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» Minesweeper Ale

Minesweeper Ale

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Viking Brewhouse Minesweeper Ale is a light Porter style ale of 5.0% alc/vol. Batch brewed from selected premium ingredients in the original equipment passed down from my grandfather, Charlie (Pop) Unmack, this easy drinking ale celebrates his life and his love of a good cold beer.
Named ‘Minesweeper’ as a monument to Pop’s time in the navy during World War II aboard the Minesweeping vessel ORARA keeping shipping areas around Australia safe and clear of deadly sea mines, and the influence these experiences had on the rest of his life.
Sadly Pop passed away in April 2005 but he lives on with us in happy memories. Minesweeper Ale is my salute to a great man.

Start 22-04-06

Cascade Chocolate Mahogany Porter Can (1.7kg) x1
Amber liquid malt extract tub (1.7kg) x1
150g CSR dark brown sugar
Safale yeast x 11g sachet

*Liquid yeast starter - 200ml filtered water; 2-3 tsp sucrose - disolved with yeast mixed in at 21-23 deg C
*Wort pitch temp - 20 deg C
*Fermentation temp aim - 20 deg C
*Thoroughly mixed yeast starter into wort. *Next time DON’T mix Safale into wort - settles out and clumps badly too quickly. Should gently pour onto top of wort - (see brew #6, Battleaxe Strong Amber)
*Start SG 1.051 @ 19deg C
*Smaller fermenter used. Filled with filtered water up to lower ridge at top of fermenter (approx 21 litres total)
*SG 1.020 @21deg C - Brew starting to become very clear. Yeast has dropped out signiicantly. Possibly required to add some yeast at bottling. ferlentation very slow now - has been slow all the way through. BIG mistake to mix ale yeast into wort. Liquid starter carefully poured into top of wort seems to work very well - as was done with Battleaxe Strong Amber. Increased temp to 24deg C.
*SG 1.018 - Temp increase has not improved yeast activity. Want to get brew off old yeast. Racked to new fermenter. Add new strong proven liquid yeast starter, temp 23deg C. DID NOT MIX THIS YEAST IN. Carefully poured onto top ot brew.

*Bottled 05-05-06. Used standard liquid sugar (sucrose) mix into bottles.
*Final SG 1.016.
*Yield - 57 x 375ml bottles @ 5% alc/vol.

*Strong honey and butter smells apparent when bottling - most likely due to stalled fermentation.
*Danger of bottles exploding if fermentation did stall & there is still fermentables left over along with priming sugar.
*Fermentation possibly stalled due to mixing in of yeast initially, the lack of a strong starter and low fermentation temp.
*Final SG higher than expected possibly due to addition of dark brown sugar ( even in a small amount) and poor fermentation.

Possible Improvements
*Raise fermentation temp a bit from 20deg C to 22-24deg C
*Don’t mix in yeast, gently pour into top of wort - seems to work well - see Battleaxe Strong Amber

Start Gravity 1.056
Final Gravity 1.016
Fermentation temp Initial 19deg C, Secondary 22deg C avg.
Fermentation length - 13 days
Yield - 57 x 375ml bottles @ approx 5% alc/vol