On the same day we bottled the ‘Nookie, we got going on our third beer, the Houblonmonstre Tripel IPA kit from Northern Brewer. They describe the kit like this:
Once upon a time a poor homebrewer was lamenting the lack of time that the modern world allowed him for his hobby. He had the ingredients for a batch of Tripel and a batch of IPA, but the demands of home and work life were such that he had no opportunity to brew them, and so he cried himself to sleep. While he slept, a collective of Ardennes Forest Beer Gnomes (Houblonmonstres, in Flemish) came into his house and took pity on the poor homebrewer. They decided they’d brew his beer for him. Unfortunately, the Gnomes were already three sheets when they broke into his home, and so they combined the ingredients for the two batches. This recipe is the result of their drunken meddling: an elegant and pale strong abbey ale carpet-bombed with American and continental hops. You’re going to have to do the brewing yourself, though.
Pretty cool to picture a bunch of drunken gnomes making beer, especially since this is a tribute to Houblon Chouffe, a very tasty and strong beer. Liles and his wife Brandi, however, thought that a strong Belgian should pay tribute to the most famous strong Belgian of all, which is why we are calling it:
Pretty sexy, huh? This is, by far, our biggest beer, weighing in at an OG of 1.082. Here’s how it unfolded:
After recovering from our awesome lunch, we set up in Jeff’s garage to start the boil. The API Lepirt has several hop additions along with a lot of late sugar additions, so it played out quite a bit differently than our first two beers. There were no specialty grains to steep, so once we got our water up to a boil, we added 3.15 lbs of Pilsen malt syrup and 1 oz of Yakima Magnum hops. No boilover this time. With 15 minutes left in our one hour boil, we added 1 oz each of Cascade and Saaz hops along with 6 lbs more of the Pilsen malt syrup. With 5 minutes left, we added more Cascade and Saaz. Then at burnoff, we added two pounds of corn sugar.
All of this sugar should translate into lots of alcohol if the fermentation goes well. We pitched the Wyeast 3522 Belgian Ardennes yeast after cooling and aerating the wort. It’s currently in its second week of primary fermentation and I’m thinking that we’ll give it at least one more week before racking to secondary. I’m wondering whether or not we will want to re-pitch at that point. I guess it all depends on the taste/gravity when we rack it.
Today we will finally get a chance to taste our ‘Nookie IPA! I’m a bit nervous to see how it turns out. I’ll detail it in my next post.