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Here is my first run through of an Extra Special Bitter which served as a test batch more than anything for Simpsons Golden Naked Oats which I wanted to try.  Overall, pretty good!  I like it.  The Naked Oats provide a little bit of a berry nut flavor which is definitely unique and I will be trying again.  

I based my recipe off some of these links as well as Ray Danielle's Book Designing Great Beers although I obviously tossed in the specialty oats at my own discretion.

90% Floor Malted Maris Otter
5% Medium English Crystal
5% Simpsons Golden Naked Oats
60 minutes EKG hop addition to 20 IBUs
15 minutes EKG hop addition to 20 IBUs
0 minute EKG hop addition
Fermented with a ton of British Ale II

Changes I would make for round two would be firming up the body a bit which is a tad lacking.  Either mashing a bit higher than 150*, adding a bit more crystal malt or maybe switching to a lower attenuating English yeast like the Wyeast ESB strain.  Other than that, maybe increasing a tad the IBUs from that first addition but it's pretty tasty as is.   

Here's the tasting video.

Like many American craft brew lovers I’m a big fan of hops.  That said I’m not such a fan of only being able to drink a few of my favorite hoppy beers because of the alcohol content.  Now of course I love a good IIPA but now that it is football season I like to sit back and have a handful of beers so I decided one of my brewing goals will be to create a low gravity, hoppy Pale Ale.  Basically an American session beer.  Working off of my previous Galaxy Pale Ale recipe I’ve tweaked a few things resulting in this: 
5 lbs 4.0 oz Rahr 2-Row Pale (1.7 SRM) 58.3 % 
2 lbs 12.0 oz Vienna Malt (3.5 SRM) 30.6 % 
12.0 oz Caravienne Malt (22.0 SRM) 8.3 % 
4.0 oz Biscuit Malt (23.0 SRM) 2.8 %
0.50 oz Cascade [5.50 %] - Boil 60.0 min 10.7 IBUs 
0.50 oz Cascade [5.50 %] - Boil 15.0 min 5.3 IBUs
0.50 oz Galaxy [14.00 %] - Boil 10.0 min 9.9 IBUs
0.50 oz Cascade [5.50 %] - Boil 5.0 min 2.1 IBUs 
0.50 oz Galaxy [14.00 %] - Boil 5.0 min 5.4 IBUs 
1.0 pkg American Ale II (Wyeast Labs  #1272) [124.21 ml]
1.00 oz Galaxy [14.00 %] - Dry Hop 7.0  Days
 0.50 oz Cascade [5.50 %] - Dry Hop 7.0  Days
Thanks to the help of a brewing forum I recently decided I should try to stir more aggressivly when batch sparging so after draining the
first runnings and mixing in the 180* water I vigorously stirred for two minutes.  Low and behold my pre-boil gravity was almost ten points higher than anticipated and when everything was all said and done I overshot my final gravity by eight points upping my overall brewhouse efficiency from 72% to about 80%. So much for an Americanized session beer though as this tipped me over 5% ABV. 

Yet another new trick I tried on this brewday was whirlpooling my wort before chilling.  The first thing I needed to do was rig up a copper diptube in place of the bazooka screen I had been using to keep hops out of the plate chiller.  Easy enough process once the right tools were found.  Next step was testing out the whirlpool action so I stirred my wort with a large sanitized spoon and let it sit for 10-15 minutes.  I’ll admit the chilling process was a bit nerve racking as I was just waiting for the plate chiller to clog but everything went smoothly and I ended up with a nice little pile of hops in the middle of the pot with very little wort left behind.

So, all in all a nice brewday.  I learned a few things which I don’t know why I hadn’t tried yet but better late than never right? 
Also, I ended up with potentially a pretty nice Pale Ale that I may or
may not end up scaling back to hit somewhere between 4-4.5% ABV.  

This was the best picture I got although I was alble to suck a little more wort out of this guy before all was said and done.
So after looking through my first post and what I gathered as the basic guidelines for a Pumpkin Beer I had some thinking to do.  First off I needed to decide on the style.  My initial thought was a stout or a porter but neither are my girlfiends favorite style so in the end I decided on going with English Style Brown Ale.  My recipe is going to come out somewhat of a hybrid between the Northern Brown and the Southern Brown in that it will be more lightly hopped like the Southern version although the gravity and color will fall in line closer to that of a Northern Brown Ale.  Each uses similar malts, hops and yesat so that wasn't an issue.

69.2% Maris Otter
15.4% Crystal 80
7.7% Flaked Wheat
3.8% Chocolate malt
3.8% Amber Malt
One pound baked and skinned pumpkin cubes

16 IBUs EKG at 60 minutes
8 IBUs EKG at 15 minutes

1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon Ginger, 1/8 teaspoon, Nutmeg, 1/8 teaspoon Clove.
After it is all thoroughly mixed use half at the end of the boil and reserve the rest to add later depending on how much flavor/aroma you want.

London ESB Wyeast 1968

Est SG 1.057
Est ABV 5.6%
22 IBUs
25 SRM