29A - Fruit Beer - Belgian Strong Pinot

BJCP Style: 29A - Fruit beer, 25C - Belgian Golden Strong (base beer)

This was a collaboration with a friend who contacted me earlier with, "I have this Pinot Noir wine kit and we should do something with it."

Two experiments were born: combine 1/3 Pinot Noir with a beer, and a cider.

I chose Belgian Golden Strong as the base beer thinking it would blend well with the wine and provide a good base without getting in the way.

Unfortunately I don't have any pics of the brewday, but it would be the same as the previous BGS brewday, just at a smaller scale: I made 16L of wort and added 8L of grape juice (diluted from concentrate), and ended up with an OG of 19°P.

Full recipe is on BrewersFriend, but here's the TL;DR:
  • Brewday: 2019-12-29
  • Fermentables: Pilsner malt, sugar, Pinot Noir grape juice
  • Hops: [Magnum] (Fuggles)
  • Yeast: Wyeast 1388 (Belgian Strong)
  • OG: 19°P, FG: 2.2°P, ABV: 9.2%
  • Kegged: 2020-2-28
Only brewday pic I got was mash temp:

2020-1-5 (+7): Both transferred to secondary because I needed the fermenters for other brews.

Hydrometer check on the Belgian - not quite there yet but it's only been a week.

Samples: beer left, cider right. The cider was fermented on the house cider yeast which is Belle Saison. It got a head start as it went onto a yeast cake from a Table Saison that was recently kegged.

2020-1-29 (+30): Oak spiral added

2020-2-9 (+41): samples checked (Belgian Pinot left, Cider right) - looks to be finished at 2.2°P. Tasting very clean with plenty of red wine character. Pretty murky at this point but hoping that will drop out in the keg with some gelatin.

2020-2-25 (+57): More samples for gravity checks: BSP, Cider, Tropical Stout, Dunkelweizen. The latter 2 just got kegged. BSP still looks like pink grapefruit juice but was given a gelatin treatment and put in the fridge to cold crash. Kegging soon!

2020-2-27 (+59): Cold crash with gelatin. No more pink grapefruit juice!

2020-2-28 (+60): kegged samples. Belgian left:

2020-3-14 (+75): Fully carbonated and clear. The pinot dominates the flavor profile, but the beer base is holding its own; the beer version is night and day difference from the cider. Both are great, but the beer offers up quite a bit more complexity.

2020-4-7 (+99): sample in the weeble glass. Tasting exceptional. Everything works in this and as much as I don't like fruit beer this is definitely an exception.