Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

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Rookie
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Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by Rookie » Wed Apr 25, 2018 4:50 pm

I've been reading about maltsters reviving old strains of barley like chevelia. Has anyone out there tried it out in a regular recipe in place of maris otter or other readily available malt?
I'm just here for the beer.

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by PeeBee » Sun Apr 29, 2018 12:30 pm

I've a historic domestic pale ale (i.e. at 55IBU somewhat less hops than a historic "India Pale Ale" - it will still knock the spots off flimsy modern day so-called "IPAs") earmarked for some Chevallier I've got to hand (that's the right spelling for the barley grain - and Rev. John Chevallier MD who's credited with developing it).

My understanding is that a mashes to quite high proportion of unfermentable sugars, so it might be best to mash a little extended (time-wise) and a touch on the low temperature side (65C instead of 67C?). Best accounts I've found is it will produce a richer, fuller and more complex flavour. Modern barley varieties for malting, like Maris Otter, were selected for being easier to grow, harvest and make malt from and not necessarily for better flavour.

The "domestic" pale ale recipe I'll base my beer on is: http://www.durdenparkbeer.org.uk/Recipe ... shers 60/-

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by HTH1975 » Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:02 pm

As above, I’ve heard the same about Chevallier. However, this (to my mind) also explains some of the crazy-hop hopping rates of beers back when this malt was widely used.

Btw, if you want to try something different to the ubiquitous Maris Otter, try Halcyon - my best beers were made with this malt and I don’t think it’s coincidence.

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Chevallier malt - "Usher's" 1886 Pale Ale

Post by PeeBee » Sun Sep 23, 2018 1:19 pm

Well down the line now, the beer has had it's 3 months maturing and is on tap.

Chevallier malt: Disappointed at first because I never hit expected extraction levels - a mash efficiency of just over 60% when I normally expect over 80%.

Usher's 1886 Pale Ale: The hopping was fierce, it needed the 3 months to mellow.

And "mellow" it did! But serving to someone sensitive to bitter in beer got me told that it was still noticeably bitter! All that you hear about Chevallier malt proves right: It's fuller, richer, more complex … and tastes like honey! It is dramatically different, far more so than switching between modern varieties of malt (Maris Otter barley, etc.).

Oddly this beer didn't taste so good on hand-pump (still good!) and was more palatable at 4-6PSI. If you chose to go with b*** crunching pressure (finishing them off with frost-bite) this observation will mean nothing to you.

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by HTH1975 » Sun Sep 23, 2018 5:08 pm

Thanks for the update on this - great to hear your experience with Chevallier. I read a review somewhere saying that he mashed low at 64C with this malt to balance the extra flavour and poorer extract.

Once I’ve moved house I have a couple of IPA recipes earmarked to try out with eye-watering IBUs. They will be aged for 6 months minimum though.

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Re: Chevallier malt - "Usher's" 1886 Pale Ale

Post by PeeBee » Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:41 pm

HTH1975 wrote:
Sun Sep 23, 2018 5:08 pm
Thanks for the update on this ...
Cheers. I'm intending to repeat the "Usher's" recipe for Christmas but adapting for an anticipated lower extraction - I wish I'd heard the Chevallier malt will extract low before starting the last, or perhaps I should have assumed it?

I picked a "domestic" pale ale because I was worried I might not get on with a historical IPA (and didn't want to be stuck with an even longer "mellowing out" period). I take it the IPA recipes you've earmarked are of the "historic recreation" variety and not the modern-day hop-forward, "bung in loads of new variety American hops" type? 'Cos I think the Chevallier malt flavours will fight badly with the "tropical flavoured" hops. But as you are aging for 6+ months I guess I should assume "historic".

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by PeeBee » Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:52 pm

HTH1975 wrote:
Sun Sep 23, 2018 5:08 pm
… Once I’ve moved house I have a couple of IPA recipes earmarked to try out with eye-watering IBUs. They will be aged for 6 months minimum though.
Don't wait! Get it made now and bung the maturing casks in the back of the removal truck. So it wont be a ship to India, but you could say its "sort of" authentic.

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by HTH1975 » Tue Sep 25, 2018 5:50 pm

PeeBee wrote:
Mon Sep 24, 2018 12:52 pm
HTH1975 wrote:
Sun Sep 23, 2018 5:08 pm
… Once I’ve moved house I have a couple of IPA recipes earmarked to try out with eye-watering IBUs. They will be aged for 6 months minimum though.
Don't wait! Get it made now and bung the maturing casks in the back of the removal truck. So it wont be a ship to India, but you could say its "sort of" authentic.
You are correct that I’m thinking historic IPA recipes - I’m a big fan of Ron Pattinson’s blog and have loads of recipes input into brewers friend ready for brewing. I’m not a massive fan of American hop-bomb IPAs to be honest, I’d much rather have an IPA with UK hops.

Unfortunately I can’t get a brew on as everything is packed away and in storage already.

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by PeeBee » Sat Sep 29, 2018 11:32 am

Should add...

Can't find any other descriptions of Chevalier malt tasting of "honey"? But it was tasting distinctly of honey! Perhaps the yeast had a hand in it? I used a "Scottish Ale" yeast (well, being an Usher's recipe); WYeast #1728.

Was reading about "Scottish" yeast recently. Apparently you can't really define a brewery it came from because historically the Scottish breweries shared their yeast about a bit (or "a lot", certainly when compared to English breweries that may of had a more "possessive" attitude). I understand their yeasts, which will be composed of multiple "strains", made it across the North Sea to spark off the Belgium "strains" - shout me down if I'm wrong.

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by TheSumOfAllBeers » Sat Sep 29, 2018 12:50 pm

It’s an interesting theory- if the Scots weren’t too precious about sharing their yeast with other breweries it would seem odd that they might draw a line at a Belgian one.

There is anecdotal evidence of exchange of brewing techniques and influences between the uk & Belgium. So the idea of the Scots swapping yeast has credibility.

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by HTH1975 » Sat Sep 29, 2018 3:07 pm

I’ve read about Scottish, especially Edinburgh breweries, swapping yeast interchangeably so there was always a good supply in the area of highly viable yeast. In lieu of real sanitary yeast-storage practices it would make sense just to top crop and pitch viable yeast from a recent brew.

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Re: Has anyone compared heirloom barley to m o?

Post by PeeBee » Sat Sep 29, 2018 4:10 pm

TheSumOfAllBeers wrote:
Sat Sep 29, 2018 12:50 pm
It’s an interesting theory- if the Scots weren’t too precious about sharing their yeast with other breweries it would seem odd that they might draw a line at a Belgian one.

There is anecdotal evidence of exchange of brewing techniques and influences between the uk & Belgium. So the idea of the Scots swapping yeast has credibility.
'Tain't my "theory", if it is a theory? Just something I came across recently. It's the strong Belgium beers (Trappist?) that may have some shared "ancestry" amongst yeast. Scottish bottle conditioned beer was popular on that side of the water. I mention it only as an opportunity to remove possible nonsense from my head - or else reinforce that snippet into the rest of my dubious "knowledge".

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