Saturday, November 24, 2012

Bottling the X-Mas Ale

Today I bottled my 2012 X-Mas Ale.

You may or may not remember that I brewed this batch towards the end of October (see Brewing the 2012 X-Mas Ale if you would like to refresh your memory).

It had a very vigorous fermentation with lots of blow-off. After a week, I racked it into a secondary fermentor along with about 1 tbsp of peppermint extract. It has been in the secondary almost 3 weeks.

I thought the sample I had today seemed like about the right amount of peppermint, but I think maybe this beer is going to be another one that has a schizophrenic flavor. Some days I will think it seems awesome and on other days it will seem to have too much peppermint. Last year's X-Mas Ale was that way with its hazelnut flavoring.

Of course, we will have to see how I feel when I drink the finished product. I think maybe next year I won't add festive non-beer flavoring. I might just make the base beer and call that my X-Mas Ale. Again, we will see.

The 2012 X-Mas Ale came out to 8.3 ABV, which makes it my biggest X-Mas ale. It has a nice base of chocolate and caramel malts with a very noticeable peppermint aroma and flavor. It has a chocolate candy cane character which should be a nice treat on cold (hopefully snowy) December nights. I am sure the high ABV will help warm up the body.

The bottling was not too bad. Obviously, it was not as easy as kegging a batch, but for having to bottle everything went as it should. As usual, I racked into a keg and used my Blichman Beer Gun to fill the bottles.

I have the bottles sitting in a conditioning cooler in my basement. I will let them carbonate for two weeks before tasting one sometime around mid-December. I will have plenty for my drinking pleasure for the Christmas season.

Merry Christmas Everyone.

Go Bears!

1 comment:

  1. Ha .. I had forgotten that I had blogged about my Leprechaun Stout (see

    In it I wrote "I may even put some peppermint in my next X-Mas Ale."

    It was not my next one.... or even the one after that, but I did eventually, didn't I?