What. A. Brew. Day. Literally an hour after I was telling my fiance how much I'm enjoying brewing indoors on my new electric system, the power goes out. Fantastic. Thankfully it didn't catch me at too inconvenient time during the brew day, but what a pain in the ass. I suppose I should talk about the beer before I get too far into my mishaps. I'm brewing a simplified version of the Honey Blonde I've brewed in the past. I'm switching to a single hop (Centennial), and only using a single specialty malt (C10). The one thing I always liked about that beer was the cracker-y/biscuit-y character that it had, so I changed 30% of the base malt to Marris Otter, to bring some of that character back. Other than those changes, it's the same beer.

This weekend there have been some big thunderstorms and dust storms (haboobs) in the evenings. On Saturday, our power was out for a couple hours in the afternoon, but it came back on around 5. Immediately following that was a 5 story high dust storm, and around 1" of rain. My fiance and I assumed there were some lines down in the area, or a transformer had blown. So without hesitation, I decided to brew on Sunday afternoon, what are the odds of that power going out at the same time two days in a row? Well apparently, the odds are pretty f'ing good. 45 minutes into the mash, whooooom. I starred at the mash tun for a couple minutes, deciding what I wanted to do. Thankfully I had already heated my sparge water, so I fly sparged the old-fashion way, with gravity. I collected all the wort in the kettle, and put a lid on until the power came back. Two full hours later the power come back. I start heating the kettle, and right as I hit 205*, whooooom. The power is out again. By now it's dinner time, so we get a bite to eat, and by the time we get home, the power is back for good. Boiled the beer for 60 minutes, chilled down to 64, and pitched a pack of re-hydrated US-05. That wrapped up my six hour brew day, that involved 3.5 hours of actually brewing.

Brewed: 07-22-12
Kegged: 08-14-12
FG: 1.006
ABV: 5.8%
IBU: 20
6 Gallons

7lbs 2-Row
3lbs Marris Otter
8oz Crystal 10
Mash @ 151*
0.5oz Centennial @ 60
0.25oz Centennial @ 20
0.25oz Centennial @ 0
US-05 @ 62*

Ok, holy crap this beer dried out. I was expecting 1.010, and it finished at 1.006. The question is: Did this batch need to be mashed around 154-155*, or did the extended rest after sparging increase the fermentability of  wort? Anyway, of all the beers to finish dry, a blonde ale is the best case scenario, other than the fact it's now a 5.8% beer. It ended up tasting really nice. Soft bready malt aroma with a pinch of citrus. The flavor is very similar bread-like malt flavor, with a very balanced hop bitterness. It finishes super clean. The alcohol content is extremely well cloaked, enough that this beer could definitely get you in trouble. Which is funny because.....

This keg of beer is destined for a weightlifting open at my Crossfit Box, East Valley Crossfit, where I'm sure it won't last long. Due to the fact this beer goes down as easy as a light lager, I'm curious to see how floored everyone is by the end of the afternoon.


  1. I'm actually brewing this one as I type, (currently mashing) I decided to change the malt around a little bit to just use 8 oz C20 (No C10 at my LHBS) and 10 lbs of Maris Otter (because I just bought a 55lb bag of it). I am mashing it at 154 degrees, for 60 minutes.

    I'll let you know how it turns out, because I don't plan to do the rest after mashing unless my propane tank runs out and I have to go to the store to exchange it. I'm kind of excited for this, as people have been complaining about my IPA heavy kegerator.

    I am leaving the hops as well as the hop schedule the same as the recipe, as well as the fermentation temperatures.

    1. Hopefully you like it! It's a pretty straight forward, drinkable blonde ale, so it sound go over well with a crowd.

      Let me know how it turns out.

    2. It turned out magically delicious... I ended up making 13 gallons of the blonde base and split it up making a blonde, honey strawberry and a honey mango. They all turned out fantastic, great clarity and character, thanks for this versatile base! It is my new go to

    3. Oh yeah mine ended up at 1.008 FG. I've had three, can't taste the alcohol, but it's hitting me... probably because it's time to eat and it's a scorcher out here this week in the 100's. (East cost that's a big deal). Also congrats and have fun at your wedding, or at least try to between thanking everyone and saying goodbyes

    4. Glad it turned out well! We were actually back on the East Coast this past weekend for a Wedding, so I was enjoying that heat wave with you.

      Thanks btw, just a couple more short months.

    5. So I just made it again, but this time I did 5 days Grain to beer, parents surprised us with coming into town and I had just kicked the keg, I swapped out WLP001 for the US-05. It still turned out wicked good. Love this recipe!

  2. Hey bud, I've noticed you start your fermentations extremely low, is this simply to reduce flavors? Thanks.

    1. I like my fermentation profiles clean. Plus, keep in mind, when I set my fermentation fridge at 62F, that's the low end. It allows a 1.5* range, and the beer spends most of the time at the higher end of that range (63-63.5). Then consider it's a temp probe taped to the side of a plastic fermenter. The beer inside is usually about 1 degree warmer.

      So 62 on my controller is really about 64-65 in reality. I've just found that works well for me.


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