Transition A Blonde Ale into a Lemonade Ale

lemonade ale

lemonade aleAfter a few tries with a homebrewing kit, you may want to graduate to tougher, more complex brewing techniques.

An easy step from the kits you can buy is to buy the ingredients you used in your kit and make that same beer again. A bit of a farther step is to take a recipe you may find online among the numerous homebrewing forums.

I suggest you work on base beers that align to the Beer Judge Certification Program (BJCP) standards first — that way you are learning what flavors should be there and most importantly, should NOT be there.

We all want to make the next great Chocolate Chip Banana Coconut Coffee Stout, but first focus on how a Stout should taste. Better yet, find out how a basic Porter is made so you can compare the flavors.

That will help you down the line in making good beer.

The BJCP website is a great resource, along with the American Homebrewers Association site, to find out how these base styles are formulated and even what are good sub-categories that come from the base style.

I have been working on three beer styles over the last year, just to get them down pat before I “mess” with them by adding new flavors.

One of those beers has been a Blonde Ale.

Basic? Yes. But it’s a good beer to work from to make a new beer with.

This past week, my wife asked me to try to make a new type of fruit beer — a Lemonade Ale.

I used my Blonde Ale base as a reference and worked with lemons, lemon peel and the juice of those lemons to concoct what I hope will be a tasty 6.5 percent shandy-like beer. It will be low in bite, high in sweet, but it will still have a malt backbone to let you know you are drinking a beer and not lemonade. The carbonation will be there as well to help you remember you got a pint of suds in your hand after a day at the beach or mowing the yard.

Raise one up!


Fermenter: Experimental Lemonade Ale

Secondary: Broke, sad and empty. I had to go buy a new carboy! My glass one broke while cleaning it. *sad face*

Bottled: Taddy Porter, Nut Brown Ale, Imperial Cream Ale, Wee Heavy.

Up next: A co-worker of mine asked for me to make him my original Blonde Ale again. Five gallons just wasn’t enough to share I guess! I will be tweaking the recipe a tad to help eliminate some of the bite that is present. Thanks to the judges of various competitions I have been in for helping me find the flaws.

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