Friday, April 13, 2012

Toad Chateau Red Headed Stepchild Tasting

Toad Chateau Red Headed Stepchild
Our annual springfest always includes a Red Rye beer of some sort. This year it was Toad Chateau Red Headed Stepchild. This beer recipe was developed solely as a way to test out the Caramel Rye Malt that was noticed at our local homebrew shop.

Appearance: Photo does not do this beer justice. It had a beautiful rich red color tipped just a bit toward brown. The head was tight little bubbles of white in color. While this photo shows it rather hazy after a few days it settled nice in the keg ad tapped crystal clear.

Aroma: Very low hop aroma, followed by medium malt aromas. Slightly toasted toffee or molasses like notes, with hits of old-fashioned root beer, and dry cocoa powder. Complex and pleasing, significantly more dark roasted aromas then one would expect from the color.

Taste: A good medium mouth feel with a pleasant level of carbonation. Lots of toffee and caramel on the front of the pallet, with hints of cocoa, black pepper, and licorice on the finish. Very clean flavors.

Overall: Easy smooth and pleasant to drink. This beer struck the middle of the road during or Springfest. Hoppier the the Scotch Ale, and sweeter and smoother then the IPA. I think that this is one worth brewing again.

  • J - 7
Brew day info is Here.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Toad Chateau Copper Hopper Tasring

Toad Chateau Copper Hopper
Sometimes failure is not a failure at all but just a different type of success. this is what we have here. Originally the attempt was to brew Toad Chateau Trypple, but, there were many many problems with brewing equipment. The result was that the mash temps and times were missed, the hopping schedule was all off etc. All in all a very frustrating brew day. Yet this was not to get the better of us, as perseverance through adversity led to the creation instead of a Belgian Style IPA.

Appearance: Huge off white head with above average retention, nice lacing. The beer itself is a deep gold / warm copper color, lighter then the photo makes it look. There were a few green floaters in this pour, as the beer was keg hopped with 1/2oz each of Chinook Leaf, and Galena Pellet hops.

Aroma: Definitively Belgian Yeast. A bit of a damp hay / wet grass though it is fleeting, this may be due to one month of keg hopping as much as to yeast.. A good bit of citrus in the orange or kumquat arena, with a bit of a cooked honey note. And hops, lots of fresh floral hop notes.

Taste: Medium body with a crisp dry finish. The flavor is very hoppy with just enough malt to balance. Think barely warm bread with orange marmalade while sitting in a flower garden as the dew evaporates in the morning sun. And to finish a full twist of grapefruit rind wrapped in pine, has to be the Chinook hops.

Overall: Well this basically came down to do you like bitter grapefruit and wet hay? Either Yes and the beer is tasty or no and get that away from me. While we had this on tap for our Springfest it seemed to be the second most popular behind the Toad Chateau Misty Moorings Scotch Ale.

  • J - 7
  • K - 4
  • T - 3.5
Sorry no recipe for this one. Here is a link to the Toad Chateau Trypple, to make the Copper Hopper, drop the candi syrup and hop every 15 minutes with 1 oz of noble hops. 

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Toad Chateau Misty Moorings Tasting

Toad Chateau : Misty Moorings
Toad Chateau Misty Moorings Scotch Ale was brewed to be our premier beer at the 2012 Spring Fest party at Toad Chateau. Dark malty and complex yet smooth.

Appearance: It poured fairly clear with a deep chestnut color. We had a lot of keg jostling during the last week so the slight turbidity was not unexpected. The head was composed of fine bubbles, a nice tan color too. It fell faster then most of the beers we have brewed but did still linger in a fine layer through most of the glass.

Aroma: A good nose of malt with a bend towards toffee and caramel, maybe just a whiff of burnt sugar and smoke in the background. As it warmed there was a fairly pronounced black cherry note and a bit of spicy herbal hops that started to show. If served warm this would be very similar to a Belgian Dubble, or Dark Strong in aroma.

Taste: Very smooth, not quite as silky as an Oatmeal Stout but for no oats about as close as you could get. The body seemed a bit lighter then the aroma would lead one to believe, but otherwise excellent. The flavors came through with a good maltiness, noticeable kettle caramelization, solid cherry like fruitiness but not overpowering. The hops were perfectly absent. And after a few sips you could easily feel a pleasant alcohol warmth radiating up from your belly.

Overall: A very nice beer. Sweet, Malty, & Strong. Nothing here that I would object too. The cherry notes might be a bit strong, not sure if that was due to the Caramunich II or the Cherrywood Smoked Malt. Also I was expecting a bit more of a smokey note to come through since the ECY07 lists smokey as part of the flavor profile. But as I said the beer was very well received by all.

  • J - 6
  • K - 8.5
  • T - 5

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Toad Chateau Red Headed Stepchild

Sorry for the lateness of this post we have been busy brewing up a storm here at Toad Chateau. So how did our brewday go on the 15th you ask? Well, let me tell you....
The plan for this day was to brew 10 gallons of Red Rye. We were looking for a nice amber beer to serve at our Springfest on March 24th. Also, I wanted to brew an additional Flanders Red style ale for aging and blending. So the recipe can be found here. Everything went fairly well surprisingly. Ended up with a bit less then expected due to some particulate displacing wort in the boil kettle and thusly showing too high of a volume, but... otherwise pretty good.
This was the first beer we have brewed using Crystal Rye. The expectations are very high for a good spiciness with licorice hints. The grist smelled wonderful. Took a bit of work to get 23# of grain ground and into a 5gal bucket but we managed. The first rest for this beer was @ 117f for 30 minutes. The second rest @ 154f for one hour, we needed to recirculate the wort for about 30 minutes in order to achieve this temperature. I made the decision that for ease of brewing I would brew 'entire' and do three batch sparges for our beer. The first pull was 6.5Gal, this was sent to the boil kettle. My observation at the time was that the color seemed a little light for my hoped target. The Mash Tun was then refilled the temperature checked and @ 152f allowed to rest for an additional hour. The second runnings were pulled totaling an additional 5Gal. The final runnings were pulled after a 30 minute rest at 148F and totaled 3.5Gal. Total pull of 15Gal from 23# of grain.

And now we boil, and we boil, and boil.......... (Following the hop schedule on the recipe.)

As we approached our final intended volume it became clear that we were going to miss or color mark. So using quick thinking and a survey of our available malts, I grabbed 1/4oz of crushed black malt and tossed it into the boil with 40minutes left. It helped a bit but still not quite what I wanted, so I grabbed the last dark malt I had, 3oz of chocolate wheat. I added this with 5 minutes to go in the boil. After flame out I let the wort sit for 10 minutes before chilling and sending to the carboy. This was perfect as the color was a gorgeous ruby.

Chilled and ready we pitched Wyeast 1768 into one carboy, and ECY02 into the other. Tasting notes for these beers will come sooner and later, as the 1768 version will be served at the end of the month.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Welcome To Toad Chateau!!

Well everybody this is it. the inaugural post to the Toad Chateau Blog. MY hope is to update frequently with the various crazy and unorthodox brewing excitement that occurs here at Toad Chateau. Tomorrow will be a brewday involving 10gal of TC-Red Headed Stepchild. With any luck Everything will be posted by the end of the week! Happy Reading