MILDly annoyed

Crickhollow Mild

Crickhollow Mild

So back in November I brewed the third iteration of a Mild recipe thinking I’d nail it with the tweaks from version 2 to version 3 (long-winded blog post here), but after giving version 3 plenty of time to condition and mellow out I still don’t really like it – as gorgeous as it is in the picture above. I think the Crisp Amber malt just brought in an astringent flavor that is really unpleasant. As I mentioned in the competition post I did enter this in UMMO just to see if a trained palate can figure something else out that may be process related – it might even score well – it’s not bad I just don’t really like it and the guidelines do allow for some astringency in roast based versions.

Anyway though – dejected and demoralized I was thinking of just giving up on perfecting a Mild recipe for a while, but as I was reading through the style guideline when I was debating even entering version 3.0 I got an idea for a new recipe that I think could be quite delicious and decided not to give up!

I decided to target a more chocolate forward Mild and utilize some delicious  Simpson’s English Chocolate Malt instead of using Pale Chocolate and either Black Malt or Amber as in versions 2 and 3. I think with the amount I plan to use this should bring in plenty of chocolate flavor while hopefully adding just a bit of coffee and roast flavor. The Carastan and Extra Dark crystals will bring plenty of caramel, toffee, dark fruit, burnt sugar, and other crystal type complexity while the Floor Malted MO will bring plenty of bready maltiness (I sometimes get a hint of honey even – in a very good and pleasant way with this malt). I’m sure with everything going on there will also be plenty of toasty, nutty and other flavors mentioned in the style guidelines as well.

I might cask condition this and serve it on the Caskegerator if I can figure out a good way to bottle some for competition at the same time.

This recipe is subject to change at this point – probably brew it in a week or so:

Mild 4.0

60 Min boil

Mash at 154F for 60 mins

1.038 OG (factoring in .002 pts either way as I haven’t brewed a really low gravity ale since I got my own mill so I’m not sure what the efficiency will be)

1.012 FG

18 IBU (EKG most likely)

83.5% Warminster Floor Malted MO (4.5L)

6% Baird’s Carastan (37L)

6% Simpsons Extra Dark Crystal (160L)

4.5% Simpson’s Chocolate Malt (430L)


Pitched at 62F, let rise to 66F and finish at 68F

Readers – I’m open to any feedback/suggestions/criticisms that you may have on this recipe. I’m debating on the percentages, but I think it’s close. I also toyed with changing the Carastan to a darker crystal (probably the medium), but I think the combination of the Carastan and Extra Dark Crystal could be magical.




Filed under Brewing, Homebrew

3 responses to “MILDly annoyed

  1. Pingback: Homebrewing Blog - Page 55 - Home Brew Forums

  2. I think your changes look good. I love chocolate malt…might be my favorite specialty malt! I made a mild Last march and entered it into a couple different competitions, it did pretty well. The two things I got was it was a tad thin, and it was one-dimensional. I sent the judge (local brewer) my recipe and asked if he had suggestions:

    My recipe:
    7lb – Crisp Pale Ale Malt
    8oz – Crisp Crystal 77L
    6oz – Crisp Crystal 120L
    4oz – Crisp Pale Chocolate

    Judge: Try a small percentage of Special B from Castle Maltings, replace most of the lower Lovibond caramel malts with this. It will provide depth and richness to your flavor profile…Everything else looks good to me.

    So maybe consider dropping the carastan and up the dark crystal a bit more? Regarding a previous milds peppery flavor, not sure if I have ever gotten that from darker malts (not that it isn’t possible) but I did get it in lighter ales prior to treating my water, turns out chlorine that makes it into the final beer can react and have a peppery phenol. Not saying thats your problem, but it is at least another theory.

    Sorry for the long comment! sometimes I get carried away

    • That does make a certain amount of sense, especially in a Dark Mild. I’ll have to look into playing around with the percentages. In regards to chlorine, been there had that problem! Use all RO water now after dumping a couple of batches.

      Thanks for the input!

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