I read that a brown ale was a good beer to brew for those new to all grain. I assume this is because the recipe can be very simple, you don't have to go crazy with hopping and the roasted malt can cover up any minor mistakes. I decided I would make a brown ale. However, since I always feel the need to to something different, I swapped out the roasted barley with some roasted buckwheat.
The buckwheat was roasted in muffin top
pans for 1.5hrs @ 400°F
The brewing process was almost flawless. My only problem was forgetting to preheat the mash tun and missing my desired temperature. Everything after that was a breeze. I let the beer sit in the primary bucket for 3 weeks and went right to bottling. I sampled some of the beer and I was not very impressed. The buckwheat seemed to give off a bit of a twang. Of course, knowing green beer never really tastes that great, I did not stress out too much. For lack of an official name, I wrote "Crap Ale" on each bottle cap. One month later, the homebrew club sampled a bottle and had good things to say. Ted (of tedbrews.com) said that it reminded him of a brown malt.
I really have enjoyed this beer. It's a little dryer than I planned, but it's refreshing. In some ways, it reminds me of Guinness. I think the tangyness of the buckwheat reminds me of the sour mash addition to Guinness. The color of the beer is a lighter than it appears in the photo above, so perhaps the compairison is also a bit visual. I'll definately give roasted buckwheat another try sometime.
Batch Size: 2.5 gallons
3 lbs Pale Malt
1 lbs Crystal - 20L
.5 lbs Roasted Buckwheat
.75 oz Fuggle, 4.5%, Leaf, 60 min.
.25 oz Fuggle, 4.5%, Leaf, 15 min.
Yeast: Safeale S-04
Brew Day Stats:
H2O/Grain: 1.25 qt/lb
Sach. Rest Temp/Time: 146°F/60min.
IBU: approx. 20
Ferment Temp: 76°F