Saxe-Coburg Bitter

Very, very loosely based on this recipe for Kentish Best Bitter. I got the chocolate malt for free at a meeting of my homebrew club.

Saxe-Coburg-Gotha is the old name for the House of Windsor, the current royal family of Great Britain. I called it that 'cos of the Munich malt, the Mount Hood hops, and the Windsor yeast used for fermentation. It was just too clever to resist.


Batch size: 5 gallons

Grain bill:

  • 4 lb pale malt
  • 2 lb Munich 30
  • 8 oz organic Crystal 60
  • 2 oz pale chocolate malt
  • 1 lb Thai palm sugar


  • 20 g homegrown Mount Hood @ 60
  • 80 g homegrown Mount Hood @ 20

Yeast: Windsor


October 15, 2010: My usual overnight mashing. 7 gallons to 75C/167F (new floating thermometer gives temp in both; whee!), which dropped to 70C/158F. Perfect! 20 minutes later it was at 69C/156F, which is even better.

Brew Day

October 16, 2010: Settled to 56C/132F overnight. 6.25 gal yield. Boiled some of the first runnings to caramelize a bit...maybe 2 litres or so. Hydro sample says 1.032.

Changed the hop schedule to the above to try and duplicate the success of the Triumph Street IPA.

Final yield: 5.25 gallons at 1.042. Pitched the yeast with the help of my capable assistants. The wort is darker than I expected.


This finished quickly...which, now that I look at the info for the yeast, is to be expected. This was fermented in my 5 gallon glass carboy, so I lost a certain amount to the blowoff tube. Must get another Better Bottle at some point.


November 27, 2010: FG 1.007 -- so 4.8% ABV. 90 g of dextrose, and just about exactly 5 gallons yield. Sample tastes a little sour -- is it infected? The more I taste it, the more I think it is. I'll bottle this, but I don't have much hope. And I broke my hydrometer, dammit!


This turned out to be infected. Dammit! Tangy, almost over-carbed taste. Very foamy in the mouth. My wife said it's a mix of sweet and sour, and then the carb cuts through all that. Tried stirring it to get rid of the carbonation; now it's just sour.

Bleah. A write-off.