Red Oak mash-in

This morning I mashed in at 10 am to an overcast sky at roughly 40F. Things are going smoothly so far as recycling trucks go by picking up the waste of the past few days. I’m praying that the rain will hold off for another 2 hours, and that I don’t slip on the wet birch leaves on the deck as I carry hot pots of water out to top off the hot liquor tank.

Today I’m brewing a fairly simple amber ale. It’s just 2-row and Crystal 60 and 80, with 1.5 oz of hops. I’m hoping to keep the flavor simple since I’m going to try and oak chip the beer in secondary with bourbon soaked toasted red oak chips. The bourbon is supposedly to “sanitize” the chips (blocks weren’t available) but I’m actually hoping to recreate a bourbon barrel flavor. I probably should have tried this with a bigger beer, but the amber will allow me to taste how the oak affects flavor.

Red Oak


  • 9 lbs. domestic 2-row
  • 1.5 lbs Crystal 60L
  • 0.5 lbs Crystal 80L


  • 0.75 oz Chinook (12.2 % alpha) @ 60 min
  • 0.5 oz Chinook (12.2 % alpha) @ 5 min


  • Yeast starter with Fermentis Safale S-05
  • 2.4 oz dark toasted oak chips (added in secondary, soaked in bourbon for 1 week)
  • pinch of Irish Moss near end of boil

Now I should get back to the mash. It’s probably just about time to sparge.

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