GO HERE AND LOOK AT THESE PIPES. Even if you don't smoke, you have to appreciate these as works of art. I just ordered one from him yesterday... hes making one custom for me. Amazing dude to work with, even sent me pictures of the block of briar that will eventually be my new awesome (huge, apparently) pipe.
Feels good. 3 fermenters and 3 kegs all full of beer. I ended having to dump a terrible stout that I had in one of my kegs... first time Ive ever had to do that. O well, I guess there is a first time for everything. Ill never use Windsor yeast again.
Im happy about this mainly because now I will have to kill a keg before I can keg another. I'm hoping it will force me to let my beers age longer then I have been lately. Ever since Ive gotten a kegging system I have been pretty much racking from the primary once I hit my TG straight to the keg, force carbing, and drinking. The beer has been great, don't get me wrong, but in the back of my mind I always know that it could be BETTER if I had given a couple more weeks. And it takes one dude a long time to drink 3 gallons of beer... especially when this particular dude has 3 different beers to choose from, so it looks like I won't be actually brewing another batch for at least a couple weeks.
Next project I believe will be a box for all my beers to go in, with pimp lookin taps and everything. Hopefully Ill get started on that this week!
Recently I was thinking about my buddy Kenny and an idea he had. He was talking about how there basically is no good non-alcoholic beer, and he was right... the choice is pretty much O'Doul's, and even if you find another kind it will definitely just be a bad lager. I was in the mood to experiment, so I grabbed the gallon of winter warmer I had in the fridge and decided to give it a go.
I love helping my friends. Every time they tell me a new story or crack open a new brew, its like Im there drinking it with them. Hurray for friends helping friends!
Second, here is the beautiful grossness that makes beer the wonderful thing that it is. Back in the day, when no one knew how beer fermented and turned into a foamy, bubbling brew, it was called Godisgood. Nowadays, we just call it yeast, and here is my latest harvest of Nottingham.
I did this last night in a hurry and didn't have time to take pictures and blog about it, but Ill be kegging a tripel this week so Ill do a step by step then.
Happy Valentine's day!
Ever since I built my converted cooler MT, I have had sparging problems. I was using a mesh paint straining bag as my false bottom, and it was just too much trouble to get it to sit high enough in the MT. I was always burning myself with sparging water, spilling wort, getting stuck sparges... nightmare brews.
Epically epic brew day today. First, I got a great deal on a new fermenter and brew paddle... 12 bucks for both!
Good news, hop heads! I discovered (for myself, as Im sure its been done a million times over) a way to get your hop fix in the morning without the risk of being labeled as an alcoholic! I call it, HOFFEE. Its like coffee, but with a smack of hops to it! Do you love hops? Do you sometimes have fantasies of waking up to a nice fresh double IPA? If so, read on, because this is for you!
|Amount||Item||Type||% or IBU|
|4 lbs 3.2 oz||Pale Liquid Extract (8.0 SRM)||Extract||86.60 %|
|8.0 oz||Caramel/Crystal Malt - 30L (30.0 SRM)||Grain||10.31 %|
|2.4 oz||Special B Malt (180.0 SRM)||Grain||3.09 %|
|0.31 oz||Fuggles [6.00 %] (60 min)||Hops||9.6 IBU|
|0.31 oz||Goldings, East Kent [5.70 %] (30 min)||Hops||7.8 IBU|
|0.31 oz||Fuggles [6.00 %] (20 min)||Hops||6.4 IBU|
|0.31 oz||Goldings, East Kent [5.70 %] (5 min)||Hops||2.0 IBU|
I used Nottingham dry yeast. Overall the brew went great. I really enjoyed the simplicity of the process, it took less than half the time of an all grain brew and I had way less of a mess to clean up afterwards. If it tastes good, I'm going to continue to brew them every once in a while for easy beers or on days that I really just don't feel like doing a full fledged mash. Anyways, heres a step by step on how to brew a batch of brewski's from extract!
I just kinda realized I have never done an extract brew. Everyone starts at extract, but from my first batch to now Ive always been all grain. Its like I skipped a step, and now I recommended all grain to everyone without even really knowing the pros and cons of extract brewing first hand!
I think I might do one sometime soon and post a how-to. Also, now that I can hit my target gravities and mash temps perfectly, I might even continue to brew with extracts for the simpler styles that don't have a lot of specialty grains and the big ass beers that take a million pounds of malt. If I like how it tastes, why should I continue to make it harder on myself by fussing with grains and sparging and all that jazz?
Yes, thats what Ill do. Sometime between today and Friday, I will make my first extract brew!
I have been giving a lot of thought to brewery names lately. I think my favorite thus far is Dead Stuff. It sounds weird, but I would name all my beers after things/ideas/places that are dead. It works really well when you get creative...
-Pilsner! (since the US of A ruined the style for the most part)
-MLK Stout (lol, Andrew's idea.)
- The Roman Empire Ale
Good times. Makes naming beer fun, I think I found the winner.
So my buddy Andrew and I have been brewing together lately. He just got into it, and last night we cracked open the 2nd brew we ever made together. Holy crap is it awesome. Its a milk coffee stout, and I really can't believe how great it turned out. If anyone gets a chance, give it a try! Here's the recipe:
|Amount||Item||Type||% or IBU|
|9 lbs||Pale Malt (2 Row) UK (3.0 SRM)||Grain||59.02 %|
|1 lbs 8.0 oz||Black (Patent) Malt (500.0 SRM)||Grain||9.84 %|
|1 lbs 4.8 oz||Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM)||Grain||8.52 %|
|1 lbs 3.2 oz||Caramel/Crystal Malt - 40L (40.0 SRM)||Grain||7.87 %|
|8.0 oz||Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM)||Grain||3.28 %|
|8.0 oz||Chocolate Malt (450.0 SRM)||Grain||3.28 %|
|1.00 oz||Fuggles [4.50 %] (60 min)||Hops||13.1 IBU|
|1.00 oz||Fuggles [4.50 %] (30 min)||Hops||10.0 IBU|
|1.00 oz||Goldings, East Kent [5.00 %] (5 min)||Hops||2.9 IBU|
|1 lbs 4.0 oz||Milk Sugar (Lactose) (0.0 SRM)||Sugar||8.20 %|
You suck and I hate you. You taste bad, smell bad, and suck at doing your job. I will never use you again.
Is an awesomely violent, healthy fermentation! Here's a video of my latest brew doing its thing. Its funny... if I ever saw that without knowing what it was, I wouldn't drink it in a million years. But now when I look at it, I can see past the grossness and think those great words coined by Homer Simpson... "mmm, beer." Godisgood is good.
Today I kegged my cinnamon stout. The brewing itself was a nightmare that I believe was sent upon me by the devil himself. I could feel a legion of his minions laughing crazily at my misfortune as I:
Today was a great day. Not only because it was brew day, but because I had made up my mind before I started that I would blog about it. I have not done so in quite a while, and I miss it. So, when I got home from the brew shop, I made sure the camera had plenty of fresh batteries and took a picture of my next beer-to-be!
I drove home, pet the Buster, and fired up the strike water.