Mar. 18, 2013

A beer-packed day

  • Brewed a Black IPA for the first time. Used the Conan yeast that I cultured from a couple cans of Heady Topper - fermentation began in about two hours. Insanity.
  • Kegged an (infected) Imperial Amber Ale.
  • While trying to bleach the infection out of the carboy previously containing the Amber, I learned that hot water should never be poured into a Better Bottle.
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  • Dry hopped a White IPA (no idea how I’m going to get the hops out of the bottleneck and into the beer).
  • Learned that I came in third place in the Light Hybrids category in a local comp.
  • Remembered that I have this homebrewing blog that I never ever update.
Aug. 13, 2012

There’s so much flaked corn in the Dark American Lager I just brewed that it smells like a kid’s Saturday morning cereal.

Jul. 4, 2012

4 Empty Carboys

Like most sane people, I find it unbearable to even turn on the stove when it’s 100 degrees outside. Because of that, I haven’t brewed since my Berliner Weiss/Smoktoberfest double brewing weekend way back in May. The beer schedule I created in January is backed up about 6 or 7 beers - mostly wheats and American styles to enjoy immediately and a couple of bigger beers to be aged until the winter.

I finally gave in and turned on the air conditioner. Now I’m ready to start playing catch up - over the next four days I need to bottle two Barleywines, do….something to a Berliner Weiss (add Lactic, possibly bottle, maybe add pickle juice to a gallon?), figure out where I’m going with this mead, brew a Biere de Garde, brew an American Rye, brew a Braggot, figure out where to put all of this so I can free my fridge up for another split batch experiment in a couple of weeks.

May. 26, 2012

Just doughed in my Smoked Oktoberfest (with home-smoked Munich). The mash smells bacon and campfire.

May. 11, 2012

Hopping my priming solution

My American Wheat came out a lot less hop-forward than I had hoped. No time for dry hopping since I need this fermenter for the Kolsch I’m brewing up right now. My fix? Throw some Ahtanum hop dust that I picked up from BK Homebrew for free into the priming solution. I’m gonna strain it out before it goes into the bottling bucket. Hopefully I’ll end up with a nice, fresh hop aroma.

May. 5, 2012

I’m working today so I won’t be able to celebrate National Homebrew Day by brewing. Instead, I attempted (unsuccessfully) to force carbonate a keg for the first time, racked a beer to secondary, and adding port-soaked oak cubes to my Russian Imperial Stout.

Speaking of the RIS, it’s almost five months old and smells delicious.

Apr. 29, 2012

Is it still considered a SMaSH (single malt and single hop beer) if you use Falconer’s Flight 7C’s which is technically a mash up of 7 different “C” hops? Deep thoughts.

Here’s the recipe for today which is basically an excuse to try out a new hop:

I’ve also bought Simcoe, Amarillo, and Zythos to try them all out for the first time.

Apr. 20, 2012

Two Beers Enter, One Beer Leaves

Finally narrowed down my Brooklyn Wort entry for next Saturday’s comp. Since bold flavors tend to catch the crowd’s attention, I’m going with my Breakfast Brown (now titled Get Up! A James Brown Ale) instead of the Amber (named Tiffani-Amber Thiessen, of course).

With that epic, dramatic decision out of the way, I’m heading out to Amish country for the weekend to barbecue, drink too much wine, and try my hand at smoking malt. I’ve got a pound of Munich Malt, a pound of Alderwood chips, and absolutely no idea what I’m doing. This will work out well.

Apr. 3, 2012

Received my score back from the Hudson Valley Homebrew comp. My Vienna Lager received a 34 out of 50, which is not a bad score but not a winner; it was probably just a couple points shy of taking third. The comments I received from the three judges all basically agreed that it was an enjoyable beer that had a bit too much hop aroma and a bit too much dryness for the style. I’d love to rebrew this one and improve it in the fall.

Mar. 24, 2012
Sparging the Oud Bruin. The wort has a definite tang to it.

Sparging the Oud Bruin. The wort has a definite tang to it.

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