I have been growing my own hops for three years now with varying degrees of success. Before we moved to Alki beach they did very well and I even had a harvest the first year (they usually need a year to acclimate to their environment, producing the second year). Since moving to Alki my plants have produced, however, the yields have been much smaller than they were that first year. It can get very windy where we are situated and I’m not sure if the salty sea air has a detrimental effect on their growth. Regardless, I have been able to use those hops that do endure in partial fresh hop homebrews.
Last fall Gregory and I used my homegrown Willamette hops in our funkified take on an old standard. We began with a basic English mild recipe and fermented it with White Labs WLP013 London Ale and White Labs WLP645 Brettanomyces Claussenii which resulted in a great fruity beer with light funk and a crisp dry finish. Here’s our recipe:
Brett’s A Mild Dude — Partial Fresh Hop English Style Mild With Brettanomyces
Batch Size (Gal): 5.5
Total Grain (Lbs): 8.875
Anticipated OG: 1.044
Anticipated SRM: 21.0
Anticipated IBU: 23.0
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75%
Wort Boil Time: 60 Minutes
67% – 6.0 Lbs. Maris Otter Ale Malt
08% – 0.75 Lbs. British Crystal 50-60L
08% – 0.75 Lbs. Brown Malt
05% – 0.50 Lbs. Flaked Oats
05% – 0.50 Lbs. British Crystal 135-165L
02% – 0.25 Lbs. American Chocolate
01% – 0.125 Lbs. Black Malt
1.50 oz. Bramling Cross (Pellet, 6.0% AA) @ 30 min.
0.10 0z. Fresh Hop Homegrown Willamette (Whole Cone, 5.0% AA) @ 1 min.
1.00 Whirlfloc @ 15 min.
1.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient @ 15 min.
White Labs WLP013 London Ale (starter)
White Labs WLP645 Brettanomyces Claussenii
1.00 tsp Calcium Chloride
1.00 tsp Gypsum
Sacch. Rest – 60 min @ 153F
Mashout – 10 min @ 170F
09.01.14 – Made a stir-plate 1.5L starter with 1 White Labs WLP013 London Ale vial. Brewtoad suggests 170 billion cells to ferment 5.5 gal. Cold crashed and decanted morning of brew day.
Brewed 09.03.14 with Gregory
09.03.14 – Chilled wort to 65F before pitching yeast starter.
09.05.14 – Vigorous fermentation, temperature holding steady @ 60-65F. Fermented at this temp. for 1 week.
09.10.14 – Put fermentor onto brewbelt for 15 days.
09.25.14 – Transferred mild to secondary.
10.23.14 – Kegged and carbonated mild @ 1.65 volumes CO2.
This beer turned out great. Notes of biscuit, nuts, and chocolate dominate the palate with vinous hints and some dry fruitiness from the Brett. Finishes dry and crisp, with a very short finish — refreshing.
Calculated OG: 1.045
Calculated FG: 1.012
Approx. ABV: 4.3%