I've been itching to make a Flanders Red for ages, as this is one of my favourite styles. I was going to wait until I had emptied a large glass carboy which has been nursing a lambic for over a year, but couldn't wait any longer. I ordered a new carboy (PET this time) and decided to get this one going.
I looked at a load of recipes in different books and cobbled this together...
3.00 kg Vienna Malt 43.9 %
1.00 kg Pilsner (2 Row) Bel 14.6 %
0.80 kg Munich II (Weyermann) 11.7 %
0.76 kg Munich I (Weyermann) 11.1 %
0.70 kg Wheat, Flaked 10.3 %
0.29 kg Special B (Dingemans) 4.2 %
0.28 kg Aromatic Malt (Dingemans) 4.1 %
20.00 g Goldings, East Kent [4.87 %] - Boil 90.0 min 10.2 IBUs
I aimed for a one hour mash at 70c, but undershot a bit and hit 68c. Hopefully this will still provide enough unfermentable sugar for the bacteria to feed on. I topped up the tun with near boiling water for ten minutes as a form of mash out, but the limited room in the tun meant that this still only reached 72c.
I boiled for 150 minutes in the end. My boil off rate has been quite unpredictable, so I usually follow the volume of liquid in the boiler rather than the clock. Hops are minimal, so the bacteria can get on there work.
I ended up with an OG of 1.066. Higher than planned, oh well. As I forgot to calibrate my new fermenter before filling it with beer, I don't know the precise volume that I've collected. That was a bit of a silly mistake, as calculations for batch priming will be difficult later on.
I pitched one vial of WLP665 Whitelabs Flemish Ale (a blend of Sach, brett, pedio and lacto) and dregs from a bottle of Almanac Dogpatch Sour. Fermentation was slow to get going, so I ordered another vial of WLP665. By the time this arrived a pellicle started to form. I pitched the second vial three days after making the beer and fermentation started to kick off overnight. I've now got a healthy krausen and we're off!