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July 26, 2009

dunkel + gonzo

after our last brewday we had a couple of fat yeast cakes and we were looking for a way to use them. it seemed a logical choice to take the weizen cake (from our first single decoction) and amp it up for a double-decocted dunkel - and while we're at it, why not add a bunch of rye and make it a dunkelroggenweizen?

since eric was off and running with his dunkelroggenweizen, i thought it would be a good time to bust out a recipe i've had for a while: a clone of one of my favourite beers, flying dog's gonzo imperial porter. i haven't been able to get my hands on their VSS yeast strain from wyeast, but figured the london iii strain that we used in the esb would work pretty well in its place. a little tweaking and the gonzo recipe was done.

there was only one problem with this plan - i didn't have anywhere near enough cascade for the porter, and i couldn't find any rice hulls for the dunkel. after a bit of a scramble i found mashing heads, an online homebrew shop out of london, ON. Steve was super helpful, rushing the order out the next day and even finding all the cascade i needed for the gonzo recipe! thanks guys! i know they'll be getting more of my business in the future.

eric firing up the burners, likely warming up some strike water, and jp looking on.

radical brewing, and my simplified step-by-step notes based on their description of the sweimaischverfahren - that's a double decoction mash for those not up on their german.

all hands on deck. eric and jp working the mash for the dunkel while i work on the porter.

me rockin' a new bull & bush tshirt.

vorlauf done on the porter and collection started. damn that shit was black!

the joy of decoctions: non-stop stirring for hours on end. we setup a char beside the burner to make it a little easier. here's eric taking a shift.

and now jp's turn. we really gotta say thanks to jp. we threw all sorts of brewmonkey chores at him - including a hefty portion of stirring the decoction - and he kept at it. i'm sure our arms would have fallen off if not for the extra help.

i think this was the dunkel after adding in some rice hulls to make sparging easier. we did that just before bringing it to mash out.

me throwing out the horns. i was pretty excited at how the porter was progressing.

the final bit of stirring on the second decoction step. you can really see how much it had darkened in the first shot.

boil hops for the porter. 10oz in the boil, including 6oz of cascade at flameout. and that's before the 8oz of cascade that'll go in as dry hops.

eric and jp giving the dunkel its final bump to mash out temperature.

porter approaching a boil.

mmmm, dunkelroggenweizen.

a good look at the dunkel after getting it to mash out temperature.

after getting the decoction out of the way eric decided it was time to light up a cigar, a recent acquisition as part of the gentlemen's club BIF.

both beers boiling away. we had to move them inside once the rain started coming down more steadily.

eric giving the horns for our russian imperial stout. eric corked+caged his half. mine was still sitting in secondary waiting for me to do something with it.

yeah, it looks pretty badass.

porter going into the fermenter.

i guess at this point we got busy with the final cleanup and didn't take a final picture of the dunkel. the brewday finished up just fine, and the decoction was a success. would you have expected any less?

Posted by grub at July 26, 2009 10:42 AM

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