Ireland has just had its first full scale, multi category brewing competition. Organised by the National Homebrew Club, there were about 350 entries over 8 categories. I managed to enter all but the Cider/Perry category, and some of my results shall forevermore be passed over in silence (my Weiss got such a low score it must have exploded in the judges’ faces).
Nonetheless, my well hopped American Amber beer won first place in the Pale Ales and IPAs (BJCP Styles 8,10,14)! I was told it was one of the largest categories, with over 90 entries, so I’m quite delighted. I called it “The Blood of Revolution”, since it was quite red, and it reminded me of the famous quotation from Thomas Jefferson, that
“Occasionally the tree of Liberty must be watered with the blood of Patriots and Tyrants.”
All the organisers and stewards from the NHC did a great job, and although I had to leave just before the announcements, I’ve been told there are some goodies from Eight Degrees waiting for me, so thanks to them for sponsoring that category! Congrats to Reuben from http://www.taleofale.com/ with his silver medal winning “Dark Stranger”, I remember drinking an ancestor of it (Cloaked Stranger) many moons ago at an ICB homebrewers’ meetup. It was narrowly pipped to the Stout Gold Medal by the eventual overall winner, Belfast Brewer Chris Todd.
In any case, for those of you who are interested, here is the recipe, it’s not too busy or complicated. Using such a large proportion of crystal malt was something of an experiment, and I mashed at a middling temperature to reduce the potential heaviness. Although the IBU should theoretically be near 80, I don’t think it was, since the Green Bullet I used were a little old, and not vacuum stored. The Cascade and Galaxy were also old, but well stored so I expect they contributed less IBU than the calculations supposed. The Citra however, was straight off the bine! I dry hopped twice in the corny keg, I removed the first dry hop bag after 5 days and added the second. Obviously your water treatment is your own business, but I went for a fairly balanced chloride/sulfate addition on the calcium front.
"The Blood Of Revolution" OG 1.060 FG 1.017 Pale Ale Malt 59% Crystal 60L 26% Munich Malt 15% Mash at 65C 60 mins Green Bullet, 60 mins for 40 IBU Galaxy, 15 mins for 35 IBU Cascade, 2.5G/L 5 mins Cascade 2.5G/L Steep British Ale/Ringwood Yeast (WLP005) Citra Dry Hop 3G/L 5 days Citra Dry Hop 2G/L 3 days