Monday, 20 April 2015

Spanish Cedar IIPA Results & Tasting

I ended up cubing up some of that block of spanish cedar into roughly oak cube sized pieces. I collected about 75 grams of the cubes which is approximately 2.5 oz of the wood. I wasn't really sure how to sanitize the wood, I poured boiling water over them and let them sit for a few minutes before dumping the water down the drain and putting the cubes into the primary. I think that next time I may use vodka to sanitize in order to preserve some of the more delicate flavors of the wood.

Sampled at one week: There was pretty much no spanish cedar flavor.
Sampled at two weeks: Not really any Spanish cedar flavor, but some tannins.
Sampled at three weeks: Same as week two..
@ Five weeks: I give up. There's a but of a pepper in the finish?
Cold crashed w/ gelatin fining, bottled it.


Appearance: Nice gold colour, decent clarity, thick white head that persists from the hop resins. Leaves a thick lacing on the glass as you drink it.

Aroma: Hops! Mango, pineapple, citrusy, a hint of pine

Flavor: Decent bitterness, tropical flavors that are coming from both the citra hops and the trois yeast - orange, mango. No spanish cedar flavor to speak of - I want to say I taste a ghost of a pepper flavor in the finish, but that's probably wishful thinking. Some resiny flavor coming through, Finishes with some sweetness from the crystal malts, and a bite from the alcohol content.

Mouthfeel: There's actually a pretty creamy mouthfeel, maybe a little bit of astringency that might come from the tannins from the wood, but it's not much.

Overall: Meh, It's hoppy and delicious - not bad, but nothing revolutionary. I feel like the time aging on the cedar was bad for the hops but didn't give me any spanish cedar. This was my first time fining an IPA with gelatin, and I don't think I'll do it again. It seems to have lost some hops. Next time I do an IIPA I'll probably add some table sugar to thin it out because even the bit of crystal I added seems to detract from the beer, and I think I would prefer more crispness. Overall, kind of underwhelming unfortunately.

Next time: Up the spanish cedar by a lot, or chop it into smaller pieces for more surface area. Maybe buy some legit spanish cedar spirals, because maybe this isn't very fresh. 

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