redcoat logov2


The last Bitter was a failure. Of sorts. With dry hopping, turned into a pretty good English IPA though. But it wasn’t what I intended. With the November event coming up, I really wanted to nail a true English Bitter. Something that might impress the Civil Life crowd that will be at the Southside Speakeasy. We also want a beer we can float Tom’s stout on top of for a true Black and Tan. I decided to go back to the beer that won a trophy. Redcoat ESB. This was the first English Bitter I brewed that I was truly proud of. Every one since has been a version of this beer but none stand out like this one. We also need beer for us all to drink since Oktoberfest drained our reserves.

This is identical to the original Redcoat with the exception of pumping up the malt a little to end with a final gravity high enough to float the dry stout on top. Would be really cool if this works out. We have been talking about this for a few years.

October 14, 2017

Redcoat ESB v2 (Extra Special/Strong Bitter (English Pale Ale) – 12 gallon

Brewers: Charles. Tom & Sam (morning crew). Rob (afternoon crew).

Redcoat_v2_ 2017-10-14




Grain Bill

  • 20 lbs. Maris Otter
  • 1 lb. 9 oz. Crystal 80
  • 1 lb. 8 oz. Special Roast
  • 1 lb. 3oz. Aromatic

Hop Bill

  • 4 oz East Kent Goldings 6.1% – 60 mins.
  • 1 oz East Kent Goldings 6.1% – 30 mins.


  • Wyeast 1968 London ESB

Mash Schedule

  • 8:50 – Mash In: 8 gallons @ 168˚ – mash 154˚ – Bump with 1 gallon -holding 155˚
  • 10:00 – Mash Out: 3 gallons @ 200˚ – holding 166˚
  • 10:10 – Vorlauf – cleared really fast.
  • 10:20 – Runoff
  • 11:00 – Runoff end. Collected 15 gallon


  • 11:20 – Boil – add 4 ounces EKG split between 2 hop screens
  • 11:50 – add 1 ounce EKG split between 2 hop screens
  • 12:20 – chiller – FORGOT THE IRISH MOSS
  • 12:30 – heat off – start chilling and whirlpool
  • Chilled to 78˚. Best we could do.


  • Transfer via WortPort in kitchen floor
  • Very little sludge in kettle. The least I have EVER seen.
  • 13 gallons in fermenter
  • Wort temp. 74˚
  • Oxygenate and pitch yeast.

Original Gravity – 1.058 – Dead on!


A very smooth brew day (except for forgetting the Irish Moss). The extra hands were much appreciated.

The hop screens were a huge success. It is nice to not fight all the crap in the bottom of the kettle and to transfer almost all the wort.

Helps to mount the end of the transfer hose above the fermenter so that the wort splashes. Aids in cooling and oxygenating.






“Heroes” AIPA

American IPA- 12 gallons

I am brewing this to enter into the Urban Chestnut Homebrew contest. It is a slightly different version of my DIPA. I am using a different yeast a little more White Wheat and dropping the grapefruit and tangerine peel.

Thursday September 7th, 2017

Brewer- Rob

Grain Bill-31lbs total

  • 15 lb. Simpson Golden Promise
  • 10 lb. 2-Row
  • 3 lb. White Wheat
  • 1 lb. Caramel Crystal 60L
  • 1 lb. Flaked Oats
  • 1 lb. Flaked Rice

Hop Bill

  • 2 oz. Simcoe- 60 min.
  • 2 oz. Citra- 15 min.
  • 4 oz. Mosaic- 5 min.
  • 2 oz. Citra- 5 min.
  • 2 oz. Amarillo- 0 min.
  • 2 oz. Mosaic – 0 min.
  • 2 oz. Simcoe- Dry hop 5 days in secondary
  • 2 oz. Citra- Dry hop 5 days in secondary


Omega DIPA OYL-052

In the past I have used Wyeast 1056 but wanted to try this yeast as I have had good success with other Omega yeasts. This one is known as the “Conan” as it is a strong fermenter and thought to originate from Heady Topper IPA in Vermont.

