Tuesday, May 26, 2009

APA Brew Day

So this was a week of many brewing firsts for me. It started with my joining the Arizona Society of Homebrewers, a local homebrew club. We did a tour of a local distributor's warehouse and sampled some beers. I also won part of their monthly raffle and chose some hops as my prize: 1 oz whole leaf Warrior and 1 oz whole leaf Pallisades. I decided that I should brew something up using these hops for next month's meeting, and picked an APA. It was the last of the styles that I wanted to rebrew from my early failures. In order to brew, I needed to move my American Wheat out of the fermentor and into a keg. I also was interested in finishing my stir plate to make a starter for this beer. I worked through this in before the weekend and got around to brewing on Memorial Day. I was sick and tired of the continual threat of boil overs, so I grabbed a fan and used it to majorly reduce the risk. Batch turned out OK, but I can say I am not a huge fan of using whole hops in the boil as it made racking a bit difficult.

Labels: ,

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I have finally reached a point where I am ready to go back and rebrew some stuff. There are still some things that I want to try, but I want to start eliminating things that I didn't enjoy and think about having something like a regular rotation. Before I am willing to commit, there are 3 beers that I brewed in the past that I would consider failures, and feel that I should try and get them right before I decide that I don't want them in the rotation. The 3 are my DIPA, American Wheat and an APA (actually it was an EPA, but that is almost splitting hairs). I am going to start with the American Wheat. I consider this the closest thing to a drain pour I have ever brewed and I am sure that I could be a real crowd pleaser. So I am planning on brewing on Sunday, even though my fermentor is still full as of today. I will rack my brown to a keg tonight, and I will clean out my other carboy on Saturday so that I will be ready to go on Sunday. I am also thinking about bottling up the remainder of my mild. I still don't have my 5th tap, so I have little problems moving ahead with staying one keg down. I am also thinking about bottling off the rest of this keg of cider and move on to my Halloween batch. Plus I am ready to start another cider and will need the keg space for aging.

Labels: ,

Monday, May 04, 2009

Nut Brown Brew Day

I wanted to brew yesterday and Sharon wanted to take Mary to try out a church, so I got up at 6 am to brew. I actually started the night before with setup and steeping my specialty grains, along with filling the kettle. This way I rolled out of bed, started the burner and I was moving. Got the water to a boil before 6:45 and was cooling the batch by 7:40. Cooling was a bit more problematic. The ground water temp has risen and I only had a single gallon jug of ice form my recirculating ice water system. In the end I got the wort down to around 75 and then tossed it in the fridge. I was done with cleanup and everything by 9. As of 7 PM there was still no activity in the fermenter.

I had hoped to be writing about a finished kegerator, but I have 2 outstanding issues. One of the taps I got was bad and I will be sending it to Northern Brewer for a new one. The second issue was that I was ordering tailpiece assemblies from BeverageFactory.com, but they haven't even shipped it after placing the order a week ago. I will go back to checking the local homebrew shops to see if I can't pick the parts up and cancel my order, with a hope that I will have a kegerator missing one tap by the weekend.

Tasted the Lefse Blonde last night and it has really come around with some cold conditioning. I really enjoyed it and it will be quite tasty for this late spring, early summer.

Labels: ,