Wow, can it really be July already? It has been a while since I brewed a batch of beer, and I’ve really been looking forward to using one of our warm Bonny Doon summer afternoons to do so. An added bonus is that this summer will be incredibly busy for me, which makes waiting for beer to ferment much easier. In order to get in the brewing mood, I thought I’d post about some beers I’ve made.

The first beer I brewed came without a real recipe. I walked into our local homebrew store and the employee helped me throw together what he thought would be a good hoppy IPA. It came out less hoppy than planned, with less alcohol than a typical IPA from the States, resembling a traditional pale ale moreso than an IPA. I decided this hybrid style should be called an “American Indian” Pale Ale, and named it Ishi, after the Yahi Indian who lived at UC Berkeley in the early 1900s. The label and recipe are below. (*Ishi was featured on Santa Cruz’s finest photoblog, Harmless Neighborhood Eccentric.)

ISHI American Indian Pale Ale
1 lb Gambrinus Munich Malt
1 lb Great Western Crystal 15ºL
6 lb Pale Dry Malt Extract
Hop boil:
60: 1 oz American summit
30: 1 oz American summit
20: 1 oz American summit, 1/2 tsp Irish Moss (Chondrus crispus)
5: 2 oz NZ Hallertaur
Dry: 2 oz American Summit
White Labs San Diego Super Yeast

1. Heat 5 gallons water to ~160ºF (Not over 180ºF)
2. Steep grains for 15-20 mins (did closer to 20 minutes)
3. Remove grains, bring to a boil (took 15-20 min); kill heat
4. Add malt extract and dissolve completely (took ~15 min)
5. Bring back to a boil (10-15 min)
6. Once boiling, start countdown and begin adding hops according to boiling schedule
(Add coil along with hops and moss with 20 min remaining.)
7. Cool to 65-75ºF (30-45 min)
8. Transfer to primary fermenter (~10 min)
9. Aerate and add yeast.

Initial gravity: 1.056 at 70-72ºF
Final gravity: 1.010 at 70ºF