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Reddish Moon – Petite Red Saison

August 11, 2012

Hot on the heels of my (name in progress) “High-Citrus Saison” comes another saison.  I didn’t brew this necessarily because I needed or wanted another Saison, but because the french saison yeast is pretty wonderful.  I figured that while I’ve got it, I’ll make use of it.

Mashing, sparge water heating

This one is named after an unreleased song by one of my favorite bands, the Slip.  I’m not sure that the Slip even formally exist anymore, but two of the members, Brad and Andrew, now tour as the Barr Brothers, who are pretty excellent.  Saw them in Toronto in December, it was swell.

I “washed” the yeast from the primary of the high-citrus and stored in a sanitized growler in the fridge for about a week.  Once it got close to brewday, I decanted off some of the liquid, which left me with quite a large pitch of healthy, active french saison yeast(ies).

Grapefruit zest, yeast – ready to be pitched

Click for more…

Pretty typical auxiliary brewday setup 

While this Saison has some similarities to the last one, and they have common inspirations, they are quite different.  The ‘high-citrus’ was 7% (1.062ish OG), straw/pale in color, and flavored with several kinds of citrus zest and citra hops.

This one will be a lighter-bodied (4.6%, 1.042 OG) saison with far more specialty grains resulting in a red hue.  It is flavored with grapefruit zest and a heavy hand of galaxy hops.

This one will be a keg beer, and I’m thinking will be an awesome late summer/early fall beer to enjoy with some friends.

Here is the recipe:

Reddish Moon – Petite Red Saison
16-C Saison
Brewed: 8/10/12

Size: 6.2 gal
Efficiency: 75.0%
Attenuation: 90.0% (estimated)
Original Gravity: 1.043 (measured)
Terminal Gravity: 1.004 (estimated)

Color: 13.66 (5.0 – 14.0)
Alcohol: 4.76% (5.0% – 7.0%)
IBU: 17.3 (20.0 – 35.0)
ICU: 300 (estimated)


  • 6.5 lb Briess Pilsen Malt
  • 1.0 lb Red Wheat
  • 1.0 lb CaraRed Malt
  • 0.66 lb Caramel 40L Malt
  • 0.5 lb Crystal Wheat Malt
  • 0.25 lb Special B Malt
  • 1.0 oz Hallertauer Hersbrucker (4.5%) – added during boil, boiled 60 m
  • 1.0 oz Galaxy™ (13.5%) – added at flameout
  • 1.0 ea 3711 WYeast French Saison 3711 – second generation slurry
  • 1.0 ea Grapefruit zest.  Soaked in vodka, added to primary
  • 1.0 oz Galaxy™ (13.5%) – added dry to secondary fermenter
  • 1.0 ea Grapefruit zest.  Soaked in vodka, added to secondary


  • Mash in – Liquor: 3.5 gal; Strike: 165 °F; Target: 153 °F
  • Batch sparge – 4.5 gal sparge @ 168.0 °F, 15 m; Total Runoff: 7.2 gal


  • The Slip – misc live (obvs)
  • The Barr Brothers – self titled


  • Brewed on a Friday evening, by myself (wah wahh).
  • Collected 7.2 gallons of 1.039 wort
  • Post-boil was 6.33 gallons of 1.043 wort (right on the money).
  • Chilled to 73, transferred to primary and pitched yeast slurry from previous batch.
  • Also added the zest of one ruby red grapefruit, which was soaked in a small amount of vodka overnight.
  • 8/11: vigorous fermentation.  At 6.33 gallons, the primary is pretty full.  Put in a blowoff tube.  I think I’ll probably be glad I did later.  Smells wonderful.
  • Ambient temperature is in the low-mid 70’s this weekend.  Very glad for that as its a more favorable environment for myself and the yeast.  Should be optimal for primary fermentation until WNY gets back into the 80’s later this week – and with it, my apartment.

From → brewday

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