Tim Sciascia of Cellarmaker Brewing Co. in San Francisco, California, brewed this beer for GKR, owner of Good Karma Vegan Cafe in San Jose, California. It uses Underberg, an herbal bitter digestif with a strong licorice flavor that is aged in Slovenian oak casks for many months. You can find three-packs of 20 ml bottles at specialty liquor stores. When infused into this recipe, it creates a sophisticated brew with hints of anise and herbs, bittersweet cacao, and a restrained smoky bite.
Batch size: 5 gallons (19 liters)
Brewhouse efficiency: 72%
6.6 lb (3 kg) Canadian 2-row pale malt
5 lb (2.3 kg) Scottish Golden Promise malt
1.3 lb (590 g) chocolate malt
1.2 lb (544 g) German Beechwood smoked malt
7 oz (198 g) brown malt
2.3 oz (65 g) black malt
HOPS & ADDITIONS SCHEDULE
1.65 oz (47 g) Amarillo [9.2% AA] at 75 minutes
2 oz (57 g) Hersbrucker [2.75% AA] (or other low alpha European-aroma hops variety—Cellarmaker uses Styrian Celeia) at whirlpool/flameout
3.4 fl oz (100 ml) Underberg (see “Directions” below)
White Labs WLP002
Single-infusion mash at 151°F (66°C) for 60 minutes. Boil for 75 minutes. Ferment at 68°F (20°C) until the specific gravity reaches 1.032, then raise the temperature to 72°F (22°C) for a diacetyl rest. Cold condition for 3–5 days and then rack off the yeast. Add one 20 ml Underberg bottle per gallon (3.8 l) of beer yielded. Bottle or keg the beer and carbonate. Serve cold (for the finest flavor) after another week.
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