Monday, March 31, 2008

Weekend Brewing Notes

I moved my Kolsch into a keg for a cold secondary. This was my first attempt at fermenting in a real controlled chamber (converted dorm fridge) and my first lagering. No trip to the LHBS meant skipping my planned attempt at a Wit, but I have hopes for getting it done next weekend. Toped off an Apfelwein I am working on with a bit more juice as it looks like there was extra headroom in the carboy and I found that there is basically no krausen in this. That makes one week in for my traditional apfelwein, 2 weeks in for my really strong cider with 5 lbs brown sugar and a dry ale yeast, and the completion of a 2 week primary on my Kolsch. I am hoping to give the 2 week cider another 2 before racking to a keg and then starting another batch. I am hoping to get a bit ahead on my cider production so that I have a steady supply and an opportunity to age some properly, with back sweetening with a couple of cans of frozen concentrate in the keg until then. For now, I still have my great cider on keg and a pretty good beer to drink. I had a glass of each on Friday night, and continue to be happy with my progress so far and am looking forward to tasting some of my more recent work soon.

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Monday, March 17, 2008

Cider Tasting and Brewing

So I finally kegged up my cider that I brewed last Spring. The nose had a nice apple to it. The taste was dry with a very light apple flavor. There was a hint of brown sugar in the taste and the aftertaste had quite a bit of brown sugar to it. I thought this was from the addition of 2 cups of brown sugar that I used primarily to bloom the yeast rather than for taste, but...I also kegged up my test batch of Raspberry Apple cider. This was made with just under 1 gallon of unfiltered organic apple juice and about half a can of sweetened raspberry puree, no brown sugar or anything. The nose to that one has quite a bit of raspberry to it. Similar dry taste with just a hint of raspberry and...brown sugar. Not real sure what is causing this. I will do some research, but I am not complaining. They both tasted great and I started to make an altered version of apfelwein where I swapped out the corn sugar with brown sugar and used an ale yeast rather than a wine yeast. If it is as good as what I already have, I will be brewing this year round.

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Northern Brewer Kolsch

I got back into brewing this weekend. I ordered up a kolsch kit from Northern Brewer and since I solved my fermentation temperature and lagering problems I (built a keggerator and converted my dorm fridge into a fermentation chamber) I was ready to go again. This was a very easy kit to work with, and I used their instructions for a late extract addition that should help lighten up my brews (which have been real dark) and remove the homebrew tang. I have the wort fermenting at 60 degrees F in my fridge, and I plan to leave it there for 2 weeks then move it into a keg for secondary lager conditioning for 4 more weeks. Kolsch for May sounds good. I am thinking about following this up with a Wit recipe. Which could be ready for May as well. I am trying to get a supply going for a party on Memorial Day.

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Great AZ Beer Fest

Rather than reposting my comments about this festival, I am linking to my comments here on the Beer Advocate website. I also forgot my camera, so no pictures.

Boo Hoo.

Well maybe just 1.

And another.


Tuesday, March 04, 2008

My Beer IQ

I found this "quiz" on someone elses blog. Not really a much of a beer quiz as opposed to a brand recognition quiz. Never the less:

Test Your Beer IQ

Your Score: 100%
You're a Beer Genius

You know everything there is to know about beer. All hail the Beer Genius.

Personality Test Results

Click Here to Take This Quiz
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