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Siberian Tiger & Tigress – Baltic Porter

Born on Sun 9 March 2014:

With autumn and winter coming around the corner not to mention the Westgate Brewers Baltic Porter comp. in May I decided it was time to turn my hand to a style I have wanted to brew for a long time and one that would showcase Gladfield Malt in all its glory and pay respect to an endangered animal I much admire – the Siberian Tiger. Having watched a film on the flight home with Mazzy on a crazy Korean who camped out for 5 years to film Siberian Tigers only to see all of them shot over the course of his camping by poachers I thought who better to be the figure head for this wonderful style of Porter originally brewed with a lager yeast in cold conditions with high abv for a journey from London to the Baltic States.

Mining the wonderful world of the Tinternet I stumbled across BrewToad.com and a wealth of good recipes some of which recommended an Irish Ale Wyeast so why not break with brewing convention. I adapted, tweaked and put my own flavour on the grain bill and a moderate hop regime. Ingredients below:

Gladfield Malt Bill (Kg)

Hops:

  • Northern Brewer & Magnum
  • 25g Northern Brewer A/A 10.6% & 15g Magnum A/A 14.4% at start of boil
  • 15g Northern Brewer @Flame out

Yeast:

Adjuncts:

  • 2 x Vanilla beans (split) in secondary

Fermentation:

  • 18C

Sources: Brewtoad, Homebrew Handbook, Key concept in water treatment, The complete Joy of Homebrewing, Beer & Brewer

Mash:

Decided to try a step mash not that Gladfield Malt (fully modified) required it but more because I have been extremely unhappy with my mash results in the untrusty Crown Urn brew in a bag set up:

  1. Step 1: 30 mins @55 degrees Celsius
  2. Step 2: 30 mins @66 degrees Celsius
  3. Rest: 10 mins @66 C
  4. Step 4: Mash off @70C for 15 mins

Racking: to create a Siberian Tigress

Sun 16th March racked off 16L into a secondary fermenter and 5L into an Oak Barrel which had been presoaked with Victorian Muscat and was primed with 200g of Dark Belgium Candy Sugar. Upon tasting there was some nice roasted malt flavour and good body, hop tones and a mellow finish. My hope was this Tigress would be gentle but lethal just the same 🙂

Bottling

Bulk primed 500ml of boiling water with 160g of dark brown sugar and bottled off the Siberian Tiger. The Tigress was bottled a week later with just 12 bottles of this lethal she cat that will benefit from extended bottle conditioning.

Tasting

Been enjoying a few of these Tigers in May as the mercury drops and they are very morish 🙂 Have not tempted the Tigress but plan to showcase her in all her glory with a heavy lamb shank, rich red meat dish or a saucy chocolate dessert to round out her malty smooth character and muscat on oak charms. Just need to be careful as the Tigress will have a bite!

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