When it comes to brewing a refreshing beer, it's tough to beat Belgium's saison style. These beers were historically made for farm workers as thirst quenching compensation during the summer harvest. Saisons are incredibly easy to brew if you follow the right plan. The key is in the fermentation, since the yeast creates the dominant flavors. Classic Belgian saison strain tastes great, but it's notoriously unreliable. Instead, look to the Wyeast French Saison yeast, it consistently produces dry and delicious saisons batch after batch. Adding a pound of acidulated malt creates a faint puckering, and Sorachi Ace hops bring a lemony snap. Our recipe takes more than a little inspiration from Brooklyn Brewery's fantastic Sorachi Ace, but it's not a direct clone recipe.
Batch Size: 5 Gallons
Boil Size: 6 Gallons
Malt Extract and Sugar
7.5 lbs Extra Light Liquid Malt Extract
1 lb Acidulated Malt
1 lb Dextrose (Corn Sugar)
.5 oz Sorachi Ace (12% AA) boiled for 60 minutes
.5 oz Sorachi Ace (12% AA) boiled for 30 minutes
3 oz Sorachi Ace (12% AA) boiled for 0 minutes (Throw them in and turn off the flame)
2 oz Sorachi Ace (12% AA) dry hopped for 3 days
Wyeast 3711 French Saison
Steep the Acidulated Malt for a half hour at 149º F. Remove the grain and bring the six gallons to a boil. Once boiling, add a half ounce of Sorachi Ace. Add another half ounce 30 minutes into the boil and the final four ounces at the end of the boil. Turn off the flame immediately and chill to 66º F. Pitch yeast and allow a week to ten days for fermentation. Do not be surprised if this beer ferments even lower than our predicted final gravity. Add the dry hops using a sanitized nylon bag. After three more days remove the dry hops and bottle or keg the beer.
Mash 11 lbs of Belgian Pilsner malt along with the acidulated malt at 149º F for 60 minutes.
Replace the Sorachi Ace with Citra and add an ounce of fresh orange peel in the last five minutes of the boil for a more tropical take on the saison.