Thursday’s Brewday: Pale Ale

August 29, 2010

American pale ale is a style I like to play around with as it lets me experiment with hops while staying easily drinkable. On Thursday of this past week I brewed another of these, going with a Cascade/Galena mix for the hops. I’ve only used Galena once and wasn’t impressed, but I’m thinking that was more a recipe fail on my part than anything (that was the amber I made in the early spring that took me forever to drink). The more I smell Galena at the brewery, the more I’m coming to think it could be really nice if used properly.

In addition to trying out Galena hops again, I also decided that I’m going to play with the water chemistry of my batches from now on and put together a water profile to try for pale ales. This batch used gypsum to try to emphasize the hop bitterness and flavor.

This is also the second batch of beer I’ve made with my new fermentation temperature control method. There’s a plastic storage container half-filled with water in the basement that I put the fermenter in. Twice a day I put in a new one gallon milk jug of ice, and this has worked to keep the thermometer on the outside of the fermenter down around 64-66 degrees. That will keep the beer from breaking 70 degrees internally, which is exactly what I want.

American Pale Ale

Boil Volume: 7 gallons

Batch Volume: 5.5 gallons


  • 8.5 lb Pale malt
  • 1.0 lb Munich
  • 0.5 lb CaraRed


  • 0.75 oz Galena (Boiled for 60 minutes, 11% Alpha Acid)
  • 0.50 oz Galena (Boiled for 20 minutes)
  • 1.00 oz Cascade (Boiled for 10 minutes, 5.4% Alpha Acid)
  • 1.00 oz Cascade (Boiled for 5 minutes)
  • 1.00 oz Galena (End of the boil)

Mash Schedule:

Mash with 12.5 quarts of water at 150 degrees for 75 minutes.


Wyeast 1056 American Ale yeast

Water Additions:

  • 2 gm Chalk
  • 4 gm Gypsum
  • 2 gm Calcium Chloride

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