Calculated Stats:

  • OG: 1.072
  • FG: 1.018
  • IBU’s: 63
  • SRM: 7
  • ABV: 7.1

Mash schedule (Batch Sparge)

Treated 20.5 gallons of tap water with campden tablets the day before. Strike grain with 11 gallons @175 degrees. Held mash for 60 minutes at 156 degrees. Mash out with 1.5 gallons of boiling water. Mash reached 160 degrees. Vorlauf for 15 minutes collected 8 gallons. Added 8 gallons of 172 degree water and ran off 7 more gallons for a total of 15 in kettle. Discarded 1+ gallon of wort at end of runoff. Boil started at 12:05

Hop Schedule 

Used both hop spiders.

2 oz. Simcoe- 60 min.
2 oz. Citra- 15 min.
4 oz. Mosaic- 5 min.
2 oz. Citra- 5 min.
2 oz. Amarillo- 0 min.
2 oz. Mosaic – 0 min.
2 oz. Simcoe- Dry hop 5 days in secondary
2 oz. Citra- Dry hop 5 days in secondary

I started a whirlpool at 15 minutes and added Irish Moss. At ten minutes I added 3 tsp of Yeast nutrient. Because of using both spiders and the size of the chiller I decided to sanitize the chiller with star san and remove the hop spiders at the end of the boil and then add the chiller. Also the last 2 hop additions I added directly to the wort as I had removed the spiders.

Started cold break at 1:10pm could not get wort below 80 degrees. Pulled out chiller and kept whirlpool going while cleaning up. Ended up with 12+ gallons in the kettle lost some in hop spiders but boiled off 2+ gallons as it was furious boil. Pumped wort into fermenter but did not pitch yeast until about 9pm. It is currently bubbling away very steadily in the basement. Will wait until it slows and then transfer and dry hop it for 5 days. I should have brewed this 2 or 3 weeks ago as it may not be at its peak for the contest but it still should be a good beer. Measured the OG at 1.071 and sample tasted good and balanced. Will update this later. Cheers!

JAB – Just Another Bitter

I bought ingredients to brew a Bitter a few months ago. Just now getting around to it. I did buy some fresh yeast though and decided to try something different. I went with Wyeast 1469 – West Yorkshire Ale. As luck would have it, this would be my first solo brew day. I had a few issues that were more about just doing stupid things but all in all it went fairly smooth. Also, this will probably end up a more bitter beer than any of my previous Bitters.

Sunday August 13, 2017

Extra Special/Strong Bitter (English Pale Ale) – 11 Gallon

Brewers – Charles

Grain Bill

  • 18 lbs. Maris Otter
  • 1 lb. Aromatic
  • 1 lb. Biscuit
  • 1 lb. Crystal 60
  • 1 lb. Special

Hop Bill

  • 2 oz. Bramling Cross 6.5%
  • 1 oz. East Kent Golding 6.1 %
  • 1 oz. Fuggle 5%
  • 1 oz. Willamette 4.8%


  • Wyeast 1469 – West Yorkshire Ale

This strain produces ales with a full chewy malt flavor and character, but finishes dry, producing famously balanced beers. Expect moderate nutty and stone-fruit esters. Best used for the production of cask-conditioned bitters, ESB and mild ales. Reliably flocculent, producing bright beer without filtration.

Temperature range 64˚-72˚


  • Prepped 16 gallons tap water treated with Camden night before.

Calculated Stats


  • OG: 1.059
  • FG: 1.02
  • IBU: 45.9
  • SRM: 11.2
  • ABV: 5.1%



Mash Schedule

9:15 am

Mash In: 7.5 gal. at 168˚ – Step temp. 156˚ hold for 55 mins.

Mash Out: 2.8 gal. at 202˚ – Step temp. 168˚ hold for 10 mins.

Vorlauf: 10 mins.


Sparge with 7 gallons at 180˚

Collect 12.5 gallons.

