Simplicity Mild was chosen because it is a very simple recipe which will allow for experimentation one grain or hop at a time. This is planned to be an experiment with adding smoked malt to Simplicity Mild. While bringing the wort to a boil with the lid on the pot I got sidetracked and stayed away for too long, resulting in a bit of a boilover and loss of a cup or two of wort. That aligns with my actual volume I ended up with versus what I expected.

Preboil SG: 1.032

Original gravity: 1.042

Final gravity: 1.016

Volume in Fermenter: 2.6 Gallons

Mash process:

As usual, I did a full volume, single vessel BIAB mash and boil. I Added grains to a full volume 4.04 gallons of water at 160F. Stirred initially and again after about 15 minutes. I then just let everything sit for 60 minutes. Wort temperatures at the end ranged from 150F to 154F depending on where I stuck the thermometer. At the end I squeezed the grain bag hard from several spots and angles to get as much wort as possible out, as I usually do. Then I heated to boiling.


After boiling I cooled the wort to 70F and pitched about 7 grams of Danstar Windsor which had been rehydrated. It is cold outside right now and my temperature controller is set to heat to 70F so temperatures should stay consistently between 69F and just over 70F.


I seem to have a bit of a stuck fermentation at 1.020 to 1.021. I am not entirely surprised, my initial fermentation was strange. It took off even quicker than expected, formed a small layer of krausen, and had the krausen all fall in under 24 hours. My best guess is that although I pitched within the range for the yeast, it was still too warm and the cells did not multply enough. It's also possible that I did not have enough oxygen in the wort, but I did things the same as I always do by letting the wort pour from the spout fairly high above the fermenter while also shaking the fermenter around. This also was not a high gravity beer, so the yeast really should not have needed much.

I will rouse the yeast a couple of times per day for the next day or two and if no change happens I may try throwing some US-05 in to see what happens.

Small samples taken while checking the gravity were good, though. 20% smoked malt is a fairly good balance which is noticeable but not overpowering.

My latest gravity readings and future readings will also be done with new hydrometers. My new hydrometers are smaller range and so easier to read and have markings every .001 instead of .002 and one has every .0005. They are also reading much more accurately in distilled water, with the .0980 - 1.020 hydrometer reading at 0.999 or 0.998 and my 1.000 - 1.070 hydromter reading exactly 1.000.


On the 15th I had noticed that there was a lot of bubbling at the top of the wort, some airlock popping, and the wort had gotten very hazy again. I was not sure if it was fermentation restarting or just oddities due to air pressure changes because of the weather coming through. I bumped up the heat on the fermenter to 73F and added about 1.5 Tsp of yeast energizer just to see what would happen. I checked the gravity again on the 18thth and it had dropped down to about 1.016 and was still there on the 19th. Saturday morning, the 29th, I got the beer in the keg and burst carbonated at about 30 psi and the occasional keg shaking for about 8 hours. I managed to time the carbonation about right and the beer was not flat or overcarbonated for my first pour to drink while playing some video games after getting the kids in bed.

Initial Impression

I am happy with how this turned out. The smoke is definitely present, but not overpowering and works well with the base flavors of the beer. I poured a second glass today and the smoke was barely there for some sips. I am guessing something to do with serving temperature and what else I had been eating and drinking recently. Based on my first glass, I safely could have gone down to 15% or possibly 10% smoked malt and still had enough smoke but based on today I am not sure I would want to go much less than the current 20%. My final gravity is a bit higher than intended which could be due to whatever went weird with fermentation or slightly higher mash temperature.

Style Details

1.030 - 1.038 1.008 - 1.013 10 - 25
12 - 25 srm

Batch Details

Brewed OnPackaged OnOn Tap DateOriginal GravityFinal GravityColor
Feb. 6, 2021 Feb. 20, 2021 Feb. 20, 2021 1.042 1.016
20 srm