2010 Pumpkin Ale

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.

Pumpkin Preparation:
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.

Merry Christmas!

1 thought on “2010 Pumpkin Ale”

  1. I love your roastiness. It’s my favorite. Also, you forgot to mention the meticulous spice grating and pervasive spice confusion that gives and air of domesticity to this brew.

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