50/50 Palisade — tasting

50/50 Palisade

For the recipe on this beer, please look here.

A few notes on the fermentation and handling of this beer.  It was in the primary for 18 days.  I set the temperature to 65F for 7 days, then upped it to 66F for another 7 days, before shutting off the heat and letting it drop to the ambient of 61F for 4 days.  I then kegged it, and force carbonated it.  It finished at a gravity of 1.010, giving me a 5.2% abv beer.  The IBU/OG ratio was 0.74, putting it much more on the bitter side, but it ended up drier then I expected, with a IBU/FG ratio of  3.6.  The attenuation was 79.4%, which was higher then I expected.  I am not sure if that is a product of the HERMs system I used to brew it, but I may mash hotter with this in the future.  On to the tasting.

Appearance:  Hazy dirty orange, it has a nice head that hangs on.

Aroma:  Spicy, floral hop aroma, which makes me think more of a European hop.  There is no citrus like many American hops, this is more along the lines of a noble German hop mixed with Goldings.  Hard to describe, but not overpowering.  I really don’t get any esters I can attribute to the yeast, but hard to tell with the hop aroma

Taste:  Toasty malty flavor.  It is fairly crisp, almost lager like, with a little bit of apple, but again, I am not sure if that is not the hop vs the yeast.  Overall, the esters are pretty clean, and there is a nice hop bitterness at the end, very smooth.  The beer is dry, goes down pretty easily.

Critique — well, I set out to make a beer that was a bit maltier but it attenuated more then I expected.  That being said, it is easy drinking.  The malt is there, but not sweet like caramel, and has more of a toasty flavor to it from the Munich malt.  I think this would make a very nice base for a brown ale, with a touch of  caramel and some light chocolate for more nutty/roasty flavors.  It is fairly bitter, but not in a hit you over the head way.  It leave a nice dry, bitterness at the end.  The yeast was pretty clean, which is what I expected, but nice to see my impressions of WLP 028 validated.  It is not a complex beer, pretty straight forward, but will go down easily with the summer weather.  I also learned that Palisade maybe a pretty versatile hop, but I think I would use it in combination with other hops, as it does not have a strong presence on its own, but I can see it playing well with others for complexity, kind of like adding vanilla extract to a recipe.

2 Responses

  1. Sounds great for the summer. I haven’t used WLP 028 before. I’ve been planning to make a Scottish ale for some time now, but it sounds like WLP 028 works pretty well in a dry beer too. Would you use it again in a beer this dry?

    • I think it is a pretty clean yeast as far as ale strains go, and yes, I would use it again. According to White Labs, the Attenuation of this yeast is 70-75%, but I think attenuation is more a product of your wort production and your flocculation. If you mash lower and longer, and use a yeast that is more of a medium floc vs high, you are going to get a drier beer. That likely has more impact then the attenuation range the labs give. My next step is to compare it to the standard of clean ale strains, WY 1056. I am going to do a side by side with the washings of WLP028 from this batch in the near future to compare hop expression and ester production. I am looking for a “clean” ale strain to use going forward, and this looks like a nice chance to do a head to head and see which I prefer.

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