I finally got around to brewing a Belgian Golden Strong beer for aging in my 10 gallon Sons of Liberty whiskey barrel. I had planned on co-brewing a batch months ago and in the meantime the barrel dried out. This beer was brewing in mid-January and has been fermenting since then. It took a while for the beer to finish fermenting. I might have under pitched the yeast even though I used 2 packets and used a 2 liter starter. The next time I brew a big 10 gallon beer I am doing a larger starter or building up the starter twice.
My hope was that the beer would ferment out very dry finish, but it seems to be fairly sweet even though the gravity finished 1.008 or so. As you can see this beer’s grain bill was primarily Pilsner malt with some pale 2-row and sugar. I substituted in some table sugar for some of the corn sugar. The OG was a little lower than I wanted, but well within the style and should finish out around 8.5 % ABV. This beer was inspired by Duvel and I plan on brewing this again in a 5 gallon batch without barrel aging.
The beer has a great Belgian yeast aroma to it with light fruits, pears, but the yeast was slow to drop and it remains a hazy straw color. It should drop out and clear while aging in the barrel. I plan on bottling at least 5 gallons in Belgian corked and cage bottles and enough 12 oz bottles to enter into competitions this year.