Chris has mentioned his fondness for the Amber Adder beer from Lidl so I thought I would post this one up, its not going to be the same as that but its in the general vicinity style wise and in my opinion is an excellent beer in its own right, nice maltiness with a touch of residual sweetness, fruity but balanced hops and a touch of spice from the rye on the finish.

The recipe is a shameless rip off of an amber recipe from the Bertus Brewery site but adapted to feature one of my favourite ingredients rye. If I did this again I think I would sub in some Simcoe, probably for the Cascade and some or all of the dry hops. Simcoe is king in this style of beer as far as I am concerned, I love the combination of big tropical fruit aroma and in your face pineyness that it brings especially when balanced by a rich malt bill as you see here.

Batch size: 23 Litres
Brewhouse efficiency: 78%
OG: 1.053
FG: 1.012
IBUs: 47.3
ABV: 5.5%
EBC: 25.4


4 kg Pale Ale Malt
0.35 kg Crystal Rye
0.3 kg CaraMalt
0.3 kg Rye Malt
0.3 kg Munich Malt
0.08 kg Chocolate Rye (or normal Choc Malt)


20g Nugget at 60 minutes (or use any clean bittering hop)
30g Cascade at 15 minutes
30g Amarillo at 0 minutes
30g Centennial at 0 minutes
30g Citra dry hop for 5 days
15g Columbus dry hop for 5 days



Mash at 67c

Ferment at 20c

Here is a video of my attempt at a DIY mash tun based on the instructable project here, my version has a few tweaks to the design. It didn’t go entirely smoothly and my first mash in it got stuck big time but I think I have solved that issue and will report back once I have done the second test. If you fancy a go here is what I used:

3 Old FVs/Boiler Bucket (Need to be same size so they fit together)
Tank Connector
90deg Brass Elbow
Hex Nipple
Ball Valve
Expanding Foam
Thermawrap Insulation

A drill with 2-3mm bit and a 20mm spade

There will be loads of the insulation and foam left over, I used it to add insulation to my shed roof.

So, after the cock up that was my last brew, I decided to stock up on dried yeasts so that it didn’t happen again. I decided to go for a range of yeasts with some specific to brews I’m planning on doing soon and some for the future…

This is what I ended up with. Any suggestions for brews involving these yeasties welcomed. Help me choose the right beers for the yeast!


You may have read my post a couple days ago about my potentially failed brew, well, it seems its not as failed as I thought, and is in fact chugging along quite nicely now after the introduction of a non dead yeast…

Yep, you guessed it, the wonderful Wyeast Ringwood liquid yeast I inoculated with initially was dead. It’d been in the fridge for 8 weeks, and I honestly didn’t give it any thought at all before smacking it, and pitching it. Guess I really should have done.

Lesson Learned. Buy fresh yeast for brews you know you’ll have time to do VERY SOON, and keep a damned good stock of dried JIC.

Seems a few of the liquid yeasties were alive, and have begun making babies as I am getting a very interesting nose from the bucket which isn’t Weiss (From the MJ20 I pitched) but an estery almost floral mix…

Guess we’ll see how this one ends up, but it’s not the failure I first thought…

In the vain of Dudes recipes, I thought I’d share one of my favourites, and an absolute ever present staple of my beer arsenal…

Moose’ Brew

Brew Method: All Grain
Style Name: Weissbier
Boil Time: 60 min
Batch Size: 23 liters (fermentor volume)
Boil Size: 31 liters
Boil Gravity: 1.036
Efficiency: 70% (brew house)


Original Gravity: 1.049
Final Gravity: 1.011
ABV (standard): 4.93%
IBU (tinseth): 12.38
SRM (morey): 5.01


3 kg – German – Wheat Malt (56.6%)
2 kg – German – Pilsner (37.7%)
150 g – Rice Hulls (2.8%)
0.15 kg – German – Caramel Wheat (2.8%)


20 g – Hallertau Hersbrucker, 60 min, IBU: 9.08
20 g – Hallertau Hersbrucker, 10 min, IBU: 3.29


1) Sparge, Temp: 66 C, Time: 60 min, Amount: 15 L
Starting Mash Thickness: 3.5 L/kg


Wyeast – Weihenstephan Weizen 3068
Starter: No
Form: Liquid
Attenuation (avg): 75%
Flocculation: Low
Fermentation Temp: 22 C

This comes out as a very clean, extremely close Weihenstephaner clone and a very nice weissbier. My brother in law loves the beer, so I decided to make him some for christmas, and it turned out amazing. I’ve since done another 2 batches scaled down to 10L and it doesnt hang around very long at all. Give it a shot, its Weihenstaphaner just at 30p a bottle…

Continuing the Golden Ale theme here is one that uses one of the less well know NZ hops, Wakatu, to deliver a really light and refreshing Blonde/Golden Ale, looking at the hopping schedule you would expect this to be more in the American Pale category but the Wakatu hops are very subtle and the end result was not the sort of hop bomb you might expect with that quantity of late additions. This is probably down to the noble heritage (hallertau) of this strain and the modest levels of oils they contain. My tasting notes for this brew ‘Smooth fruity taste with a zesty but mellow lime finish, clean malt profile and a light frothy mouthfeel’. The grist here is a good base for golden/pale ales generally, use different caramel/crystal malts to adjust the colour.

Batch size: 23 Litres
Brewhouse efficiency: 70%
OG: 1.041
FG: 1.008
IBUs: 37
ABV: 4.4%


4 kg Pale Ale Malt
0.35 kg Munich Malt
0.2 kg CaraGold (Or Caramalt or Light Crystal etc etc)


22g Topaz at 60 minutes (or use any clean bittering hop)
20g Wakatu at 10 minutes
50g Wakatu at 0 minutes
30g Wakatu dry hop for 5 days


US05 or consider an English strain for a more estery character

Mash at 65c

Ferment at 20c

This is a Pale Ale recipe from Australia although style wise its more of a British Golden/Pale Ale or Bitter, then again its also got American hops in so maybe its not worth trying to categorise at all! Anyway its very popular and rates extremely highly on the beersmith recipe database. I have made this as a partial mash and all grain and it’s been great both times.

Batch size: 23 Litres
Brewhouse efficiency: 80%
OG: 1.046
FG: 1.010
IBUs: 35
ABV: 4.7%


2.44 kg Pilsner Malt
0.8 kg Wheat Malt
0.8 kg Munich Malt
0.24 kg Weyermann CaraMunich II


20g Amarillo at 60 minutes
26g Amarillo at 20 minutes
26g Amarillo at 0 minutes


US05 or consider an English strain for a more estery character

Mash at 66c

Ferment at 20c


So, I went to a beer festival (the Magna Real Ale Festival in Sheffield) last saturday and ended up having a couple of pints of Why kick a Moo Cow by Arbor Ales, a very nice pint with a wonderful fruity twist and a good hoppy flavour, while avoiding my personal gripe of making them too bitter.

I tried to replicate a version of this, aimed for the right colour, had the correct hops and did a quick blast with some fairly neutral yeast but it just hasnt started bubbling yet. No Krausen, no activity of any kind…


I’ve pitched the only yeast I had in stock (Mental note, order more…) which was a Belgian weiss yeast, and I’m hoping this will pull it through.

Have you ever had one just not start? I havent changed a thing in my process, and the starting gravity was on point with what was expected (1.050) so I’m a little concerned that something may be wrong with my sanitation and sterilisation routine for this one…

Heres hoping the yeasties pull one back and this beer comes to fruition…