Oirish Red Ale

A lovely, malty, red ale. This was a very easy drinking beer and made a good introduction to the world of “good beer” for my uninitiated friends. This beer also placed 3rd in the A & P show newcomer beer category 🙂

Pre-Boil Gravity: 1.052 SG
Original Gravity: 1.056 SG
Final Gravity: 1.010 SG
ABV: 6.1 %
Colour: 28 EBC
BU:GU Ratio: 0.61

Mash water: 18L
Sparge water: 14L

Grain (total: 5.55kg):
German Pilsner Malt 5.1 kg (92%)
Crystal Malt 300g (5%)
Chocolate Malt 150g (3%)

21g Nelson Sauvin 11.8% (33 IBU) @ 60min
The hops variety doesn’t matter too much as all the aroma will boil away. Go with what you have handy.

Mash at 67°C for 60 mins

Ferment at 19°C with SafAle US-05 or Mangrove Jack’s M44 (US West Coast) Use Marshall Schott’s Ale schedule on your upgraded STC-1000, or give it a week or so.

I based this recipe on the one from Jamil Zainasheff’s excellent book Brewing Classic Styles.


8 Responses to “Oirish Red Ale”

  1. Marc


    Sorry for the newbie questions but I’m new to brew with grains and I was wondering what is the quantity of Nelson Sauvin hop? And, when you say “Nelson Sauvin 33 IBU @ 60min”, does it mean after 60 minutes of boiling?

    I can’t wait to brew this one with my new Grainfather! 😉


    • Karl

      Sorry Marc- have been flat out and have been neglecting my blog a bit!
      33IBU @ 60 Min means that the hops should be in the boil with 60 mins to go (i.e. for the whole boil). Hops added at 5 min means with five min to go, or alternatively you could say that it sits in the boil for 5 mins. The quantity will vary with the % Alpha Acid. If you use software to formulate your recipes you can easily work out the quantity by using the %AA, the time of the boil and just fiddle with the quantity until you get 30-35IBUs
      I used 22g of 11.2% Nelson Sauvin. Don’t stress too much about the variety as the aroma will all boil off anyway. Just go with whatever you have lying around to get 30-35IBUs

      • Marc

        Thank you for the answer, it will help. I do not use software, not yet, and I do not know what the IBU but I’ll googling. I have a lot to learn and, as with anything, it will be easier with more experience. For now, I will use 22g of Nelson Sauvin because I already bought.

        Thank you again and do not worry for the delay to reply, I was just eager to try your recipe!

  2. Peter Brown

    Hi Karl,

    Love your site.

    I have my Grainfather arriving tomorrow and I think I’ll give this recipe a try for the first batch 🙂

    • Karl

      Thanks Peter. Good luck with your Grainfather – they’re great machines and I enjoy using mine immensely!

      • Peter Brown

        Just wondering what I could use instead of the Nelson hops, cannot get hold of them in Australia at the minute. :). What would you suggest that would get a close result?

        Thanks again

        • Karl

          It’s a tricky one. Nelson Sauvin haps are pretty unique. For this particular beer they don’t matter too much as they’re only used for bittering. I’m sure I only used Nelson Sauvin because I had an open bag and needed to use it.

          I would use your standard favourite bittering hop (mine is Pacific Jade) in place of the Nelson Sauvin. Or any other hop you have lying around that will do bittering duty 🙂


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