Jocelyn and Chris Arndt are two siblings that grew up refining their modern take on the classic rock genre. Jocelyn’s voice is pure and immaculate. Chris’s guitar playing is barbed and proactive, dipped in blues and jam. They make beautiful music together, and they both have awesome hair (essential for successful musicians). The 22-and-23-year old rockers also like to brew. They have a long-standing tradition celebrating the holiday season specifically with a secret family homebrew they call Fat Santa Christmas Ale. The duo was kind enough to share it with us.
Brewed at the Arndt family home, this pair of Harvard-grads have created a seasonal, full-bodied brown ale. A smooth, spicy sweetness with notes of floral hops, cinnamon and clove for a hint of holiday bite is rounded out with faintly detectable vanilla, coupled perfectly with holiday treats and ugly sweaters.
Fat Santa Christmas Ale
An Arndt Family Recipe
- 6 lbs of light malt extract powder
- 3 lbs of amber malt extract powder
- 1 lbs of dark malt extract powder
- 5 oz of Columbus (split into 1- and 2.2-oz portions)
- 3 oz of Citra (split into 1- and 2-oz portions)
- Lallemand BRY-97 American West Coast Ale yeast
Water and ice:
- 4.6 gal of high-quality filtered water (treated as necessary for brewing)
- 8 lbs of food-grade ice
- Spices (in mesh bag or stocking):
- 2 cinnamon sticks, crushed
- 1 tsp whole cloves
- 8 to 10 coriander seeds
- 1/2 tsp allspice
- 1 tsp real vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean, split
Do a day ahead: Boil 1 lb of light malt extract in 1 qt of water until foam breaks, stirring and adjusting temperature as necessary. Keep in sterilized vessel. Allow to cool to 75 to 80 degrees F and add yeast to make a starter. Cover with rubber glove and seal with rubber band
- Boil 4.6 gal. Add remaining malt extract and bring to a boil until foam breaks, stirring and adjusting temperature as necessary
- Start a 60-minute timer. When starting the timer, add 1 oz of Columbus hops
- At 15 minutes left, add 2 oz of Columbus and 1 oz of Citra hops
- At 10 minutes left, add spice bag. *If using vanilla extract, add that separate of spice bag. If using vanilla bean, scrap each side of the split bean for seeds and put seeds and husk in spice bag
- At 3 minutes left, add remaining hops (2 oz of Columbus and 2 oz of Citra)
- When timer runs out, pour wort into primary fermentation vessel with 8 lbs of food-grade ice. Chill wort by placing vessel in ice bath or using wort chiller
- Pitch starter when wort reaches 80 degrees F. Allow six days of primary fermentation.
- Rack through nylon or cloth filter screen to remove large solids into keg. Push through 1 micron filter to remove yeast into second keg.
- Charge at 25 lbs CO2 for three days. Turn CO2 down to 8 to 10 lbs, wait one to two weeks and serve at 45 to 50 degrees F.
This beer is best enjoyed while rocking out to this.