Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Me And The Homebrews: Imperial Style

When last we left our hero, the Homebrews were dialing up a batch of Imperial Ales for Ascension. Well, the fateful day came and we kegged our kingly brew.

The Imperial Blonde ale clocked in at a disappointing 5.75% ABV, which is not-so-imperial (due to our mistake). However, the big rounded taste more than makes up for that. This big, beautiful blonde is now on tap as a wonderful session beer. Malty, but with a vaguely Pale Ale-ish hoppiness that is a real crowd pleaser.

Photo Credit: (never home)maker, baby!

We kegged it up with bottled C02 at 12 PSI for a few days, then dialed it back to 5 PSI for serving. It has a deliciously clear presentation -- probably the clearest beer we've had to date. Originally from Brewer's Best, this one is definitely going on the "Make Again" list.

The other Ascension Ale, Imperial Mild, is in situ in our spare 5 gallon keg, but with just enough C02 to close the seals. I'm debating whether to naturally carbonate it, but I'm wavering because all I have on hand is table sugar. That will work fine, but I need to use less of it (1/3 cup) than priming sugar because it has a greater density. Nobody wants to over-carb their beer.

This one clocked in at a respectable 6.8% ABV, and has that characteristic Imperial mouthfeel: full and rich. The Imperial Mild will pair well with a semi-soft cheese and some aromatic bread. Dark and lovely, with a big, rich, malty flavor. Drink more than one of these at a sitting, and we'll glide all the way to Oktoberfest before you know it.

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