It’s been such a long time…
Funny how two weeks can turn in to three months, huh? Well, school came crashing in at full force, including the most ridiculous Gopher football schedule/season I have ever seen. Along the way, my attention was pulled from this endeavor, but I shall now return with a revived fervor.
So, way back, when the universe was but a singularity waiting to explode, I crafted a beer known as “Leftover EPA.” It was then bottled, and sat for many a fornight. I have since had several of those bottles and enjoyed them very much. Tonight I shall open one for my first–of what I hope to be many–tastings. Since I’m new to this, I’ve followed the guide on tasting format, as given by BeerAdvocate.
Pale amber color. Using wikipedia’s SRM entry and the backlight of my laptop screen, I’d estimate an SRM value of approximately 8. Despite being a light color, the beer seems darker than it actually is because it is incredibly cloudy. As mentioned in the brewing write-up, a lot of sediment from the loose leaf hops made it into the carboy and then into the bottles. I have done a better job of decanting the beer with previous bottles. This bottle was laying down before being chilled for only 1 1/2 to 2 hours. The beer was rather thin on head; I tried to pour softly to limit sediment pick-up and the beer was rather cold as well. What head did form was very white, and clung to the wals of the glass for a good minute or two before receeding back to the beer.
Very soft odor, again possibly due to the cold serving temp, although it did not increase upon warming. A noticeable alcohol pungency, and a slight touch of spicy/citrus hops. Also a hint of raw sugar scent in the background.
Incredibly sweet. This bottle is much sweeter than other bottles. It may be again to serving temp, but it seems too far out to be such. Could this bottle have received more bottling sugar? Maybe less yeast made it to the bottle and less fermentation took place? After the sweetness subsides, a huge hit of hops bitterness floods the tongue. The bitterness is not very intense, but there is a lot of it.
The beer is very smooth, and creamy. The carbonation is mellow, so the there is no harsh carbon-dioxide buzz found with highly carbonated beer. It also feels very thick on the tongue.
The beer is easily drinkable, but the sweetness prevents me from drinking more than one in a sitting. With time, the sweetness may settle down, but the hop presence will as well. If I repeat this recipe, I may substitute a yeast with a higher attenuation rate or decrease the amount of malt. Using a yeast starter or possibly re-pitching are possible alternatives.
I have at least one bottle left, I believe there are actually two. I will be sure to properly prepare these bottles and review them to compare differences from bottle to bottle.