While not recognized as a style by the BJCP, this is the strongest of the Belgian beers brewed today. This beer has deep raisin and caramel notes, with big dark fruit flavors from the malt and special Belgian yeast. Slight spiciness and low hop flavor contribute to an intoxicating finish. To purchase this kit, click here.
Original Gravity 1.104
Final Gravity 1.020
Alcohol Content 11.1%
8 lb. Alexander’s Pale Malt Extract
2 lb. Briess Golden Light DME
2 lb. D-180L Candi Syrup
½ lb. Dingemans Aromatic Malt
½ lb. Dingemans Special B Malt
½ lb. Dingemans CaraVienne Malt
1 ½ oz Sterling Hops (Bittering)
½ oz Sterling Hops (Flavor)
2 packs of Safbrew T-58 Belgian Yeast
These procedures are abbreviated. If you are not familiar with basic homebrewing techniques, please contact us for more details.
1. Divide the cracked grains among 3 of the muslin bags (½ pound per bag) and add them to your brew kettle along with 2 gallons of cold water, leaving enough head space to avoid boil overs. Heat slowly.
2. Steep the grains in hot water (about 145º – 160ºF) to extract flavor and color — do not allow to boil. After about 30 minutes, remove the grain bags and then bring the water to a boil.
3. Remove the pot from the heat and add both cans of extract (reserve the other two bags and syrup to be added later in the boil). Keep the kettle off the burner and stir until the malt extract is completely dissolved.
4. Put the pot back on the burner and bring to a boil. Once boiling, place the bittering hops into muslin bags (no more than 1 oz. per bag), add them to the pot, and set your timer to boil for 1 hour. Keep an eye on the pot to avoid boil-overs.
5. After 40 minutes of boiling, remove the pot from the heat (you do not have to stop the timer) and add the candi syrup along with the remaining dried malt extract (both bags).
6. Stir until both are completely dissolved, then put the pot back on the heat.
7. After 45 minutes, add the flavoring hops (in a muslin bag). Also add ½ teaspoon of Irish moss, or 1 Whirlfloc tablet, which can help clarify your beer (optional).
8. After 60 minutes of boiling, turn off the heat. Put a lid on your pot and cool it in an ice bath (use your sink) for about 30 minutes. Remove hop bags from the kettle before pouring into fermenter.
9. Pour 1 gallon of cold water into your sanitized fermenter, add the cooled wort (the stuff in your pot), and top up with additional water to 5 gallons. Aerate the wort with vigorous stirring, rocking the fermenter, etc.
10. Make sure the wort is below 80°F before adding yeast. Take a hydrometer reading if desired. Add the yeast to the wort.
11. Store the fermenter where the temperature will be a fairly constant 65° – 75°F. Active fermentation may take only a few days, or it can last up to 2 weeks. A hydrometer reading is a great way to determine when the fermentation is done. Keep the beer in the primary fermenter for two weeks until active fermentation is done (no signs of active fermentation for the last 2-3 days).
12. This beer may benefit from a secondary fermentation. This extended aging should be done in a glass carboy for an additional 2 to 8 weeks before bottling (optional).
13. When ready to bottle, siphon beer into your sanitized bottling bucket, leaving sediment behind. Boil the priming sugar in 1-2 cups of water for a few minutes, gently stir into the beer, and bottle as usual.