Saturday, July 23, 2011

Pre-Vacation Update...

Oh hey... I'm here... Since my last brewday (Fresh Citrus Witbier) I haven't had a whole lot of beer stuff going on. I have a bunch of little things to update, so I'll sum it all up tonight.

Keggle... is at a standstill. I'm ready to go, I want my next batch to be my first ten gallon. I'm getting really tired of living brewday to brewday to keep my taps flowing. One keg per brewday is mega-lame... Also, when I get a really great beer (Saison) it goes way too fast and I feel like I got kicked in the junk when the tap sputters and blows CO2... Anyway... waiting on the welder, my schedule and his are tough to sync with my buddy as the middleman, but I'm sure it will happen.

Saison... Is already gone... Filling growlers has a way of kicking a keg fast. I will def be brewing this one again this summer to take advantage of the heat.. Maybe my next brew after I get back from vacation... Ohh, maybs my first ten gallon!

60min Centennial IPA... I ended up using a swamp cooler to keep fermentation temps in check. Yeast esters is not the focus of this style like belgians and the Saison. Trying to keep things clean to focus on the hops. Have I talked about swamp coolers?? I don't remember... basically put fermentor in a rubbermaid tote half full of water, take old garbage T-shirt, get the shirt wet and drape over the fermentor. The T-shirt acts like a wick and the water evaporates pulling heat out of the water, cooling the fermentor. This works best when the air is dry, in humidity you can rotate bottles of water in and out of the freezer to keep things cool...
Aaaanyway... I dryhopped for 2 weeks, and kegged today. It smelled totally amazing going into the keg.

Fresh Citrus Witbier... Total blowoff tube action on this one... I checked on the fermentor the morning after brew day and saw this...

So... total vigorous fermentation... blowoff tube... let sit in primary for 2 weeks... didn't stress too much about fermentation temps, I kinda like the funky belgian flavors... so... tested today, 1.010, with an original gravity of 1.050 that makes 5% abv which is dead nuts for the style. I kegged, color was good, smelled belgiany, tasted a little thin but I'm hoping carbonation will add some good mouthfeel.

I have these two kegged and carbonating in the kegerator now. I'm taking these two kegs to Maine next week for Casco Days (sidenote: see the blurry carousel picture at the bottom of the website? we think that's me and my daughter three years ago...) Normally, kegs sit still in the kegerator and as they chill, all the sediment settles to the bottom and after you pour the first pint or two, you have clear beer. If you disturb the keg, you have to wait for it to settle all over again. This creates a problem driving four hours with two kegs in the trunk (probably lying on their sides) so I have to keg jump... basically I let the beer settle in the keg and then transfer to another clean keg leaving the sediment behind. I've never done this before, and I have to build a keg jumping line (maybs I'll do a quick write up) Also Casco Days looks to be a mini beer festival... I'm bringing ten gallons of homebrew to share, and the other beer geek in the family is bringing up a bunch of cellared beers to open... lots of beer, lake, boat, wakeboarding, fireworks, Casco Days wiffle ball classic, ice cream every night... should be a great week+

Also, this past Wednesday was my birthday... ugh... but check out the sweet shirt my wife had made for me... I was totally excited...

Also, total birthday beer... A nice Belgian Witbier with lemongrass... very summery... I think I am now on a total quest to try all the DFH beers... just don't call me a fanboy... thanks.

And I'm total slumming it tonight... drinking SNPA from the bottle. 

Itching to brew, but life is busy... vacation coming up, also going to Alabama for a few days to visit my Grampa (first time on a plane... at 31... lame. Also total nervous, shh...) and meanwhile I have this super huge project at work that just got kicked into high gear with a ridiculous deadline, I just hope they don't figure out that I don't know what I'm doing (I tell them all the time, but they don't believe me) There's other stuff... but... I don't want to talk about it... That's it for tonight... sorry for no lolz... Later

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