Brew 5 Orange American Wheat 3

Yesterday was my fifth brew and my third in my series of tests to find the best way to add orange flavor to wheat beers.  It was my standard American Wheat brew but I am adding sweet orange peels in secondary.  I boiled for 30 minutes as usual and used my wort chiller to bring down my wort to 75 degrees F before adding the yeast.  Even with the wort chiller running ice water through the wort I still had time to go for an hour run before I was ready to add my yeast.  I took a specific gravity of 1.040 at 75 degrees so I should be able to get a 4% ABV which is a little lower than my last brew but still not something I am disappointed with.

This will be my last brew before the semester ends so I don’t have to worry about coming back down to bottle over the summer.  I plan on moving to a full grain set up over the summer to give me more control over my brews and to really get into brewing and the science behind it.

Orange American Wheat 3

Extract: 2 cans wheat extract

Yeast: WL300 hefewiezen

Hop: US Hallertau

Flavor: Sweet orange peel Secondary

 

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Belated Bottling and Secondary

Thursday I realized as I got ready to bottle that I was out of bottle caps.  So I had to put off bottling until last night.  I bottled my first Orange Wheat beer and am very excited to try it in a few weeks.  This is the first brew I did not use a prepackaged bag of priming sugar but measured out sugar cane to prime with. I used two thirds of a cup of cane sugar boiled in one cup of water for my five gallons of brew.  Ideally this should give me about 2.6 Volumes of CO2.  I took a SP of 1.010 at 68 degrees before I added my priming sugar to my Orange American Wheat which should give me an abv of 5.1%.  I got just over 50 bottles from this brew and hopefully it will turn out with a nice sweet orange flavor.

To clean and cap my bottles I talked my lady friend into helping.  She does not like beer in the slightest but she knows I love to brew so she wanted to help. You know you found a good girl when she will volunteer to help clean and cap your bottles, two of my least favorite things in brewing.

After I bottled my Orange American Wheat I moved my second orange brew, my Orange Wheat, to secondary.  I took a SP of 1.010 at 68 degrees so this brew should have around 4% abv.  This is a lower abv but it will help me determine when and how I will like to add my orange flavoring.  In another 12 days I plan to bottle this batch, which will be my second to last brew before the semester is over.

Brew 4 Orange Wheat

Today I brewed my fourth brew, a wheat beer with orange zest.  This was my second non-kit brew and I am starting to experiment with flavors and ingredients.  I used a can of wheat extract and a can of light extract, and used saaz hops for the first time today.  I added orange zest in the last 5 minutes of boil to compare to adding peels in primary like in my last brew. I used the white lab hefeweizen ale yeast WLP300 again as it seems to be working nicely in my last brew, but this time I remember to take it out of the fridge four hours before adding it to the wort like the bottle suggests.

Last night I built a wort chiller using 10 feet of 3/8 OD soft copper tubing and two 5 feet pieces of 3/8 ID food grade tubing.  I was hoping I could get the wort chiller started with my auto siphon and pull ice water from a bucket to chill the brew but the suction would not keep the water flowing so I had to continuously pump the auto siphon.  I chilled the brew to 80 degrees and took a specific gravity of 1.040 before I added my yeast.

I have my preferred airlock in use on my first orange wheat while it is in secondary.  This caused me a bit of dismay because I had to use my 3-piece airlock which I have never used before but hopefully I have it in place right and it will not cause a problem for me.  The beer closet currently had over 15 gallons of homebrew in it before I removed the case of German light.  So much homebrew would make anyone smile.

Orange Wheat Transfer to Secondary

Today I took a break from studying and transferred my third brew to secondary after a week of primary.  My brew had orange peels in primary that I did not transfer to secondary.  This is the darkest brew I have had so far which is odd because it is almost the same recipe as my first brew.  The brew still had bubbles coming out of my air lock as recently as this morning which is a testament to the white lab yeast I would have to think because my past brews stop bubbling after around three days of primary.  As you can see in the image below my specific gravity was around 1.010 at 68 degrees before I transferred it to secondary.  Assuming the specific gravity does not change in the next two weeks that should give me around a 5% ABV, possibly closer to 6% according to some calculators.  In just over a month I hope to be enjoying my first non kit brew and also my first flavored beer.