Saturday, November 1, 2014

#35 Parti-gyle English Barleywine - Recipe

Recipe     -     Brewday     -     Tasting

As my roommate Chris put it, I just got my first gig!  A friend wants me to brew a batch to serve at an upcoming art show.  More on that beer and the event later, but one of the requirements is that the beer must be brewed from second runnings, meaning I have to brew a big beer first.  I certainly don't need much persuasion for that.

Splitting the runnings from the mash into separate boils is known as parti-gyle brewing, and is an extremely old technique.  It is not often used anymore, except by a few English breweries such as Fuller's.  However it can be very useful for brewing large beers like barleywines without sacrificing efficiency.  After draining out the concentrated first-runnings from the mash tun, there is still plenty of sugar left to make a second, weaker beer.  Check out the links at the bottom of the page for more how-to info.

The beer for the art show is going to be an English bitter, so the big beer must also be something fairly pale.  I haven't brewed a barleywine so I might as well give it a try.  Barleywines are descended from the long line of English stock ales, stingos, and other strong ales.  The first beer to bear the name was Bass No. 1 Ale, the strongest ale from the famous Burton brewery made--as I'm doing here--from the first runnings of the mash.  I find the etymology of beer terms fascinating as it sheds light on shifting brewing practices as well as the public perception of their products.  I won't go into detail here, but Martyn Cornell again has a great article on the history of barleywine.

The signature of the beer we now recognize as barleywine is big malt flavor with a serious alcohol punch.  They tend to be fairly pale--at least when compared to imperial stouts--foregoing dark-kilned malts in order to showcase the flavorful English pale malt.  American barleywines tend to have more hops, both for bitterness and for flavor, while English versions let the malt be the star.  I'm not generally a fan of barleywine as the bold alcohol flavor is usually too much for me.  However my favorite examples--Sucaba from Firestone-Walker, Olde Bluehair from Big Sky, and Rye-on-Rye from Boulevard Brewing--all manage to soften the edges with a delicious caramelly sweetness.

As this will be my first barleywine, I plan on keeping things simple with 100% floor malted Maris Otter from Thomas Fawcett.  I still have some Guiness yeast on hand that's been recultured a couple times so I'll use that.  The ester profile and high attenuation should fit perfectly in a barleywine.  I grabbed a pound of Willamette hops this summer to use in English ales and stouts so I'll use some of those here.

I originally planned to use them for bittering as well, but noticed that their cohumulone content is extremely high.  Conventional brewing wisdom states that high-cohumulone hops create a harsher bitterness, but that has been questioned lately.  This link nicely sums up the research on the subject.  The verdict, while not conclusive, is that cohumulone is more soluble than adhumulone so the total bitterness just increases, as measured by laboratory IBU tests,  If the hop quantities are adjusted so that the final IBUs match, there should be no discernible difference in the character of the bitterness.  I could pick up some Magnum or Horizon to play it safe, but I think the Willamette will be just fine.

Parti-gyle Barleywine
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.25 gal
Estimated ABV: 9.8 %
Estimated OG: 1.099 SG
Estimated FG: 1.025 SG
Estimated Color: 6.6 SRM
Estimated IBU: 54.4 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 65.00 %
Boil Time: 90 Minutes

Amt           Name                                     %/IBU
21 lbs        Pale Malt, Maris Otter (2.6 SRM)         100.0 %
3.00 oz       Willamette [7.50 %] - Boil 60.0 min      49.4 IBUs
0.50 oz       Willamette [7.50 %] - Boil 20.0 min      5.0 IBUs
1.00 Items    Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 10.0 mins)        -
0.50 oz       Willamette [7.50 %] - Boil 0.0 min       0.0 IBUs
1.0 pkg       Irish Ale Yeast (Wyeast Labs #1084)      -

Mash Schedule: Parti-gyle
Total Grain Weight: 21 lbs
Estimated Cost: $41.55

Parti-gyle Links:
BYO: Parti-gyle Brewing Techniques
Brewing Techniques: Parti-gyle Brewing
Brew Board: Parti-gyle Brewing FAQ
Braukaiser: Batch Sparge and Parti-gyle Simulator
Brew Strong: Parti-Gyle

Barleywine Links:
BYO: Big Bad Barleywine
The Jamil Show: English Barleywine and American Barleywine
Zythophile: What is the difference between barley wine and old ale?

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