Boil – 11:15 am

Hop Schedule

Using 1 hop spider

2 oz. Bramling Cross 6.5% – 60 mins.

1 oz. East Kent Golding 6.1% – 60 mins.

1 oz. Fuggle 5% – 60 mins.

1 oz. Willamette 4.8% – 60 mins.

Irish Moss


Chill start – 12:16 pm

Long chill and whirlpool while cleaning up.

Will not get lower than 80.

Chiller out. Continue whirlpool.

Move kettle to kitchen. Continue whirlpool.

Transfer through hole in floor.

Original Gravity – 1.056

Oxygenate and pitch yeast – 2:00 pm

Cleanup done at 2:30 pm

Another miss on OG? WTH? I have been thinking I hosed up BeerSmith settings or something. Maybe switch back to BrewToad.

Maybe stop futzing with recipes and just brew a bitter that worked good before.







Path of Totality

We’re gonna brew a magical elixir on the eclipse.

Based on the maps and calculations from the NASA website-

  • The eclipse starts (for us) at 11:49.
  • Totality begins at 1:16:48.
  • Totality ends at 1:18:33, lasting 105 seconds.
  • The partial eclipse will end at 2:43.

We are brewing a beer the morning of the eclipse, a Dry Stout. We will mash-in around 8AM. All are welcome.

We can send runners for bagels, donuts and kolaches… whatever, for breakfast as needed.

Our plan for lunch at the moment is pulled pork. It’s something we can make ahead of time and people can help themselves which is convenient on a working brew day. We’ll have potato salad, mac’ & cheese and other sides. As well as finger foods. Feel free to contribute your favorite picnic addition, but no worries, you’re company is all we want!

Brewing will take place for most of the morning and finish up in the early afternoon. By the time we get to totality, we’ll be nearly done.

It is helpful, but not req’d to bring the following to a brew day-

  • Beer mug
  • Lawn chair (for those doing extensive traveling, don’t worry about it, we’ve got extra)

We will have several beers on tap-

  • Northern English Brown
  • German Amber Ale (aka Bauhaus)
  • Peated Stout
  • Pepper IPA
  • Vienna Lager
  • Possibly others

The plan is to set up the bar, but that requires a bartender, something we usually don’t do on brew days since we’re busy brewing.

Sunday, August 20, will be busy as well. We’ll have out-of-town visitors joining us throughout the weekend. You are welcome on Sunday, but we will be busy with set-up, cleaning, cooking, etc…. We may put you to work. At the very least we will not be able to entertain much, so please be flexible and self-sufficient.

Last Call- This is a school night, and our party will come to a close as we pitch yeast. We’ll be returning to our regular schedules quickly…assuming this literally isn’t the end of the world.


  1. Tom V.
  2. Christine V.
  3. Emma V
  4. Dickie S.
  5. Charles U.
  6. Andy D.
  7. Kyle L.
  8. Michelle H.
  9. Astrid L.
  10. Kim V.
  11. Martin P.
  12. Linda V.
  13. Tom V.
  14. Nick V.
  15. Anita V.
  16. Ninetta V.
  17. Zach Z.
  18. Nico V.
  19. Mateo V.
  20. Victor A.
  21. Nada A.
  22. Doyle A.
  23. Harrison A.
  24. Silas A.
  25. Julia G.
  26. Barb D.
  27. Emma W.
  28. Emily F.
  29. Kelsey G.
  30. Amanda
  31. Dennis W.
  32. Ray

Brew Notes-

I’ve been wanting to successfully make a homebrewed Black & Tan for a while now. The trouble is brewing a dry enough stout that will float on a pale ale, assuming that final gravity is the key factor in making a layered beer. This will be a big brew of 30 gallons along with a big party to watch the eclipse. May the Sun, Moon and Earth align to bless this beer with magic.

