Batch 77: Harvest Amber Ale

The next in a series of pumpkin ales for the season, inspired by the impeccable Nepenthe Amber Ale recipe (adapted earlier this year to include MO as the base malt), and riding on the heels of the Pumpkin Dubbel that placed 3rd in the professional panel of the homebrew comp for the 2016 Baltimore Craft Beer Festival, and brewed to enter into this year’s (2018) BCBF Homebrew Competition, I present to you: the Harvest Amber Ale.

This is basically a re-brew of Nepenthe Amber Ale, adding caramelized pumpkin and (a very careful and small portion of) pumpkin spice 🙂

Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: Nottinghan
Yeast Starter: Two packets
Batch Size (Gallons): 11
Original Gravity: 1.061
Final Gravity: 
Boiling Time (Minutes): 60
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp):
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp):

18# Maris Otter
2# C40
1# Munich (light)
8oz C120
4oz Pale Chocolate

90oz Libby’s Pumpkin, caramelized at 350° for 75 minutes (1/2 in mash, 1/2 in boil)

initial mash temp was 146°. I decocted 2 cups of mash and re-added at 30 minutes, which raised the mash temp to 149°.

1oz Centennial – 60 min
1oz Columbus – 60 min
10z Amarillo – 10 min
1oz Centennial – 5 min
1oz Amarillo – whirlpool
2oz Cascade – whirlpool

3tsp pumpkin spice @ 10 min

1 whirlfloc tab @ 10 min

boiled for 60 minutes

yielded about 10 gallons spread between 2 carboys, but the second carboy seems to have gotten all of the sludge (!).

EDIT 10/1/18 am: HAPPY YEAST! yeasties are chugging away at 74°. I put in blow-out tubes in anticipation of a rager. The glass 6gal carboy had all of the sludge (looks like ~1/2 sludge) and has a nice calm krausen. The big mouth plastic carboy had almost all beer, and is raging (hence, blow-out tube).

UPDATE 10/6/18: Tastes soooo good, very subtle spice profile and a very malty/biscuity/warm-bready backbone that hits in the middle of the taste and lingers. FG: 1.007 (7.3% ABV). Almost want to pull and keg it right now, but there is a subtle and indescribable off-flavor on the nose and I want to see if the yeast will figure that out. Also, this recipe included the same ratio of spice to beer as the Pumpkin Dubbel, but the dubbel had a more prominent spice profile. This strongly suggests that indeed using Belgian Ale yeast in the dubbel had the desired effect of adding/accentuating/augmenting the spice profile. Might add a bit more spice next time (or maybe consider splitting the next batch and fermenting half on Notty or Chico, half on a Dubbel yeast.