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brewing honey rye ale

Honey Rye Ale


A while back, I’d created a recipe for an Amber Rye Ale.  Overall, I was pretty happy with it, and wanted to come back to it eventually.  Recently, I’d been wanting to play with some honey malt, and felt like this would be a great way to do it.  The original Amber Rye was based on a Fat Tire Clone, and the honey malt seemed like a nice addition that flavor profile.

The brew was made differently than usual, which made it extra exciting.  I did the mash at home, then traveled to a friend’s house to boil with 2 others in on his basement brewing setup.  After all this time, it was the first time I’d brewed at the same time as other people, so it was really cool.

All-Grain Recipe: Honey Rye Ale



  • 8 lb. – American 2-row
  • 2 lb. – Rye Malt
  • 1 lb. – Munich Malt
  • 1 lb. – Honey Malt
  • 8 oz. – Victory Malt

Hop Additions / Boil Additions:

  • .6 oz. – Magnum (14.5%) – added during boil, boiled 60 min
  • 1 Whirlfloc Tablet & Wort Chiller – added during boil, boiled 10 min
  • .5 oz. – Crystal (3.2%) – added during boil, boiled 5 min



  • Safale US-05

Additional Details / Notes

  • Style based on American Amber Ale
  • OG 1.056 / TG 1.010
  • 6.01% ABV | Color: 11.8 °SRM | ~33.8 IBU’s
  • Brewed 12/02/12, Secondary 12/30/12, Kegged 01/13/13
  • Mash Temp: ~152°, Thickness: 1.3 qt/g, Efficiency 67%, Attenuation 82%

Brewing the Honey Rye Ale


The Mash. Totally missed my goal of 152°.  Mashed in 4 gallons of water at 164° for a thickness of 1.3 qt/gal.  Rest for 1 hour, drain in to brew kettle for one hour.

The Boil. Indoor boil, in friend’s basement. Added Whirlfloc and the Wort Chiller near the end of the boil.

Cooling. Used the wort chiller hooked up to indoor shop sink. Added 30-40 seconds of oxygen.

Fermenting. Basement closet. About 63° ambient temp.

Racking to Secondary & Bottling. Skipped the secondary on this batch (not sure why).  Kegged entire batch.

Drinking the Honey Rye


Pretty pleased with this one.  I love the honey malt with the rye.  I think the two play really well together, and it’s a combo I’d like to revisit.  The flavor is really nice, but the balance is shifted a little far in the sweet direction.  Looking back at the recipe, I need to shift percentages quite a bit.  I’d only used 64% 2-row, and I think that needs to get around 80, or higher.  Rye was 16%, which is probably okay, but I might increase that with the 2-row.  Munich/honey/victory clocked in 20%, which (in hindsight) is crazy high.  I’d keep those around 10% next time.

This one was a crowd pleaser.  Easy to drink, not too dark, not too hoppy.  A little sweet, but that doesn’t bother most people.


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