Grain Bill-

  • 30# Maris Otter
  • 5# Munich Malt
  • 5# Flaked Barley
  • 4# Wheat
  • 4# Roasted Barley
  • ½# Peated Malt? (Game day decision- the question is, Do we replicate the award winning Peated Stout, or will the peat unfavorable not work well in a Black & Tan)

Hop Bill-

  • 8 oz 5% Fuggle 60′
  • 4 oz 5% EKG 60′


  • Wyeast 1084 Irish Ale


  • 45g St. Louis Co
  • Strike 15g 160F
  • Bump 9g Boil
  • Sparge 21g 175F

Mash Schedule-

  • Strike 15g @ 160F
  • Mash-in light grains @ 148F 90’
  • Bump to 160F w/ boiling water & add dark grains 20’
  • Add remaining bump water 10’
  • Sparge
  • Collect 40g & Boil with 12 ox EKG 60’
  • Irish Moss 15’

Calculated Stats-

  • OG = 1.044 (or lower)
  • FG = 1.012
  • ABV = 4%
  • IBU = 38


Racked all beer into one fermenter 1 week after brewing. Gravity = 1.008 on my hydrometer.

Oktoberfest Beer List 2017

Oktoberfest– Malty, lager goodness. Lots of alcohol per Fest beer requirements. Golden amber in color.

  • 6.2% ABV
  • OG = 1.062
  • FG = 1.015
  • IBU = low

Weizen- Liquid bread and a daily staple in Munich. Easy to drink.  Yellow and balanced.

  • 5% ABV
  • OG = 1.046
  • FG = 1.008
  • IBU = medium

DunkleWeizen- A darker version of the light colored Weizen with toast/roast notes. Dark brown in color.

  • 5% ABV
  • OG = 1.047
  • FG = 1.011
  • IBU = low

KircheWeizen- The tart cherry wheat makes its return, made from a secondary fermentation on top of tart cherries picked by Grandpop V.

  • 5.1% ABV
  • OG = 1.046 (but added sugar from the cherries boosts this number)
  • FG = 1.008
  • IBU = medium

PfefferWeizen- Rounding out our Wheat beers this year, this pepper beer has been spiced with Szechuan peppercorns.

  • 5% ABV
  • OG = 1.046
  • FG = 1.008
  • IBU = medium

Dortmunder Export- This beautiful lager returns. Malty, golden, clean, crisp. Subtle like a Pilsner but a touch more complex.

  • 5.1% ABV
  • OG = 1.048
  • FG = 1.008
  • IBU = low

Peach Dortmunder- We took the Dortmunder Export and sent it to secondary fermentation over peaches. We may have a new hit with this one.

  • 5.2% ABV
  • OG = 1.048
  • FG = 1.008
  • IBU = low

Pilsner- We tried this beer at the Crawfish Boil right out of fermentation. It was awesome then, and the cold summer lager turned it into one of the best beers here today.

  • 5% ABV
  • OG = 1.048
  • FG = 1.010
  • IBU = medium

Munich Helles- This is the typical lager beer consumed in the Bavarian beer gardens. Helles means “light”, but not in ABV or calories. Light in color only.

  • 5.3% ABV
  • OG = 1.054
  • FG = 1.013
  • IBU = low

Kölsch- A classic German ale, pale in color and easy to drink. This keg has benefitted from a long summer cold storage (a.k.a. lagering).

  • 5% ABV
  • OG = 1.048
  • FG = 1.010
  • IBU = low

Bauhaus Bier- Made from all German ingredients, this amber ale crosses the Kölsch yeast strain with the Oktoberfest grain bill to produce a unique amber ale.

  • 5% ABV
  • OG = 1.050
  • FG = 1.012
  • IBU = low

Berliner Weisse- A pale and mildly sour beer, that has been aging for over a year!

  • ABV = 3.2%
  • OG = 1.034
  • FG = 1.010
  • IBU = low

Berliner Weisse w/ Woodruff Syrup- Sweeten that sour beer with a splash of woodruff syrup just as they do in Berlin.

Berliner Weisse w/ Blood Orange Syrup- Or try it with blood orange syrup for something different.

