Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Blonde in a bottle

Blueberry blonde that is. I will be throwing Kyle and RP's blueberry request in their proper bottles on Friday hopefully with a little help. It will be 10 days in secondary but it was pretty clean and clear when I racked it, so hopefully she is a ready. I might brew if my buddy Alec comes down just so he can see the whole "process".

Friday, June 24, 2011

Brewing up a monster

So I've decided I will do some brewing tomorrow and it will be the very first sample/test batch of one of the beers I would like to make as an actual brewery. Starting off as a big bold American barleywine and then taking things from there. To get this one where I want it will take several batches and probably several years in the making, but for a delicious beer...... it's worth every day spent. The brewmaster at the LBS said he hadn't heard of what I was attempting so he was pretty intrigued and he will be my speed dial in case I need some obscure brew knowledge.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bottle for sure

I will be bottling up the Devil's Duvel clone this weekend and I might brew up a mystery beer given the chance but I'm not sure yet. I forgot to bring home the 18" paper the Cap' gave me to cover my carboys to help prevent UV light damage to my bubbling brews. With them being made of clear glass or plastic it's a wonder that more brews don't get damaged.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Our roadtrip

Somewhere along the line I forgot to post about the beer vacation that Suzi and I took 2 weeks ago. It was fun it was delicious but I didn't pick up as much beer making knowledge as I had hoped. I could have sworn that I learned more at the Ommegang tour and I wasn't even brewing then but oh well.

We started off in Rehobath Beach, DE at the Dogfish Head brewpub on the main drag. The food was great but the beer was even better. The brewpub is where DFH distills their liquors that are also sold under the DFH brand. Onto the beers, we ended up doing 2 dinners at the pub Tuesday and Wednesday nights. We had the Sah'Tee, 60 minute IPA, 90 minute IPA, a World Wide Stout from '07, Raison D'Etre, and a couple samples of things like the Lawnmower and Shelter Pale Ale.

The one beer that really stood out at the brewpub was the Worldwide Stout from 2007. At 18% ABV it can and will age much longer but when I had mine is was almost like a tawny port in the glass. So much malt flavor it makes your head spin, lol. My runner up for great beer at the pub was the Sah'Tee on tap. It was a recipe from 9th century Finland that DFH brewed for the first time in '08. They use hot river rocks to warm the wort instead of boiling it. True story.

We made our way over to the DFH brewery in Milton, DE on Wednesday afternoon and was shocked at how many people were there. Some were going on the tour like us but most were just people going and coming to work. They do a quicky tour of the brewery and then do a five sample presentation afterwards. Our five were the Festina Peche, 60 minute, Theobroma and the Sah'Tee with a very small sample of the Palo Santo Marron thrown onto the end. The Palo Santo was my favorite of the offerings at the brewery. My sample was only about an ounce so I didn't get all of the flavor down before I finished but it was heavenly. My sample impressed me enough to buy a case and bring it home with us. I also bought two bottles of the Squall 90 minute IPA which is bottle conditioned and two bottles of the Sah'Tee.

Suz and I got home late on Wednesday night and headed out Thursday afternoon to Brooklyn and their brewery in Williamsburg. It was insanely hot that day and the trek was not fun but we made it there in one piece about twenty minutes before the scheduled start of their "small batch Brewery tour". They call it the small batch because the number of people is limited to about 20 whereas the weekend tours are unlimited and can have as many as a few hundred in the group.
I was delighted by the wonderful use of an old warehouse in the design and build of the brewery and I thought it did wonders to the ambiance. We were shepperded around by Tim and Erin for about 50 minutes and then were given a four beer sample and the glasses we used could be kept by us when we left..... double score. Our samples were of the brown ale, summer ale, number 1 and The Concoction. They used the name concoction because their original name "the Tonic" was not allowed to be used as per the government. The govt. says that 'the Tonic" sounded like it might offer health benefits. Drinking beer is beneficial enough for me, lol.

I was able to score a couple 750ml bottles of my favorite Brooklyn Beer while I was there, the Sorachi Ace. And while it's not quite as good in the bottle as it is on tap, it's still a thing of wonder. YUM! Actually I found out while up in Brooklyn that the Sorachi Ace was being turned into a yearlong offering instead of the six week window it was offered in last year. How scrumptious.

After the tour we headed over to Gold St. where my buddy Alec lives and had dinner there with him. Splendid times had by all. The food was great, the drinks were better and the company was as good as it gets. So all in all it was just a great beer-cation.

Lots of racking

I racked 4 brews into secondaries this morning before work and it was almost more than I bargained for. I moved the pumpkin, blonde, and amber ales into plastic carboys and the decimation IPA into a glass one. I'm going to need a caption on my brew day pics " no auto-siphons were harmed during the making of this wort".

None of the four smelled bad so that's a good sign and the pumpkin ale smelled glorious with it's nutmeg and cinnamon notes. That will be a delicious beer. I was going to attempt to bottle today too, but I realized that my bottling buckets are at Kurt's.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Taking a lil trip

Suzi and I are headed to Rehobath beach today to visit the Dogfish Head brewpub and brewery. Don't be surprised if we don't come back, lol. We're doing dinner at the pub today and touring the brewery tomorrow afternoon. So much incredible beer just sitting there waiting for us to sip it, yum!