Kept you waiting, huh? I thought I’d sworn off updating this after spending most days neck deep in WordPress writing for a tech blog at my old gig, but even that ended more than a year ago. Here we are again shaking off the rust and trying to prevent my brain from turning to mush, and this time I actually have something to contribute to the larger homebrewing consciousness! 100% Brettanomyces fermentation with Bootleg Biology’s Funk Weapon #2.
Brewed December 4th, 2016
|Batch Size||Boil Time||IBU||SRM||OG||Est. FG||ABV|
|6 gal||60 min||estimated 63 (totally not this)||5||1.050 SG||1.013 SG||4.8%|
Fermentables (60 min mash @ 158°F)
|Swaen Pilsner Malt||9 lbs 4 oz||82.2|
|Simpsons Golden Naked Oats||2 lbs||17.8|
|Columbus||0.25 oz/~11 IBU||60||Boil||Pellet||13.2|
|Citra||1.5 oz/0 IBU||FO||Boil||Pellet||13.9|
|Galaxy||1.5 oz/0 IBU||FO||Boil||Pellet||13.2|
|Citra||1.5 oz/27 IBU||30 min 160°||Whirlpool||Pellet||13.9|
|Galaxy||1.5 oz/26 IBU||30 min 160°||Whirlpool||Pellet||13.2||Citra||4 oz/26 IBU||2 days||Keg hop||Pellet||13.2|
|Funk Weapon #2||Bootleg Biology||73% AA||68°F/8 weeks|
|135ppm Calcium, 24ppm Sulfate, 200ppm Chloride|
Some people love to play with various malts and new hot hop varieties. These days I lean towards experimenting with new and weird yeast strains. Bootleg Biology’s Funk Weapon #2 caught my eye after being released last summer with this description, “Amplifies citrus and tropical fruit-forward hop flavors and aromas into a punchy ripeness. With extended time under CO2 pressure, pineapple and tropical fruit aromas will be more pronounced”. As a huge fan of NEIPA, this was right up my alley.
Brew day went off without a hitch. I’ve settled in a groove where my process is largely nailed down, unremarkable, and meditative. A few shiny new toys here and there, but everything is utilitarian and largely minimal. Bigger pot, better burner, quicker chiller, etc. I still prefer to mash in a cooler, but I use a brew bag along with a kettle screen to run off. Stuck mashes are a thing of the past thankfully.
I made a 2 liter starter a few days prior and let it go on my stirplate until finally pitching the whole volume in 66°F wort. The first few days had me worried with no sign of active fermentation emerging until three days later. After that it was a solid month or so of blooping with me sneaking sniffs of the airlock: huge fruity, mango character! I decided to ride this one out for a bit longer since I had other kegs to finish up and I wanted to be sure it was done fermenting. Eight weeks after brew day, I kegged it and gave it a solid dose of Citra dry hops.
Appearance: Yellow and hazy, just like pineapple cocktail juice. Pours with a decently sized white head that fades to a hint of white along the top.
Aroma: Pineapple, pineapple, and some pineapple. Hey this one smells like pineapple juice! Slight dank edge. Some grapefruit, some mango. Citrusy. Lemon? Nah, mostly pineapple that’s been sitting on the counter for a day. Big overripe fruit nose with a touch of pine. Seriously though, it’s pineapple juice.
Flavor: This is where things get interesting. Big pineapple flavor upfront complete with a slightly tart, citric acidity. Is it a Sour IPA? Maybe. It tastes like a slightly tart mimosa, but with pineapple juice instead of orange juice. Spritzy, mimosa-like carbonation on the tongue without the carbonic bite. There’s enough bitterness to remind you it’s actually beer, but it’s not overwhelming or harsh. The golden naked oats lend a slightly malty backbone, but doesn’t get in the way of the juicy character.
I’m a big fan of this beer. Just when I thought I was done brewing IPAs for a while, this one kicked new life into my appreciation for the style. I definitely plan on experimenting more with this yeast, especially with less tropical hops, just to see what kind of aromas and flavors I can eek out without the use of cheater hops like Citra and Galaxy. I might also try adding a little to my house saison culture to boost the juice factor! If you can get your hands on some Funk Weapon #2 give it a shot!