size: 5 gal/ 18.9 L

12 lb/ 5.44 kg   German pilsner malt (Best Malz)
2.5lb/ 1.13 kg    Sucrose
1 lb/ 0.45 kg     2-row pale brewer’s malt (Briess)

0.7 oz/ 21 g    Horizon, 12%, 60 min, 24.2 IBU
1.75 oz/ 50 g  Whitbread goldings, 7.1%, 10 min, 12.1 IBU
Total IBU:       36.3 (Tinseth)

3+1L starter   WLP575 Belgian blend
(1 vial in 3 L starter, decanted, then 1 L wort at start of brew day)

1 tsp                 Hydrated irish moss (10 min)
1/2 tsp             Wyeast nutrient

Target CO2:     2.9 vol

OG:                 1.091 (70% mash eff; target 1.085, 64%)
FG:                  1.009 (89% apparent atten.)
ABV:                10.6% after conditioning

Mash temp:          149F/ 65C (target 147F/ 63.9C)
Mash thickness:   1.33 qt/lb/ 2.77 L/kg
Single infusion mash, single (batch) sparge
Boil time:              90 min

Calculated Profile:

Calcium 39.2 Sulfate 87.1 Hardness 98
Magnesium 0.1 Chloride 68.9 Alkalinity -46
Sodium 73.8 Bicarbonate -55.3 RA -74

I was pretty happy with this water profile, save for the sodium content, which is just how my water is served up.  I adjusted the sulfate to chloride ratio for a balanced beer, and drove down the RA with some lactic acid to get the mash pH down in the absence of any dark malts and lack of calcium in the mash.  I added the sparge calcium additions directly to the kettle instead of the sparge water.  This seems to help bring up the calcium level in the wort and ensure a good boil pH and help with yeast health and flocculation.  I have done kettle calcium additions for a few batches now, and between that and my new O2 system, the yeast seem much more willing to floc out.   (See my water treatment post here.)

Fermentation Temperature: 67F/ 19.4C ambient; pitched at 65F/ 18.3C; let free-warm to 76F/ 24.4C by the time the ferment taper off; turned on lamp to warm to 78F/ 25.6C to finish the ferment out

Tasting Notes:

belgian tripel

Still needs some time to bottle condition…

Appearance: pale to medium yellow, no head- definitely not anywhere near fully carbonated yet

Aroma: light Belgian spice

Taste: Belgian spice, though little to no fruityness (just a hint in the far aftertaste); light alcoholic finish; good acidity- not flabby and dull (but no lactic/ acetic, etc taste), will improve further with carbonic acidity; some flavor I can’t quite put my finger on, likely from the suspect (dry, brown, and stale) 10 min hops from the unopened new(?) package- not unpleasant but should not be there; no flavors are overwhelming or otherwise out of balance- just enough bittering to balance, but not enough to lend hop character

Mouthfeel: lightly silky and surprisingly substantial for an 89% attenuation; would benefit from more bite and lift from carbonation

Overall: I am very happy with this beer, though it still requires much more time to condition and carbonate. It goes down deceptively smooth for being such a (young) monster. It’s a bit darker than I expected it to be, though this is at least partially due to yeast still in suspension. This is something I would make again without hesitation, with no change but to ensure fresh hops, and perhaps to drop the OG down a bit closer to where I wanted it in the first place.  I might also consider starting the fermentation a touch warmer, but probably not.

– Dennis,
Life, Fermented


About Dennis
Home brewer, home chef, garage tinkerer. Author of Life Fermented blog.

2 Responses to Beer Recipe: “Eureka” Tripel

  1. would you mind if I retweet this?

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