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Target has very poor storability - alpha acids decline at about twice the rate as something like Warrior. Added to this, it's very difficult to buy current season Target in home brewing quantities. These people sell them but only as cones. I get pellets from the US in 1kg packs. I find that I can dial in the bittering over a couple of batches, adjusting with iso alpha drops if necessary. Then they'll keep for a year or two vac packed at -20degC.
Regarding the wheat, Roger Protz (via The Homebrewer's Recipe Database) suggests 4% Wheat Malt and 8% Torrified wheat in both Spitfire and Bishops Finger. In a later revision Roger suggest a total of 10% cereal adjuncts , but doesn't break down the individual components. Also Halcyon is suggested rather than Marris which gives a biscuit rather than a nutty touch. Both are too subtle for me, so I stick with whatever Pale Ale malt is on hand. He also suggests that both are dry hopped (presumably with Goldings), but that would be the cask version.
Yeah the target freshness is missing in my recipe but otherwise its bloody close....
If only I could get some fresh uk hops... Brambling Cross is another I would like to try fresh
Even the commercial suppliers in the UK don't have fresher than 2016, but Hops Direct in Yakima have 2016 UK Target, Bramling and Savinjski at US$5 per pound.
Are you sure it the Target that's missing? I just found the Michael Jackson Pocket Guide to Beer (6th Ed). That states that bottle conditioned Spitfire is dry hopped with EKG. That would contribute to the spicy, dry finish that is characteristic of Kent Ales.
Finally got back on the brewing wagon after more than a year off, this time with temp control! This is another version of a hoppy XPA style recipe that has worked well in the past. Named in honour of Rocket Lab, and because I missed the launch while I was brewing it.
"Still Testing" (Golden Pash III)
25L into the fermenter
60 min mash at 67C, 73C mashout, 60 min boil, 80C whirlpool 15 min
2t gypsum in the mash, 1t CaCl in the boil
US-05 rehydrated, ferment at 17C
3.6 kg Golden Promise
2.0 kg Vienna
0.5 kg Wheat malt
20g Centennial at 60 min
25g each Mosaic & Citra just before flameout
25g each Mosaic, Citra, Nelson Sauvin at 80C whirlpool
50g each Mosaic & Citra, 25g each Sauvin & Kohatu dry hop
That looks great - yep I'll sing out when this is done.