We have discussed the topic of having “house beers” in the past. These are beers that we have on tap on the regular throughout the year. As homebrewers, we have the ability to learn beer styles and brew them excellently, tweaking recipes to get them to be just right and to our liking. One of the beer styles that Mike wants as a part of his house is English Brown Ale. This post is a first of a series where Mike will brew this style until he gets it just right.

Vacay Brown Ale Recipe

Since he brewed this recipe during his annual holiday break, Mike is calling this beer his Vacay Brown Ale. Here’s the recipe:

68% Maris Otter Pale Malt
17% American 2-row Malt
4.3% Flaked Barley
4.3% Pale Chocolate Malt
4.3% Special Roast Malt
2.1% Extra Special Malt

1 ounce (28 g) of Challenger hops – boiled for 60 minutes
1 ounce (28 g) of East Kent Goldings hops – boiled for 10 minutes

1 packet of Lallemand LalBrew Windsor Ale Dry Yeast

Spring water with 1.5 g of calcium chloride and 1.5 g of calcium sulfate added

Fermented for 2 weeks at room temperature.
Original Gravity: 1.052
Final Gravity: 1.011
ABV: 5.5%

Our House Brown Ale Tasting Notes

First off, hats off to Mike for a crystal clear beer. The copper color really shines. It could be a little darker to wear the brown ale name better.

Remember, this is a House Brown Ale series. He can modify the color as a part of the process.

Secondly, the head is off white with a nice lacing on the glass. The aroma took a bit to get used to, but after a few sips, the malt presence is clear.

The flavor has a nice harmony of malts. We like the wheat toast note, and the lack of caramel notes.

For next time, Mike is going to play around with using chocolate malt instead of pail chocolate malt and maybe switch up the yeast.

We will have to see how the next iteration goes.