Monday, 17 October 2011

Brewday - Citra Pale Ale 14/10/2011

There’s nothing worse than having a shortage of beer in the house when there’s a ten gallon brewery sitting in the garage.

To be fair, the shortage was self-inflicted when I decided life was too short for mediocre beer. And my last two brews were definitely no better than mediocre.

The Green Bullet Gold was an odd beer. The main problem with it was that I used some old hops I had in the bottom of the freezer. Not only had they had been in there a while, they were given free of charge from a brewery in the first place, so they had definitely lost a sheadload of Alpha.

In the brew prior to that one, I was experimenting with amber malt. I’d used it before in beers I hadn’t liked and gave it one last chance.  It won’t get another. 

I decided to ditch all the amber beer and all the bottled GBG. For some reason the kegged version wasn’t so bad, so I’ve been surviving on that.

The upshot was that I needed more beer. The Best Bitter has been bottled but will need time to condition, so in the interim I decided to get another brew on the go to replenish stocks. 

Rather than devise a new recipe, I reached for my brewnotes for the Citra Pale Ale. This took third at the UK National Hombrew Competition and is exactly the sort of ale I needed in reserve. An easy drinking, sunshine number with a little hoppy bite at the death.

It was brewed on Friday – 50 litres at an original gravity of 1.042. My last batch fermented down to 1.012, giving an ABV of 3.9%. Exactly the sort of beer you can chuck down your neck when a thirst needs quenching.

 The familiar sight of golden wort 

I realise I’m lacking something a bit stronger with the winter approaching and I aim to put that right on my next brewday - using homegrown hops.

I’ve also got a dark winter ale to get sorted. For that pair I’ll probably just brew 5 gallon batches. Recipe and brewday notes to follow when I can find some time to fire up the brewery again. 


  1. I know what you mean about amber malt as I'm generally not keen, but I was surprised how good it was when I copied the Courage Imperial Russian Stout recipe which has loads of it.

  2. that's some fine looking , clear-as-a-bell wort there!