Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Farmer In the Rye Tasting Notes

I apologize for the delay in posts for pretty much the entire month of April.  I didn't brew much this month and took a little time off to get some beers packaged and just take a short break for some other hobbies among other things.  I'm back today with a tasting notes post.

You may remember my exciting brew day for Farmer In the Rye a while back.  Had a pretty interesting day with the water line bursting and having to cool the wort overnight.  You can catch up about that entire process on the brewing post here.  Fermentation went through without a hitch and the beer turned out quite well.

Here are the tasting notes for Farmer In the Rye:

ABV: 6.3%
SG:  1.050 or 12.39°P
FG:  1.002 or 0.51°P
Apparent Attenuation:  96%
Actual Attenuation:  78.14%

Appearance:  Golden in color with hints of copper in certain lights.  Crystal clear after spending time in the keg (even the ones in bottles have dropped really clear.)  Bright white head with tight bubbles that lingers around throughout drinking the beer.  Really awesome lacing around the glass as I drink.  I'm loving the color.  It's darker than Kathleen and there is definitely a visual difference in the two.  Not that it really matters, I do like my beers to not all look identical when pouring for friends.

Letting the sun do it's work to add the skunkiness.  JK JK just getting a look
at the beer in the light of the sun.  I didn't detect any skunkiness when drinking.

Aroma:  Saaz spiciness and floral notes from the EKG are definitely noticeable.  Some of the spice could definitely be coming form the rye.  There is a noticeable bready, malt aroma there too.  Faint citrus/lemon notes but those take a back seat to the previous things.  Rounding out the nose is the specific character I get from 3726.  Just a hint of tartness and more expressed pepper. 

The scene of the brew day incident.

Flavor:  Initial flavor on the palate is again the spice.  There is a pepper spice but also a earthy and, for lack of a better term, rustic spice that I would say is a touch grassy.  It is a bit like a black pepper spice but not overwhelming at all.  The back end of the mouth there is a citrus-y lemon note that also seems a bit tart.  Not a sour tart but more like a pithy citrus rind, borderline bitter, tartness.  I'm not sure how to explain that part unless you've ever taken a bite of a lemon or maybe a grapefruit rind.  It finishes with some great bread and malt flavors I'm sure from the combination of the Pilsner and rye malt.  Then there is just a slight hint of sweetness that's almost honey like.  It finishes nice and dry like I intended and only the slightest spice lingering after the swallow.

Mouthfeel:  Medium mouthfeel that could go to medium/full if the carbonation was lower.  The carbonation is tingly on the tongue and helps move the beer through the mouth, changing the flavors in and out.

Overall:  I really like this beer.  Ed nailed the recipe for sure.  I do also like beers with a higher rye content maybe even up to 30% but this lends the wonderful aspects of rye malt without it going over the top.  It adds the rustic quality and I think the perfect amount of flavors and mouthfeel from the grain.  I've had and brewed beers with a higher rye content but this one seems to be perfect levels for what it's trying to achieve.  The malt, hops and yeast all played great together to create an extremely drinkable and flavorful beer.

Wonderful lacing.  The cap of head also stuck around through the entire glass.

I've had others drink this from the tap and really like it as well.  Without anything like LAB or brett I think this is a beer that many will love without having to be a diehard fan of the Saison style.  Some have tasted it and wanted to have brett and/or LAB qualities so I think I'll be brewing this again for some coupage action or even ferment with my house culture of different strains.  Either way I do it, this one is definitely worth brewing many more times.  It is a super solid beer on it's own and definitely a solid base for blending and mixed fermentation.

I'll be back soon with another post of some tasting notes.  I'm combining a couple others into one longer post to get them out there for people to read.  I'll also be brewing another batch of Kathleen this weekend with a few tweaks to the recipe.  Looking forward to blending another batch of that beer!

Good things!

Andrew "Gus" Addkison
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