I am a huge fan of Dogfish Head Brewery and just found out (where have I been?) that they published a book a few years back, “Extreme Brewing,” which includes recipes from some of their beers. As usual the recipes are for 5 gallon batches. I scaled down a Ginger Saison recipe which sounded intriguing and is fermented with Saison yeast. I had never used this type of yeast before and was quite surprised by how quickly it gets to work and how volatile it is. By day five I was concerned that I had a stuck fermentation because there was no action whatsoever in the airlock and the Kreusen layer was completely gone.
The recipe called for a 10 day fermentation followed by a 10 day bottle condition. I didn’t even wait for the seventh day. I nervously bottled the beer with low hopes for success. This tasting is also based on only waiting 7 days to taste it after bottling.
Sounds crazy but this little beer is delicious. It has really good body and mouthfeel. It was a tad over carbonated but not explosive and settled down quickly. The ginger definitely comes through but a little more subtle than I hoped for. Next time I will add more candied ginger and possibly leave it in the fermenter. The hop flavor is perfect. The hops come through but they aren’t the main attraction. The yeast gives it a little spiciness. I am going to do more experiments with it now that my confidence is restored.
Anyway, here is my 1 gallon beer recipe:
1 gallon water
91 grams crushed Caramunich Malt
2 grams Gypsum
1 lb Light Dried Malt Extract
8.6 grams Hallertau hops
3 grams Hallertau hops
3 grams Syrian Goldings hops
91 grams Light Belgian Candy Sugar
23 grams Crystallized ginger cut into pea sized pieces
Belle Saison Yeast.
This is the book: