Back in October I was looking for something to brew at an upcoming homebrew get together. The two pumpkins in our kitchen were sitting their looking as if they needed a purpose so I decided to use them.
Most pumpkin ales that I’ve had just don’t seem to be the right color to me. I think a fall ale should be somewhere in the dark brown to black category. This one definitely turned out dark. I probably went a little bit overboard but it’s my beer. You can make yours lighter if you want to.
Here’s the recipe:
10 lbs 2 Row Barley
1 lb 60 L Crystal
.5 lb Black Malt
.5 lb Chocolate Malt
2 Bowling ball sized pie pumpkins (I never bothered to weigh them)
4 Cinnamon sticks at 60
3 Nutmegs at 60
6 Allspice at 60
1 Oz Cascade Hops at 60
1 Tsp Gypsum at 60
1 Oz Cascade Hops at 20
1 Tsp Irish Moss at 10
1 Tsp Yeast Nutrient at 10
1 Oz Cascade Hops at flame out
White Labs California Ale Yeast
I batch sparge so I scaled the grains up by 1.15…a number I got from a book that seems to work. =)
The beer spent about two weeks in primary and three in secondary before priming with 3/4 cup of corn sugar and bottling. Two weeks later the carbonation was nice and I was serving it at a Christmas party.
I quartered the pumpkins, sprinkled them with cinnamon, allspice, and nutmeg and then baked them until they were soft and the skins were easy to peel off. I then cubed them up and set them aside for the mash.
Things I did wrong:
My mash temperature was a little too cool. I have a copper manifold in my mash ton and I need to remember that it takes more warm water to preheat it than I think it should. I did a conversion test though and things were fine.
Also, I’d probably half the black and chocolate malt next time. This beer turned out dark. I mean really dark. It fools you though because the it’s not a heavy beer. It’s just really…really dark.
All in all I’m happy with the beer. You get just a little bit of pumpkin flavor and I think the little bit of roastiness is nice. I think it’s best to let it warm just a bit before drinking.