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Laser Salt Sandy Blonde Ale

Brewed: 05/11/2013   Bottled: 05/30/2013

It has become somewhat of a tradition for the Brew Model to brew on the AHA's Big Brew Day. In 2012, I told her to pick out a style of beer and I would help her come up with a recipe. She told me that she wanted something not-too-hoppy and not-too-dark (aka does not taste like coffee aka not a stout).

We also thought it would be nice to have this in a keg for a group camping trip we would be making to the Great Sand Dunes National Park in June.

She thought she might like a Saison. We found a saison for her to try at a local brew-pub and she decided that saison was not what she wanted to brew.

She looked through brewing books and magazines for ideas.

I posted for ideas on Facebook, Twitter , and the Mr. Beer forum post. I actually got a fair amount of feedback, but it was not all that useful. We needed to narrow things down, whereas the suggestions opened up new possibilities.

One of the styles of beer that the Beer Model was thinking of was an Irish Red. My last batch of Eric's Red had been the only beer in which I had used Maris Otter malt, and I thought I would like to use it again. I thought it might be fun to see what a lighter colored and less caramelly version of the beer would taste like.

I've also used Golden Naked Oats before in FTG, and thought that would be a good lighter substitute for the Cara-Red and Crystal malts I used in Eric's Red. Then, I pretty much simply looked through left-over hops I had in my freezer to get to a malty to balanced session beer.

And this is the recipe I came up with. The name "Laser Salt Sandy Blonde Ale" comes from a time years ago when my wife had told one of our friends that we were going "Blazer Camping in the Sand". Meaning, we were driving our blazer to the Great Sand Dunes National Park and camping there. The friend thought she had said that we were going "Laser Camping in the Salt".


This beer didn't last long. Everyone seemed to like it, and the gluten-sensitive people of the group loved being able to drink beer without feeling yucky.

Batch 2 was brewed up by the request of "Gretchen". Since GABF was coming up, I thought it would be a good beer to drop off for them taking our kids. It uses just CTZ for bittering and more Hallertauer hops at the end.

Batch 3 is to be brewed again the following year for the Great Sand Dunes trip, and I think it will probably be our Big Brew Day beer again. I decided to skip the double infusion this time to simplify the brew day, but other than that, it was the same beer as batch 2.

For posts about the Sand Dunes on my blog, see the Great Sand Dunes label.

For more information about this beer, you can check out the Laser Salt label on my blog.

Laser Salt Sandy Blonde --- Batch 3

Blonde Ale
Batch Size
5.50 gal
All Grain
Boil Size   7.76 gal
Brewhouse Efficiency   75.00   Boil Time   90 minutes

Recipe Characteristics

Recipe Gravity
1.051 SG
Estimated FG
1.011 SG
Recipe Bitterness
24.1 IBUs (Rager)
Alcohol by Volume
5.2 %
BU : GU   0.469        
Recipe Color
5.5 SRM
Measured OG:    1.051   Measured FG:    1.010
ADF:    80   Measured ABV:    5.4


Amt Name Type # %/IBU
3.00 g Salt (Mash 60.0 mins) Water Agent 1 -
2.00 g Baking Soda (Mash 60.0 mins) Water Agent 2 -
1.00 g Chalk (Mash 60.0 mins) Water Agent 3 -
9 lbs Pale Malt, Maris Otter (3.0 SRM) Grain 4 90.0 %
1 lbs Golden Naked Oats C15 (15.0 SRM) Grain 5 10.0 %
0.250 oz Columbus (Tomahawk) [17.60 %] - First Wort 90.0 min Hop 6 18.9 IBUs
0.50 tsp Irish Moss (Boil 10.0 mins) Fining 7 -
1.000 oz Crystal [3.30 %] - Boil 5.0 min Hop 8 2.1 IBUs
1.000 oz Hallertauer [4.60 %] - Boil 5.0 min Hop 9 3.0 IBUs
1.0 pkg Nottingham (Danstar #-) [23.66 ml] Yeast 10 -
1.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Primary 3.0 days) Other 11 -
5.00 ml Clarity-Ferm (Primary 2.0 weeks) Fining 12 -

Mash Profile

Mash Steps
Name Description Step Temperature Step Time
Mash In Add 12.50 qt of water at 163.7 F 152.0 F 60 min

Batch sparge with 2 steps (1.95gal, 3.88gal) of 168.0 F water
Recipe Notes

Salt additions to go from Beer Smith's Denver Water profile to Brewing Water Chemistry Calculator ( Pale / Light Profile. Or at least as close as I could come with what I had on hand.

Water Chem totals:
44.7 Ca; 8.5 Mg; 78.4 Na; 50.8 SO4; 85.4 Cl

Add all water additions to the mash.

Brewing Record

Brew Date:
Strike Temp:   168
Mash Temps:
 148. Adjust to 154. Down to 152 over mash
Pre-boil OG   1.042 (1.042 SG)   Pre-boil Vol   7.5 (7.76 gal)
Actual Mash Efficiency
Pitch Temp    64
Day 1: 
Day ... 
Day ... 

Click here to see previous recipes
Brewing Notes:
04/17/2013 esheppy
Updated recipe to use single infusion. Am planning on brewing this on the upcoming Big Brew Day with the Beer Model again.
05/08/2013 esheppy
Bought ingredients. Hopefully I will have time to brew Saturday.
05/11/2013 esheppy
Brewed this up today. Was not paying attention and ended up overfilling a pot during one of the sparges. Didn't seem to lose a whole lot according to my pre-boil gravity, but I added 2oz DME to compensate. Ended up with 5.25 gallons wort at 1.051OG. Pitched around 64.
05/12/2013 esheppy
Going strong. 64.
05/14/2013 esheppy
Flocculating HARD. Looks like the result will be very clear. 70F.
05/14/2013 esheppy
Gravity already down to 1.012. I think the sample tastes fantastic. Just the right amount of oat flavor and nice floral hop character.
05/30/2013 esheppy
Kegged tonight. FG down 1.010. Extremely clear. Great flavor. Carbing. Will drink next weekend.
06/18/2013 esheppy
Took camping at the dunes. Keg was empty by Sunday.
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