Barack Obama is certainly one of the most controversial Presidents of the United States of America. However, I think that people on both sides of the aisle can agree that starting the official White House brewing team was a really great idea.
In 2011, Obama made a serious power move by buying a home brew kit. This kicked off a series of events that led to the White House brewing their own line of beers full-time in the White House Kitchen.
News of this epic maneuver broke and for some reason the White House decided to hoard their little beer recipes to themselves. It wasn’t until September 1st, 2012 that the White House actually released the information on their kickin brews on their website. This was all due to a couple of home brewers by the name of Scott Talkov and Brodie Burks who submitted a freedom of information act request to get the recipes.
Cheers to you Scott and Brodie!
The White House Honey Ale recipe is a partial mash beer recipe. This means that most of the fermentable sugars will be from malt extract. The rest of the sugars will come from a smaller amount of grains that you will mash.
I would say this is an intermediate level beer to make, but on the easier end of the intermediate spectrum. You shouldn’t have any problems making this fine beer.
- 2 3.3LB Cans of Light Malt Extract
- 1LB of Dry Light Malt Extract
- 12 oz Crushed Amber Crystal Malt
- 8 oz Biscuit Malt
- 1LB White House Honey (Wildflower Honey works fine)
- 1 1/2 oz Kent Goldings Hop Pellets
- 1 1/2 oz Fuggles Hop Pellets
- 2 tsp Gypsum
- 1 pkg Windsor Dry Ale Yeast Package
- 3/4 cup Corn Sugar for priming
- Take 1 1/2 gallons of water and pour it in a pot. Place the grains in a hop bag. Steep the grains in the water for a half hour at 155 degrees. After the half hour, remove the grains from the water.
- Stir in the two cans of light malt extract and the pound of dry light malt extract. Bring the mix to a boil.
- Add the 1 1/2 oz Kent Goldings hop pellets and the 2 tsp of Gypsum in to the pot. Boil for 45 minutes.
- For the last minute of the boil, add the 1 1/2 oz Fuggles hop pellets to the pot.
- Add the honey and boil for another 5 minutes.
- Pour the wort into your primary fermenter. Pour chilled water into the fermenter to top off at 5 gallons.
- When your wort chills to between 70-80 degrees, pitch your yeast. Attach your airlock to your fermenter
- Primary fermentation will take around 5 days. After primary fermentation, siphon your mix into a secondary fermenter. Let ferment for around 14 days til completion.
- When fermentation is complete, it’s time to bottle. Take your corn sugar and dissolve it in 2 pints of boiling water for 15 minutes. Pour the sugary mix into your bottling bucket. Siphon the beer from the fermenter on top of the sugar-water. Make sure the priming sugar solution is distributed evenly into the beer. Siphon the mix into your bottles. Let your bottles sit for 2-3 weeks at around 75 degrees.
- Crack open some brews and enjoy!
The Secret Ingredient
The only ingredient in this mix that is kind of vague is the “White House Honey”. I’m not sure what kind of honey White House Honey is exactly, but I would just use a wildflower honey. Assuming the honey is from the apiaries on the White House, the bees there would be harvesting from a bunch of different plants from the area. Since wildflower honey is composed of different honey depending on where you get it, it’s best to assume this is the honey that would work best since we don’t know the particulars of the flowers in the area. Wildflower honey is what I used and it worked perfectly and tasted great.
That being said, we’re a bit on the extreme end here at Viking Smash Brewing, so the next time around we’ll experiment with some different honey. Perhaps I’ll throw in some buckwheat next time around to compare.
There you have it folks. All that is left is to get started on your own White House Honey Ale. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll have your own batch ready to drink!
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