Fall is officially here, even though breweries have been putting out Pumpkin beers for nearly a month now. With the dropping temps, cool nights, gentle breeze, dark evenings, and changing artists palates in the trees comes an innate hankering for something darker and rounder than the crisp and light beers for Summer. The Good Lord gave us Porters and Stouts for a reason, and He also gave us an internal timer that almost instantaneously switches to them from Saisons as the season changes. Like a junkie looking his next fix we yearn for that dark and roasty beverage to sooth our troubled souls. This is part of the reason I just rebrewed my Coffee Porter recipe (the other is because I need to have my flagship beers to give to potential investors). I swapped out the Crystal hops for Chinook on this round to avoid the herbal tea notes that Crystal can throw, and to get a little resin and pine in the mix. The last iteration had issues with the coffee additions as the coffee from the original recipe was no longer available. For this one I actually went with a blend of 2 different coffees from a local artisan and the complexity really makes the beer pop. This recipe was done on my first double brewday in nearly a year. Gotta say it was actually fairly smooth except trying to get all the beer into the fermentors in the fermentation fridge. This was also my first time doing an entire 11+ gallons together in one vessel, which works really well and ensures that I don't have any differences from 2 different pitches into 2 different Better Bottles. After primary fermentation was done this batch was split into 2 different beers. The fresh keg got the Coffee blend, and the 5 gallon carboy received 2 Hungarian oak cubes soaked for 2 months in Woodford Reserve Bourbon. It also received a pitch of Brett, and will get cacao nibs in a couple months. The first version of this beer is drinking quite nicely right now.
Tuesday, September 29, 2015
Thursday, September 24, 2015
If you happen to have questions about timings, amounts, yeasts, etc., feel free to shoot me an email and we might be able to discuss a little more details out of view of the entire web.
Let the Yeast Speak!
Wednesday, September 23, 2015
As I continue to move forward with test batches for the brewery it is becoming more and more evident how difficult it can be to fully dial in a homebrew system. Humidity, temperature, wind, all play a role in the temperature of the grains, the mash, the runnings, and impact boil off rates. My efficiency is fairly dialed in, but sometimes it drops a few percent which impacts the beer. The last time I brewed this recipe I got 7.5% ABV instead of the intended 7.0% For this batch my numbers were much closer to where I wanted them. 11.5 gallons of wort, 2 full corny kegs, 80 IBUs, and 7.2 ABV (even though I was still shooting for 7.0%). For this iteration of the flagship IPA, Release the Panic, I upped each of the hops, especially the Columbus to get a little more resin in there to play with the tropical notes. I also upped the IBUs a little more to try to get some bitterness past the yeast as it down plays the IBUs a lot. I am also keeping this keg at a little higher temp than the previous as it helps to make the aromas pop to serve it a little warmer, and it helps keep the haze in the beer a bit instead of dropping it crystal clear taking precious hop oils to the bottom with the yeast and protein particles.