Brew # 11 - Balter XPA Clone Mk III

I wasn't happy with Mk II, so I'm giving the Balter XPA clone one last go

Brew # 11 - Balter XPA Clone Mk III


  • Morgan's Pacific Pale Ale kit (1.7kg)
  • 1.5kg Morgan's Master Malt Extra Pale Liquid Malt Extract
  • 250g Dextrose
  • Fermentis Safale US-05 (11.5g)
  • ~30g Amarillo hop pellets
  • ~40g Citra hop pellets
  • ~15g Centennial hop pellets


Brew day (Wednesday evening)

  • Filled basin with hot water and stood the two liquid malt extracts in to soften
  • Boiled ~300mL (less than previously) of cold filtered water and added to glass flask for yeast rehydration (see below)
  • Filled Ferm'us with cold filtered water to 4L mark (also less than before)
  • Boiled 1.7L of filtered water (that's the max my kettle can take) and added to Ferm'us
  • Boiled another 1L of water
  • Emptied the wort and liquid malt extract tins into the Ferm'us
  • Used the boiling water to rinse the tins
  • Lifted the Ferm'us and gave everything a good shake to mix the wort and LME and give a bit of oxygenation
  • Added 250g Dextrose (maybe a little bit more than that)
  • Gave another good shake
  • Topped up with more cold filtered water to 23L - I didn't need any additional boiling water and hit a final temp around ~27C, which is just about perfect
  • At this point I noticed a tiny slither of paper that I think must have come off the malt tin

OG: Not measured

Yeast prep & pitching

  • Allowed the temperature of the 300mL pre-boiled water (in the flask - see above) to chill to ~26C
  • Pitched the yeast to rehydrate for ~30 mins
  • Gently (no splashing) swirled the flask to suspend the yeast in the liquid
  • Poured the yeast mixture into the Ferm'us
  • Attached pressure release valve (PRV) to the pressure kit
  • Placed the Ferm'us into a temp controlled fridge at 20C (lower than normal to align with yeast recommendations)
  • Monitored every few hours and adjust the PRV to ensure the Ferm'us doesn't become over-pressurised

Primary Fermentation

  • Increased temp to 21C after ~18hrs as didn't seem to be much activity going on
  • Left alone for 4 days to ferment
  • PRV had to be adjusted over a few days to reduce big pressure build up
  • Seemed to be slower to ramp up fermentation this time - maybe because of slightly cooler temp
  • After 4 days (Sunday evening), there still seemed to be some good activity happening, so I didn't attach the collection bottle for trub collection

Trub Collection

  • When the primary fermentation appeared done (Monday), I attach a sanitised, empty collection bottle to start collecting the trub
  • Removed the collection bottle and dumped the trub after ~48 hours - until now, there still seemed to be some activity (nice Krausen still apparent)
  • Cleaned and sanitised the collection bottle ready for dry hopping

Dry Hopping

  • Add ~20g of Amarillo hop pellets (9.2% AA), ~40g of Citra hop pellets (13.9% AA), ~20g of Centennial hop pellets (8.8% AA), and ~20g of Cascade hop pellets (6.2% AA) via a sanitised collection bottle
  • The Ferm'us is still pressurised to ~10PSI, so need to open the valve slowly
  • Once open fully, you can see the hops pellets start to soak and expand and travel through the butterfly valve
  • There was quite a lot of dust from the pellets as I'd finished off four bags, so the Krausen took on a distinct green tinge
  • Before starting the crash cool I raised the temp on the controller to 22C - I'm going to leave it like this for 24 hours

Crash Cool

  • Using the temperature controller and brew fridge, start a slow crash cool (-0.3C every 2 hours for ~6 days) 24 hours after dry hopping
  • Still having problems getting most of the hops up into the beer
  • (Thurs 24th Dec) The beer is now in the 3.5-4C range, but before kegging I wanted to be sure I'd got some of those hop flavours. I released the gas from the Ferm'us, detached the collection bottle and poured the hops into the top. This might be a terrible move, but I don't want another keg of hopless beer.
  • I left this for ~48 hours, then reattached the collection bottle to pull the trub/hops from the bottom before kegging

Keg & Carbonate

  • Sanitised a keg and placed in keezer to chill
  • Pressurised to ~8PSI
  • Close-transfered the beer from Ferm'us to keg
Closed transfer from Fermentasaurus to keg
  • Placed the keg in the keezer
  • Attached CO2 at 39PSI to force carbonate for ~24 hrs
  • Allowed to stand for ~1 week to condition


  • Clear the top of the malt tins to ensure no paper shreds ends up in the wort
  • Dry hop from the top, not the collection bottle -or- rack to another FV with the hops added (I'm thinking maybe a snub-nose Ferm'us this time)
  • Detected the dreaded "clove" tastes when I tested what was left in the Fermus after transfer. Need to ensure there are no traces of Iodine left in the Fermus before starting a brew.