It’s been a long spring full of travel and new beers in distant places, but it seems like just a couple weeks ago I was in an auditorium at the CBC listening to Brewers Association director Paul Gatza address thousands of craft brewers: Continue reading
Brewing an Irish stout: it’s been a while. So long, in fact, that any delay from a little detour into history and personal remembrance won’t significantly prolong the wait. Let’s get a beverage before the second paragraph. Continue reading
Happy new year, citizens. My last beer of 2013 and my first beer of 2014 were both homebrews. Standard gravity, mishmashed ingredients and of no particular style, brewed just for the sake and love of brewing. I have a German Pils conditioning in a keg and the grist for a Czech dark lager measured out and waiting for the hopper.
I did OK with my resolutions – how about you? What was your last/first beer of the years? When’s your first brew sesh?
It will probably be the last brew day of October, and it may well be the last brew day under the open sky before the looming winter of 2013/14 ushers operations into the garage and kitchen. It will be a day to play hooky and eat lustily of the tacos of bachelorhood, even if only for an afternoon, and over the sink so I don’t have to wash dishes later.
It will be a west coast IPA with West Coast IPA, riffing on the recipe for Russian River Blind Pig in Mitch Steele’s IPA. It will have some well-loved old friends – Rahr 2-row, Amarillo, Simcoe – and some new blood too: Polaris for the bittering power, EXP 5256 standing in for CTZ and Cascade where called for in the Blind Pig bill. Continue reading
After grinding over easily-avoidable rocks and missing hooksets due to the effects of 7% American IPAs, fly fishermen in central Minnesota invented the ordinary bitter as a more temperate all-day beer with which to fill their drift boat coolers . Continue reading
Partly by reader request but mostly because it’s time: Berliner Weisse.
Tiny grain bill, no boil … this is easier than extract brewing! I should brew Berliner Weisse all the time. Continue reading
Decoction is a meandering path to take to arrive at a beer; you can get a fermentable wort (not the same wort, though) into the boiler with less time and effort, but I think it’s safe to say that for most homebrewers, this whole thing we do is about the journey at least as much as it is the destination. Continue reading
A few days ago, blog reader Joe J. asked:
I am gearing up to get a nice dry stout going for Patty’s Day. Do you have a tried and true recipe that you stick by?
I’m going to invite y’all to help me answer in the comments section. I’ll go first:
What I brew, when I brew a dry Irish stout, isn’t mine by any means – it’s pretty much the standard modern Dublin DIS formulation: 65% pale malt, 25% flaked barley, 10% roast barley. I like a bitter dry stout, so I aim to get low-mid 30s for IBUs with one bittering charge. Then 1084 Irish Ale yeast and Erin go bragh … nitro serve is nice if you can do it, but the texture is nice regardless with the flaked barley.
So … what say you, citizens?
Happy new year, citizens.
I am not big on resolutions – when I make a to-do list, I like to include items that I’ve already completed so I can start crossing things off right away and bask in the glow of my own incredible efficiency – but I do believe in the importance of intentionality and not waiting for things to happen all by themselves. So, with that in mind, here are my brewing resolutions for the 363 days to come:
- Read in a timely fashion these good books that Santa brought me.
- Renew the bonds of friendship with some yeast strains and beer styles that I haven’t visited in years … Dortmunder, Witbier, straight lambic, Wyeast 2565 …
I’d love to hear what you guys have planned for your fermentors and kegs this year.