In the style of
I found a homebrew recipe for Stone Arrogant Bastard, and thought I'd try my hand at brewing it. I like Stone's beers a lot, and the Arrogant Bastard is probably one of my favorites. To be able to replicate it on my own would be no small personal accomplishment.
I happily took the list of ingredients to Gentiles, my preferred local homebrew supplier. Alas, I was informed by the clerk that their ingredient selection was pretty slim, as there had recently been a larger-than-normal interest in homebrewing. Gentiles didn't have any of the Chinook hops called for in the recipe, only half the required 2 Row Pale Malt, and none of the CaraMunich.
I waffled for a bit whether to throw in the towel, or whether to try to alter the recipe based on what was in stock. After some deliberation, I finally settled on the latter, thinking that this was a good opportunity to learn a little more about the complex interactions of malts, hops, and yeast. Rather than recreating Stone Arrogant Bastard, I would create a beer "in the style of" Stone Arrogant Bastard.
I replaced Chinook hops with Galena, since they're close to the same alpha percentage. I used seven pounds of 2 Row Pale Malt, and six pounds of Pale Ale Malt. In place of the pound of CaraMunich malt, I used a pound of Crystal 40L. I also bumped up the Aromatic Malt to a full two pounds, since that malt was only sold in one pound packages.
I'm sure this will dramatically alter the flavor of the beer, but that's okay. This will be my beer, as opposed to Stone's beer. I'm not sure what to expect, flavor-wise, so this will be a good learning experience. As long as it doesn't completely suck, I'll be happy!
The mash and brew process was largely uneventful. I had a little boilover at the start of my boil, but that was quickly remedied and the remainder of the boil went smoothly.
In a couple of weeks Elevator Brewery will be hosting a "collaborative brew". They supply the wort, and homebrewers bring their gear to brew on-premise. The recipe they're making is Poor Richard's Ale, which looks pretty good. I'm hoping to get in on that.
I still have a German Super Alt fermenting -- I just racked it to the secondary yesterday -- so is looks like I'll have a number of beers going at once here. When these all settle down, I hope to try to brew a Dogfish Head 60 Minute IPA recipe or a Bell's Two Hearted recipe.