We Love our new home country of El Salvador.
And we are really enjoying working on making exceptional Cerveza Artesanales that reflect the beauty and bounty of El Salvador and Central America. Three of our favorite things from El Salvador are Coffee, Fruit and Cerveza. (well Cerveza Artesenal is not YET made in EL Salvador…) We have been working on making a beer that celebrates all three of those great things. We have brewed a Belgian Style Dark Ale with Tamarindo and Las Mercedes Coffee. We have brewed a Black Coffee IPA with Matalapa coffee.
And today we tried our latest experiment:
A Coffee Citrus Cerveza
We made a Strawberry Blonde ale, used three very aromatic citrusy hops (and LOTS of em) and we brewed the beer with three different forms of coffee and three different citrus. The wert smelled and tasted fantastic so it looks good. We also nailed the numbers for OG, volume, and temps so things look good. And with our improved temperature control in the fermenting room that side of things is easier to control.
To get ready for the big Craft Beer Tasting on November 9th at Torre Futura we have been brewing like crazy. However we have made so many great beers that we keep saving them aside for the tasting. So despite having well over 100 bottles of home brewed Craft Beer on hand we can’t drink any of them! Frustration reigns! So for this beer we decided to brew a larger 55 Liter batch so we could have some to drink. That’s the plan anyway…
Our flavor goals were to give a lot of coffee taste without any coffee bitterness. We also wanted to highlight the coffee aromas and match them with the bright sweetness of the citrus peels and the hops we chose.
The coffee is also near and dear to our heart. We used only Finca San Jose Coffee. We used a special prep of coffee cascara that they did just for us, plus a special roast of their coffee that Viva Espresso made just for us. We used the coffee both whole bean and ground to accent different flavors and aromas. Finca San Jose has a very sweet lemony citrus aroma and flavor with a lot of butterscotch and some peach and chocolate in the finish. The cascara is the dried fruit of the coffee cherry and when brewed has a very sweet dried cherry and black tea quality with a distinct coffee fruit taste and aroma.
Here are the basic ingredients:
- Barley: We used four different barleys: Pale Ale, 2 row Rahr, 6 row Rahr and caramel 40. This gives it good diastatic power plus a nice strawberry blonde color
- Hops: four different hops: Simcoe, Amarillo, Sorachi Ace and Sterling. Four hop infusions in the boil, whole hops in the hop rocket and dry hopping. Lots hops
- Coffee: cascara, whole bean and ground in four different stages and places to accent the sweetness and aromas
- Citrus: the peel of half an Arabic lime and the peel of a mandarin orange and Belgian bitter orange peel only briefly boiled
The pilot brew house performed flawlessly and the new mash tun and vorlaufing setup works like a dream. We will be tweaking the sparge arm we made a bit to improve the flow rate control and evenness. Brewing beer on a pilot system is the best way to try new recipes and test processes. Then when we finally open our micro-brewery the process will be easy and simple.
Cerveza Artesanal is coming to El Salvador and the rest of Central America!