Thursday, April 23, 2020

I have a lot of homebrew right now. I've been brewing more since the start of stay-at-home orders. Beers that I have on hand include from (oldest to newest) are Near Wild Heaven (American Wild Ale made with dregs of Jolly Pumpkin Bam Biere), Wee Heavy (Northern Brewer recipe from 2012), a few different Saison from the last five years or so, the Ardennes Porter, Robust Porter, Bière de Garde and now Kölsch.

The rocky head on the B-d-G trying to get away.
Tonight I've cracked open a bottle of Bière de Garde. The recipe included Briess Pilsner DME, Aromatic and Vienna malts along with Aramis and Styrian Goldings hops. I used the K-97 yeast which is the same that I used for the Kölsch that I just bottled. The Bière de Garde was really phenolic at first as it fermented well above it's range. The Brewjacket Immersion that I was using at the time seemed to have short-circuited and the fermentation temperature went up into the 80s. That was back in October.  The beer has since mellowed and is quite as phenolic, quite dry and pours with a rocky, persistent head (left.)

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I think my next beer will be a Saison, I just have to figure out if I want to a bigger batch and be more of a Grisette. I would need to acquire some good dregs to add the requisite tartness if I make a Grisette. I would otherwise make four gallons of a standard "export" type of Saison in the vein of Saison DuPont.

Monday, April 20, 2020

The Grodizskie was a disaster. It fermented fine, but by bottle crapper broke after capping just one bottle. I ended up filling a two-liter swing top growler that I remembered I had. Need to chill it down at some point and see if it carbonated. Kind of waiting for party since it's two liters of beer....but parties are kind of banned now due to the ongoing pandemic. Yes, there's a pandemic now. A coronavirus called COVID-19 has shutdown restaurants, bars and most retail except groceries. So I expect homebrewing to become more popular. It seems like homebrew shops are still selling supplies online. I bought some supplies a few weeks ago early on in the stay at home order part of the pandemic response in my area. I have enough ingredients to brew another batch of beer...yes, another batch. My first "pandemic" batch got bottled today.

Pandemic Pale Ale (because why not) is a really pale ale, a blond ale in fact. I fermented it with Safale K-97 yeast. It was a simple batch of Briess and Munton's light DME along with Styrian Goldings and Sterline hops. I added and ounce of the Sterling at one minute left in the 60-minute boil while the Styrians boiled for 60 minutes (they were only 2.8% AA) for bittering. I fermented at 62 degrees to start and then raised the temerature slightly after five days to 64. I bottled tonight, on the tenth day of fermention, with the gravity at 1.008. The starting gravity was 1.047. I packaged about 14 liters of beer. Most of it was put into 500ml bottles I recently purchased and a few my cobalt blue swingtops that I have left.

I have a lot of homebrew right now. I have a case or more of the Ardennes Porter and a case of the Blond Biere de Garde I brewed awhile back. Both of these beers are overcarbonated. I looked back through my notes and searched my memory and I think I simply added too much priming sugar. For both of these batches I measured 2/3 of a cup of priming sugar for some reason which I believe to be too much. It could also be that both of these weren't quite finished or perhaps a non-spoiling bacteria. I also have a case of Robust Porter that turned out very nice and is NOT overcarbonated.

My next batch will likely be a farmhouse ale as I have some Safale BE-134 in the fridge and plenty more Sterling hop as well as some Huel Melon.