Given the failure of the 0IBU beer, I need something to drink! It’s also becoming tiring digging through little bags of hops in my freezer when I dip in looking for the good stuff. Why not make a big old mish-mash and see where it goes.
Let’s first talk about these new Ariana hops from Hopmeister. I picked these up from Farmhouse brew supply about a month ago. Farmhouse had the following to say about Ariana. AA__10.2%. Depending upon the style of beer brewed and timing of the addition of the hops, brewers have noticed grapefruit, gooseberry, citrus and vanilla flavors. Ariana is said to be ideal for dry hopping, when it imparts its most intense fruity flavors. Use in: Big American Ales, IPA, Pale ales, Ambers.
Wow, this sounds remarkably like Nelson, but with some vanilla in the mix. I’m not a big fan of Nelson, but it sure is complex. Having Nelson in this beer, plus this, should make for some outstanding tasting notes. This time around, I’m going to focus on that dry, cool grape, green fruit, gooseberry thing. Maybe a dry wine inspiration? Why not. Let’s keep it simple and focus on the hops the best way I know how.
Taking what I’ve learned from my Green clone attempt, I feel that the hop timing and amounts are pretty solid and I’d like to stick to it. We will bitter with warrior. Nelson and Simcoe will be the big proponent of the whirlpool with a little bit of Ariana and Warrior for complexity. The dry hop will be the inverse; primarily Ariana and El Dorado with a touch of Simcoe and Nelson.
An uneventful brew day carries on. I adjusted some equipment in BeerSmith to see if it helps with my awful efficiency. Perhaps the water levels are wonky? (This has been since resolved. It was because of my 5 gallon mash tun. I upgraded to a 10 gal and can gather the majority of my wort in first runnings as opposed to before where half of my wort would be first runnings and half would be my sparge runnings)
Pale Two Row
Fawcett Oat Malt
WLP 007 – Dry English Ale
I mashed at 152F for 60 minutes followed by my usual 20 minute batch sparge at 168F. The sparge came in a little low this time. I missed by 4 degrees. In effort to avoid messing with my water amounts, I left it as it.
The whirlpool went on for 30 minutes at 180F allowing the temperature to fall gradually. The aroma coming off the kettle is DANK VANILLA. How interesting is this!
The beer fermented with WLP 007 using a starter for 14 days before being kegged and cold crashed. I carbonated at 25 PSI for a few days and then dropped down to serving temperature before taking my first pour.
The head did not stick around long. Perhaps that’s from the gratuitous amounts of hops? After all, we’re talking about 3.75oz/gallon here. I did not keg hop this beer. The only hop addition was on day 3 of fermentation. It doesn’t have a very big nose but it’s all gooseberry. The body is medium. The color is quite darker than the software had predicted.
This beer hits the palate hard. It’s much bitterer than I had anticipated. It’s a sharp bitter unlike a resinous bitter. The taste is very dry. I don’t get juicy on this at all, but there is some fruit. I’m thinking under ripe berries with maybe a splash of green pepper. The finish is reminiscent of chardonnay – dry white wine in cool weather. I’ve read that El Dorado imparts a bit of a candy taste on the back end. It plays well with the Nelson and Ariana on a wine like level. The Simcoe doesn’t come through. I’ve made it through half the glass and can’t really put my finger on it. It’s VERY unique and complex.
This beer isn’t for me, but it may be for some that are into the Nelson thing. I have a feeling lots of this one will be given away. As I said earlier, I’m not a big fan of Nelson and this beer imparts lots of the Nelson flavors. The funny thing is that there’s 1oz of Nelson in this beer and 4oz of Ariana. I’d challenge somebody with a solid recipe that uses Nelson to replace the Nelson with Ariana and evaluate. Since Nelson is so scarce, Ariana may have found its place.
I may do a cuvee using this and some white wine just cuz.