Radlers- We can mix a beer with any soda to make a radler. Conventionally a Radler is lemonade and a light lager beer. Our house specialty though is the cherry soda in the Kirche Weizen.


Post Oktoberfest Notes-

Another successful Oktoberfest. Weather was perfect! It was sunny and in the mid 70’s. We consumed roughly 75 gallons of beer (14 kegs) with only splashes of the PfefferWeizen and Kolsch left. We barely tapped a keg of Weizen and the Berliner Weisse a partial. We consumed 225 pretzels and 150 or so sausages. No police or EMT’s were called, and all seemed to be happy.

Lots of positive feedback again on all the beers. The Oktoberfest was a winner and all three kegs were gone relatively early. Pilsner and Paech Dort were big hits. The PfefferWeizen was a success despite being super hot. The fans of the heat drank a lot of it.

Weizen 2017

July 30 brewed this year’s Weizen. 30 gallons. Good brew day. No worries. Continue to use same basic recipe as always. Double decoction.

Grain Bill-

  • 25# Pilsner malt DE
  • 25# Wheat malt DE
  • 2# 60L Crystal malt
  • 2# Carapils

Hop Bill-

  • 8 oz Traditions pellets. These are the same old pellets we used in the Oktoberfest and estimating 3.5% alpha. 60′
  • 2 oz Traditions 30′


  • Weihenstephaner. We used the yeast cake Charles had built from the Dunkleweizen.

Brew Day-

  • Strike 20g liquor at 140F +
  • Mash in at 127F 30′
  • Decoct 7g raise to 158F 15′
  • Boil decoction 30′
  • Recombine @ 152F 30′
  • Decoct 6g raise to boil 15′
  • Recombine at 157F 60′
  • Mashout w 10g hot liquor 10′
  • Recirculation 10′
  • Lauter 60′?
  • Collected and filled 40g kettle
  • Long cold break on hot sunny day. Used cooling coil and Thermonator.
  • Collected two 15g batches in 30g fermenters
  • OG= 1.046


This strong yeast has broken out of the fermenter even with 100% headroom. We made beer.

August 9, 2017- Racked beer to secondary. Gravity is low at 1.008. Sample is good, green, strong. Should be a fine beer.

Racked 5g on to 10# of tart cherries that Grand Pop had picked and I had pitted. I pasteurized the cherries for 10 minutes at 160F and then froze them. I put the frozen cherries in the fermenter and the beer kicked into another fermentation.

September 10, 2017- The Weizen is all kegged. It’s a little darker than I would like and a little “heavy” for such a light beer. The mouth feel is a little to full, but the flavor is right. I’m hoping that it improves with some bubbles and cold.

The Kirche Weizen was not good when I racked it a few weeks ago into a carboy, but I kegged it today and it was stellar. It will likely be the best version of this beer to day. It had a cherry aroma that I hope stays with this beer until the party. It also had good tartness. Color is really kind of a gold color with just a hint of pink.

I also put 5 gallons of Weizen with 1/2 cup Szechuan peppercorns. The original plan was to make a spicy wheat with chilies, but Christine had the peppercorns and after doing some research, it looked to be a good choice for both some spice and some pepper. Interestingly enough, these peppercorns don’t give heat like chilies do. Instead they have some chemical that sort of numbs the tongue. Apparently, this is the first time these peppercorns have gone into a beer. A brewery in China has already done so, and that seemed good enough to give this a try. I’m hoping for something peppery with a little heat. If it needs more heat, we have some dry Thai chilies we can add in a couple of weeks.

September 23, 2017- I tasted the PfefferWeizen after two weeks of Szechuan Peppercorns and there was little to no heat. I couldn’t really taste any significant difference between it and the regular Weizen beer. So, I added a handful of dried Thai chilies to the beer and will let them soak for a week prior to Oktoberfest. Hopefully it heats up the beer a little, but isn’t overpowering.

