I’ve gone and stumbled upon something wonderful. I wanted to switch away from the rash of darker beers I had been making and decided to do so gradually by making a mid color beer. I settled on an Irish red. Of course, I can’t leave it at that. I added cherry.
It’s three weeks later and I cracked one open to judge its progress. I was not sorry. The color is absolutely gorgeous and the taste is more so. The tart cherries lend a wonderful lightness that sits on your tongue for a few minutes before releasing its flavor. Mmmmm. Quite delicious. This is one of my favorites by far.
Immortality – A Cherry Irish Ale
Calories: 180 +
5 lbs. – LIght LME 5°L
1lb. – Crystal 10°L
.5 lb. – Flaked Barley
1 lb. – Marris Otter
.1 lb. – Roasted Barley
.6 oz. – Willamette (4.8% a @ 50 min)
.75 oz. – Kent Goldings (4.4% a @ 30 min)
WLP004 Irish Ale yeast (make a starter yeast a few days in advance)
20 oz. – Tart is Smart Cherry Concentrate
Steep grains in 6 quarts of water @ 155° F for 60 minutes. Rinse grains with 4 gallons of hot water (170° F). Stir in LME, stirring as not to scorch extract. Bring kettle volume to 5.5 gallons. Bring to a boil (don’t boil over). Add Willamette at 50 minutes and Goldings at 30 minutes. At end of timer, remove all hops and cool wort to 70 – 75°F. Gently stir in cherry concentrate. This would be a good time to take your original gravity reading. Aerate the wort and pitch yeast. Then aerate the wort again. Insert airlock and ferment at 70°F for 7 days. Raise the temperature to 75°F for 7 days (diacetyl rest). Next, do a cold crash for 3 days (approx 50°F). Transfer to a secondary and continue fermenting another 3 – 5 days. Rack to a bottling bucket. This would be a good time to take your final gravity reading. Prime with 4 oz. of corn sugar and bottle. Condition for roughly 10 – 14 days and enjoy.