Prohibition?!

Jamie pours out beer

Don’t worry everyone, you’re good to go. Jamie and I were just doing a little tidying up before Wednesday night rolls around and decided to try some of the beer that has been sitting here since the spring. Somehow our Rye Pale Ale wound up kinda funky, probably had to do with the kegerator being unplugged to conserve energy. I had to close my eyes as Jamie poured out about 15 gallons of beer. Have no fear though, the brew lab is back up and running, ready to produce some high quality beers.  We do have about 7 gallons of stellar Wit bier that was hanging out in cold storage.

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An Unexpected (well, to me at least) Wednesday Visit

Apologies that this post is a couple days late, I’ve been busy dammit!  But anyway, we had the pleasure of having one of our good friends, Doug,  in town from Cali last Wednesday night. Doug is our west-coast amigo (and, like, one of two people who comment on the blog) who from time to time enjoys a couple of our brews- at least that’s what he tells us!  So, needless to say,  Wednesday evening ended up being a “guerrilla tasting party” when a group of our best buddies converged on the beer cave to see Duggie.  It was truly a good time,and I hope everyone enjoyed it as much as I did!Doug and SteveDoug tries real hard to pour a beer

Supplementary to the main subject of the post is news on the Rye Pale.  It ended up being just slightly high in FG so, unfortunately it was still a little sweet from the unconverted sugars.  Also, and somewhat oddly, I had kegged and carbonated it as usual and according to our carbonation chart, but for some reason enough CO2 did not absorb into the beer. Pretty frustrating considering the recipe is on the right track and the carbonation level would have made it all the better.  I wonder if the temperature of the beer during the carbonation process made it slower or less effective?

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Rye Update

OH YEAH! About the Rye brewing last Wednesday. Everything went pretty well. I will say, it is A LOT more work by yourself. And a lot heavier when lifting things… I did hit all my mash temps though, produced a beautiful golden/copper color, and it smelled great the other day when I checked on it fermenting.

The only things that went poorly were 1: getting the wort from the kettle to the carboy. Pellets make it tough, man. I ended up having use the racking cane and consequently sucked up more trub than I wanted. It settled out nicely though. I think I can clear it off the top. And 2: the boil-off was more extreme than I predicted. Almost 2 gallons in an hour. I guess you gotta learn from doing and from your particular equipment what affects what and revise it in the recipe. 

Regardless, I was actually extremely pleased and more confident after the brew. Even the numbers were very close, which has not been a big concern to me until recently. But I found a happy medium between the Art and the Science of brewing and I feel like I opened a new door of experience with this brew!

updates from the front line

Looks like it’s been a while since I posted anything… Blerg. Sorry! I guess the weather, short days, economy, and my receding hairline have really put a damper on the mood.

In discussion the past couple of weeks, we have figured out that brewing every other week is perfect for us and the tastings. The “in-between” weeks will be used for experimental brews when possible and catching up on LOST. (you think I’m joking…)

Anyway, I’m using this week to brew a different Pale recipe I’ve worked on a couple of days. It’s actually a Rye Pale that should be light and crisp with a subtle hop spice and plenty of aroma. If all goes according to plan, it may be a very good spring recipe that everyone of all beer tastes should enjoy. 

There’s no tasting this week but the following week will be good to go and we’ll be brewing the Belgian-style Wit! I promise I’ll try to post more (with pictures) and follow up on results for the Rye brew.

Until then enjoy these pictures of Rob and I doing some cleaning…

rob-and-steve-clean-fridge

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