Dunkelweizen 2017

With lagering space at a premium, Charles decided to brew a Dunkelweizen instead of a Munich Dunkel so we can have a dark beer for this years Oktoberfest. And since two brews are better than one, Andy brewed a bastardized version of Charles’s Amarillo Wheat. But fancy boy will add his honey to secondary so it will surely be better. It was predicted to be in the mid 90’s so Charles had everything in the garage and ready to go Saturday night. Flame on in the morning for the Dunkelweizen would be 6:10 am in the hope of beating the heat. Both beers were finished, cleaned up and Andy’s beer was in his basement by 2 pm. Early starts are awesome. We dined on rib meat tacos.

July 16, 2017

Dunkelweizen 10g

Charles, Andy, Baily, Rob, and special guest appearance by Kyle and Astrid.

Calculated Stats

  • OG – 1.049 – actual 1.046
  • IBU – 10*
  • SRM – 18
  • FG – 1.011
  • ABV – 5%

Grain Bill-

  • 10 lbs. Munich
  • 10 lbs. White Wheat
  • 14 oz. Roasted
  • 4.5 oz. Dehusked Carafa

Hop Bill-

  • 2 oz. German Hallertau 3.8% – 60 mins.
  • *A slight miscalculation. When creating recipe in BeerSmith, I left the default alpha for Hallertau (4.8%) in the recipe. Should have been 3.8%. Drops the IBU down to 10 but it is still in style. Might dry hop to bump it back up. (NOT).

Yeast- Wyeast 3068 Weihenstephan

The classic and most popular German wheat beer strain used worldwide. This yeast strain produces a beautiful and delicate balance of banana esters and clove phenolics. The balance can be manipulated towards ester production through increasing the fermentation temperature, increasing the wort density, and decreasing the pitch rate. Over pitching can result in a near complete loss of banana character. Decreasing the ester level will allow a higher clove character to be perceived. Sulfur is commonly produced, but will dissipate with conditioning. This strain is very powdery and will remain in suspension for an extended amount of time following attenuation. This is true top cropping yeast and requires fermenter headspace of 33%.

Temperature range 64˚-75˚

Water- Prepped 37ish gallons (for both beers) night before, treated with camden.

Single Infusion, medium body.

Mash Schedule-

  • Mash In – 6:45 am – 6.5 gallons at 165˚ – Step Temp. 152˚ hold 60 mins. – Actual 147˚
  • At 30 mins., bumped with 1 gallon 190˚ – Mash temp. 152˚
  • Mash Out – 7:50 am – 3 gallons at 210˚ – Mash temp. 169˚ hold 10 mins.
  • Vorlauf approx. 10 mins.
  • Runoff and sparge – collected 14 gallons.

Hop Schedule-

  • 2 oz. German Hallertau 3.8% Alpha – 60 mins.
  • Potential dry hop in secondary.

Chilled and transferred 11 gallons. Starter brought to almost 12 gallons.

Gravity = 1.046 😦  For some reason Rob is very fixated on this.

Feasted on Country Rib Tacos.

Sunday 7:30 pm – moderate bubble, ramping up fast – room temp. 73˚

July 23, 2017

Racked to secondary. Harvested yeast for Tom to use on the upcoming Weizen brew day (July 30). Dumped the yeast cake into a sanitized bucket that Tom will put on his big ass stir plate. He will add sugar throughout the week to increase yeast count for 30+ gallons.

Aug. 2, 2017

Bottled 3 gallons and racked 4 gallons to each of 2 kegs.

Final Gravity = 1.012 – ABV = 4.4% – Not what it should be but will be a good session beer for Oktoberfest. Probably a good thing to have one or two low ABV beers.

Side Note – August 30, 2017

The harvested yeast went crazy in the 5 gallon bucket. Tom had to take it off the stir plate a few times. We had more than enough yeast to pitch in both 30 gallon barrel fermenters each with 16 gallons wort. By Monday, the headspace was completely filled by foam…”Damn you banana yeast, damn you”.