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Nelson & Cascade Ale

A very wet day today to be brewing since I like to wash up outside on the patio where I can splash around all I like without making a mess. Still, needs must so it's on with the brew.


This starter for the WLP4000 yeast was made from 1.5 litres of Ashbeck and 150g of light DME boiled, cooled to about 22C and foil capped.

The 500ml overbuild from my previous brew came out of the fridge earlier on to warm up. This'll be the third brew I've done with this WLP4000 Vermont Ale yeast and I'm not finished with it yet.

I decanted off the very clear spent wort and had a taste. As usual it tasted bland and of nothing much at all. So much so I could have bottled it and sold it off as Greene King IPA and nobody would know. Waste not want not and so down the hatch it went. Back to business, the yeast on the bottom of the jar was gently swirled up into suspension and tipped into the waiting flask.

Now that's on my stir-plate in the brew-fridge set at 20C. If the last two starters are anything to go by then I'm to expect no krausen whatsoever and a complete fermentation in less than 2 days. 500ml will be kept back for the fourth use of this yeast pack and a litre will go into the brew.

Brew day

This is a slight variation on my previous Outback Ale No.3 where I used Galaxy and Nelson Sauvin. This time I'm using Cascade and Nelson Sauvin with a little bit of user-upper Simcoe to finish off a bag.

Recipe: Nelson and Cascade Ale
Date: 4 Oct 2020
Batch Size (fermenter): 24.00 L  
Estimated OG: 1.045 SG
Estimated Color: 8.0 EBC
Estimated IBU: 32.8 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 75.6 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes
Water profile: Ca:63, Mg:11, Na:10, SO4:98, Cl:65

Amt         Name                                     Type         %/IBU     Volume       
29.71 L     Tesco Ashbeck                            Water        -         -            
2.50 g      Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) (Mash)          Water Agent  -         -            
2.00 g      Calcium Chloride (Mash)                  Water Agent  -         -            
2.00 g      Epsom Salt (MgSO4) (Mash)                Water Agent  -         -            
1.50 ml     Lactic Acid (Mash)                       Water Agent  -         -            

4.00 kg     Weyermann Bohemian Pilsner (4.0 EBC)     Grain        83.3 %    2.61 L       
0.45 kg     IREKS Crystal Maple (3.5 EBC)            Grain        9.4 %     0.29 L       
0.35 kg     IREKS Munich Malt (20.0 EBC)             Grain        7.3 %     0.23 L       

0.50 g      Gypsum (Calcium Sulfate) (Sparge)        Water Agent  -         -            
0.40 g      Calcium Chloride (Sparge)                Water Agent  -         -            
0.40 g      Epsom Salt (MgSO4) (Sparge)              Water Agent  -         -            
0.20 ml     Lactic Acid (Sparge)                     Water Agent  -         -            

12.00 g     Cascade [6.70 %] - Boil 15.0 min         Hop          4.2 IBUs  -            
12.00 g     Nelson Sauvin [10.40 %] - Boil 15.0 min  Hop          7.1 IBUs  -            
16.00 g     Cascade [6.70 %] - Boil 10.0 min         Hop          4.1 IBUs  -            
16.00 g     Nelson Sauvin [10.40 %] - Boil 10.0 min  Hop          6.9 IBUs  -            
1.00 Items  Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 7.0 mins)         Fining       -         -            
22.00 g     Cascade [6.70 %] - Boil 5.0 min          Hop          3.1 IBUs  -            
22.00 g     Nelson Sauvin [10.40 %] - Boil 5.0 min   Hop          5.2 IBUs  -            
20.00 g     Simcoe [11.70 %] - Boil 2.0 min          Hop          2.3 IBUs  -            

1.0 pkg     Vermont Ale (Yeast Bay #-)               Yeast        -         -  

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Medium Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 4.80 kg
Name      Description                      Step Temperature   Step Time    
Mash In   Add 24.71 L of water at 70.5 C   67.0 C             60 min       

Sparge: Dunk sparge with 5 L of water at 75 C

Brew day went well with no hiccups and I was all done and washed up (carefully in the kitchen!) by midday.

OG was 1.046, 1 point above predicted and I hit my target of 24 litres into the fermenter. This will almost certainly ferment down to 1.007 give or take 1 point yielding an ABV of 5.0 or 5.1%.

I got it down to about 22C with the immersion chiller using the usual 65 litres of water and the fermenter is now in the brew-fridge coming down to around 19C when I'll pitch the WLP4000 Vermont yeast starter.


Final gravity was 1.009, slightly higher than I'm used to but still perfectly OK. I don't think the Vermont Ale is running out of steam yet. I hope not as I'm going to re-use it for a fourth and last time in the next brew.

I got a keg and then two bottles from the remainder. The keg got its usual Kwik-Clear finings and a 5x15psi purge and is now on for a set-and-forget carbonation at 12C and 12psi.

Last weekend I tried the left over bottles from my Outback Ale No.3 and was surprised to see how much darker and muted in flavour they were than the bright and fresh beer I get from kegs. So this time I've added a cheeky 0.1g of ascorbic acid to each of the left-over bottles to see if does the job in scavenging oxygen.

Tasting notes

It's been about a month in the keg now and the flavours are coming together nicely. I haven't used cascade in a while and it's a bit like seeing an old friend again with the grapefruit notes being so reminiscent of the first APAs that arrived over here in the UK. Nelson Sauvin is what it is and you know if you like it or not. I certainly do and it's a great match for Cascade.