Saturday, 24 May 2014

Brew Day: Table Beer II

Table Beer IIThis is a beer I brewed last weekend, before the grain from the group buy arrived.  Its another attempt at a table beer---a refreshing, low-alcohol beer for everyday consumption.  Since J and I both teach and/or study most days, we need to be fairly clear-headed, which means being careful about how many beers we have in a night (even with the low-alcohol beers I normally brew).  I’d like to come up with one or two recipes for table beers that we could always have on hand: one with American hops for J, and one with European varieties for me.  Table Beer I was an attempt at the first; this is an attempt at the second.

Its loosely inspired by Jester King’s Le Petit Prince, though based more on the description of the beer than any real familiarity with it.  I had a bottle a year or two ago, but I don’t remember anything much about it.  It would have been made before the brewery incorporated their house culture of wild yeasts and LAB into all their beers, so its possible that the current iteration of the beer tastes different anyway.  J brought me back a bottle of Noble King from Houston last time she visited, and the souring bacteria and brettanomyces from the house culture were very evident in the flavour profile (it had a lovely lemony tartness, but some of the other flavours were a little strange).

Anyway, this isn’t really an attempt at a clone, but the recipe probably ended up being pretty similar to the one for Le Petit Prince.  I’ve listened to the Brewing Network interview with Ron and Jeff quite a few times, and I also watched this video---in which Jeff discusses recipe formulations---right about the time I came up with the grist and hops (warning: the video cuts out at some key points).  As a result I think the recipe is very similar, if not identical, to the one they use.  I’m relying on the French Saison yeast (WY3711) to dry the beer out completely, but also to give some mouth-feel to the finished product with the glycerol it produces.  The beer will also get a large dry-hop of Saaz in a week or two (Jeff says they dry hop at about 1lb per barrel, which works out at around 40-50g for my batch size).  As usual, the beer is also doing double-duty as a large starter for some other projects I have planned with this yeast.

Update: Tasting Notes.


Measured O.G. 1.024
Measured F.G. 1.000
ABV. 3.0%
Mash: 149°F
84.7% Pilsner
13.2% Wheat Malt
2.0% Medium Crystal      
EKG 60 min 11.8 IBUs (10g@ 5.9%)
EKG 10 min 3.5 IBUs (15g@ 5.9%)
Saaz 10 min 1.2 IBUs (10g@2.9%)
EKG 0 min 0.0 IBUs (15g@5.9%)
Saaz 0 min 0.0 IBUs (10g@2.9%)
Saaz Dry Hop (40g@2.9%)
Wyeast French Saison (3711)



  1. I'm really interested in hearing how this beer comes out. I've been trying to figure out the best way to make as close to an NA beer as I can. This seems like a reasonable start at that. Thanks,

    1. Thanks Aaron. You can get some good ideas for low-alcohol beers in this thread on HBT: