Mash & Sparge
1. Add all grains to strike water and mix to achieve a uniform temperature of 148°F. Rest the mash at this temperature for 60 – 90 minutes. While the mash rests, collect and heat sparge water.
2. When the mash rest is complete, heat it to 170°F for mashout.
3. Sparge and collect the wort in the boil kettle.
1. Bring the wort to a boil. Add 2 oz. Saaz hops and boil for 60 minutes.
2. Add the remaining 1 oz. Saaz hops 30 minutes before the end of the boil.
3. Cool it!
Fermentation and beyond
1. Transfer the cooled wort to a sanitized fermenter, aerate well, and pitch yeast.
2. Aim for a fermentation temperature somewhere between 65°-75°F; adjust as needed to suit your chosen yeast strain.
3. Two to three days after fermentation starts in earnest – CO2 through the airlock, krausen on the beer – add the honey. Soak the container in a pan of warm water to make sure the honey is liquified and easily pourable, then remove the lid or stopper from the fermenter and pour in the honey. Re-seal and swirl gently to mix. Expect renewed fermentation – it may be slower than before.
4. Depending on the yeast strain and termperature, primary fermentation should be complete in about 14 days. Use a hydrometer, monitor the gravity, and don’t rush it. We’d like to get Final Gravity as close to 1.012 or so as possible.
5. Rack to a secondary fermenter for a couple weeks of conditioning and clarification, then package. Skip a long secondary and use the carboy space for something else. The monks bottle-age it, and so can we.
6. Bottle-conditioning is the traditional method for Tripel, and it definitely looks handsome – no shame in putting this in a corny keg, though. If we’re careful about avoiding oxygen pickup and store it cool and out of the light, this beer will keep for years.
Until next time: drink it like you brewed it. Cheers!
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