Imperial Pumpkin Ale

IMG_0446This batch was batch made for 2014 Oktoberfest – unfortunately I’m just now getting around to posting! I played around with a few ideas for a pumpkin ale. First, I started out with a fairly simple recipe – 2 to 3 malts, small amount of hops. Got bored with it.  Started layering in different malts and wound up with something fairly complex, but delicious sounding. Originally I had included 3 lb of Carabrown malt in the grist, but my LHBS was out, so I subbed in 2 lb of special roast and 1 lb of Crystal 80 to compensate.

  • 11.4 lb Mild malt (Muntons)
  • 11.4 lb Munich dark (10L, Weyermann)
  • 2 lb Special Roast (Briess)
  • 2.6 lb Flaked Oats (Quaker minute oats)
  • 1 lb Crystal 80 (Briess)
  • 0.6 lb Dark Crystal 120 (Muntons)
  • 0.6 lb Chocolate malt (Muntons)
  • 0.3 lb Roasted Barley (Muntons)
  • 1 oz Kent Goldings @ 60 min
  • 1 oz Williamette @ 60, 45, 30, and 15 min
  • 2 packs WYeast 1450 Denny’s Favorite (1 pack in 2L starter for 1st [plastic bucket], and 1 pack (no starter) + WLP001 in 2nd carboy [glass carboy])

// Mash-in 1.33 qt/lb  at 152 for 60 minutes, raise to 170 and sparge to collect 13.5 gal 1.060 wort. Boil 90 minutes, chill to 80 and collect 10.5 gal 1.070 wort. Pitch starter. //

Water profile:  3 g gypsum, 4 g CaCl2, 6.3 g chalk in mash to hit pH of 5.4. 2.1 g gypsum, 2.8 g CaCl2 in batch sparge.

The first runnings of the mash was delicious… bold and deep roast / caramel flavors with hints of coffee.

First Runnings

First Runnings

UPDATE (9/10/14): Bubbling slowed, gravity down to 1022 in both carboys. big malt flavors but still very yeasty and cloudy. Gave both carboys a good shake and fermentation kicked back up significantly. I gave both carboys a good 3 weeks in the primary to let the finish out, but it never really got below 1020. Transferred both beers to secondaries; one with 1 oz of oak chips (soaked in Jameson for 2 days prior), and the other with 1/4 teaspoon each allspice, ground clove, nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract. Let both carboys sit for 3 weeks, then added an additional 1/4 rounded tsp each cinnamon & nutmeg to the spiced keg since the flavors had kinda faded a bit (but they’re still very nicely in the background!).


This recipe produced two really big and flavorful beers – I never got around to writing a proper review of these because they were kicked so quickly at the Oktoberfest party. The pumpkin ale was enjoyed thoroughly by all – the level of spicing was just right in my opinion. The oaked cask version was rich and smooth; I think it could have used a little more oak flavor, but it stood well as a strong brown ale with just a touch of oak. I used the 3rd runnings of this beer and some home-grown hops to make an American bitter –  check it out!




Leave a comment

Filed under All-grain, Balanced, Brown, Pumpkin

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s