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This was supposed to be my run at an Americanized session beer which basically means a hop forward, low gravity American Pale Ale.  That said, I was a bit too good at extracting sugars that day and it wound up being a regular old APA.  Oh well, you live and you learn.  Anyways, without further adieu, the Galaxy Pale Ale 

Aroma:  Hops, hops and more hops!  This is a good smelling beer.  A nice combination of citrus notes from the Cascade additions with a faint fruitiness from the  Galaxy hops.  

Appearance:  What could be a nice deep orange hue with an off white head gets blurred out with haziness from the dry hop addition.  Wish I had snagged a picture before adding the hops because it looked good at first.  

Flavor:  What you get first in the nose comes through in full force as soon as you take a sip.  Hop domination with a heavy dose of that classic Cascade flavor mixed in with fruity notes from the Galaxy.  Any kind of malt flavor or sweetness from the Vienna or Caravienna is hidden or balanced out by the hop presence.  Not really picking up anything from the Biscuit malt either.   


Mouthfeel:  Medium body and good carbonation.  Smooth at first but almost finishes a bit harsh with the hop bitterness lingering.  

Overall Impressions: It’s a nice beer and it’s getting to where I want it to go but not there yet. A little heavy on the hops for what was supposed to be a lighter APA but I think it’s good.  Now come the questions: what to do next time with all this in mind.  As far as I see it I have two options:
     1.   Downgrade to the Sessionized American Pale Ale this was supposed to be.  Honestly I like the grainbill and what I got out of this beer so just shrinking the recipe to hit 1.040 could work.  Another option is subbing in Maris Otter which if going smaller could add some complexity to the beer and is never a terrible idea in my opinion.  If I go down in gravity the hops would need to go down as well.  I think Galaxy can be a bit dominating but I like the flavor a lot but they are a bit much so a lower AA hop might be a better option for a low gravity beer. Perhaps hopbursting at the end without a traditional bittering addition.
Maybe dropping an addition or two or no dry hopping.  Either way, while good, it’s a bit too hoppy now for a session beer.
     2.  Leave it as is and keep a good traditional APA.  But there are still some things to consider here.  I could up the gravity a tad to better balance the hops.  And it still couldn’t hurt from a bit less intensity in terms of bitterness so maybe edging out an addition here or there.  Maybe using a darker crystal malt for a bit more residual sweetness or using a higher mash temperature.  
    3.  That's right, I said two option but now I've thought of a third which boils down to two different beers as described in options one and two.  Make changes to this beer as outined in #2 while making a slightly newer recipe with a less intense hop as outlined in #1.  Ah decisions, decisions.  Life is hard.

9/5/2013 06:45:11 pm

Found your site through Weebly and wanted to say hi

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