January 3rd, 2006
Brewed up a Belgian Trippel style beer yesterday morning. It finally started fermenting by this morning, we were worried about it for awhile there. It's bubbling along merrily now, or at least it was when I left this morning and so should still be. I'm really looking forward to drinking this one.
Bought out a local store of the last bottles of Unibrue's "Edition 2004" which we'd dispaired of finding any remaining bottles of about a year ago. They had three bottles left, so we bought them all, drank the one we'd been saving, and still have 3 hanging around for future events. This is probably the best beer I've ever found. We also got an "Edition 2005" to try and see if it compares to the '04. It didn't a year ago, but it was really young then, so maybe by now it'll be better.
Brewed another gallon of ginger ale last week, but it didn't start fermenting for some reason and now has mold on top.
Got ingredients so that we can try that again. This time I'll make a yeast starter I think.
Batch Size 5 gal.
1.25 lbs. - American Vienna
.5 lbs. - Belgian Aromatic
.25 lbs. - Belgian Biscuit
7 lbs. - Dry Extra Light Malt Extract
1 lbs. - Candi Sugar Clear
1.7 oz. - Hallertau Hersbruck, boiled 60 min.
1 oz. - East Kent Goldings, boiled 15 min.
.5 oz. - Dried Orange Peel, boiled 15 min.
.25 oz. - Goldings (Whole, 5.00 %AA) boiled 3 min.
.5 oz. - Dried Orange Peel, boiled 3 min.
Yeast - White Labs WLP530 Abbey Ale
Original Gravity: ~1.077
Estimated Alcohol/vol: ~9%
If you know the right person to ask and the place isn't packed, you can get quite the selection of aging beers from Downtown in Davis. I'd be willing to bet there's more bottles of the 2004 than they had on the shelf.
Your ideas intrigue me, and I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
I haven't seen a bottle of '04 on their shelves in some time, so I'd assumed they were out. I'll have to inquire.
I've put a lot of time and effort into getting recognized by the right people in the store, just so I could have even more access to expensive beers.
|Date:||January 3rd, 2006 09:57 pm (UTC)|| |
Bring homebrew for Alan and you'll make a fast friend.
he the tall skinny guy with the funny beard?
|Date:||January 3rd, 2006 10:00 pm (UTC)|| |
That's the one. ^_^
the tall skinny guy with the funny sideburns is another good acquaintence to make, although Alan is the best point of contact.
|Date:||January 3rd, 2006 10:55 pm (UTC)|| |
That sounds awesome, but not as awesome as possible ginger ale. Oh, and did you guys ever sign up for that beer dinner in March?
yes. the 14th. are you coming? I can add one, or two, to the reservation...
|Date:||January 3rd, 2006 11:15 pm (UTC)|| |
unfortunately I won't be around until late April, so even with my amazing ability to twist time and space, I don't think I'll be able to link those two trips together.
That sounds awesome! I wish we had beer dinners around here, we only seem to have wine dinners. Perhaps I should start my own.
Clearly the solution is for you to add your powers to the Nortex trying to draw Nora back to the east coast, and in return we'll send homebrew with which to start your beer dinners (I owe mizpurplest
There's an awesome book out called The Brewmaster's Table—Disovering the Pleasures of Real Beer with Real Food
by Garrett Oliver, if'n you're looking for any help in the pairings. Our usual mode of pairing is "mm, tasty," which usually works quite well.
Well after a lengthy conversation this evening with Nora, it was decided (I think?) that we may have to pay a visit up there in October. That way I'd get to meet you two, and we could celebrate my birthday, her birthday, and Erin's birthday all at the same time. Plus I've never been to Boston so I see this as a good thing all around.
I'll have to pick up a copy of that book, since home brewing has always fascinated and appealed to me. Oh and your method of pairing is definitely my method of choice. I tend to do the same with wine and somehow manage to get it right in the process.
I like this plan... Maybe I'll declare an extra birthday somewhere in the mix so that I can be part of the festivities. (Or, you know, offer up futon space for 1-3 of you, depending on whether or not Erin's succumbed to my Nortex offer and moved up here yet. We have 2 sleepable full size futons, with sheets even, and I am absurdly proud of this fact.)
Also, dibs on birthday cake making, if any are to be made. (Or birthday cherry pie for Nora, perhaps.)
If you like beer, you'll like Boston, this is a gross oversimplification, but mostly true. The book I mentioned above is less about homebrew than about pairing commercial beers (or at least commercial styles, against which you might compare a homebrew) with foods. We have an extensive homebrew library, too, and the best intro book, in my opinion, is one called Radical Brewing by Randy Mosher. It isn't the most "welcome to homebrewing, let me hold your hand" of the books, but it's full of all the basic science, lots of recipes, some history, tons and tons of excitement, exuberance, and advice. (It also caters to people who cook and think as I do -- associatively, and/or recipe-less, so be warned.)
October is perfect, Nora's been missing east coast fall like crazy, and hopefully Oct 2006 won't be nearly so wet as 2005's, when I couldn't even gather enough leaves to ship her birthday presents.
P.S. If you're going to be around Nora and Ry's LJs to talk to, I'm going to add you to my friendslist, too, so that the silliness can expand by one more journal. =)
Excellent. I've already added you since Nora identified you and Ry as good folks to know :)
I second all of prosicated
's statements. I'm still working out HOW to ship homebrew, but I'll figure it out one of these days.
I'm going to recomend that book to everyone I talk to for the next year or so.
Warning: This pacakage contains dr0nk, do not shake, or imbibe without a designated box opener.
Now you just need to create "w00+ b33r" the drink for l33t g33k5 everywhere
|Date:||January 6th, 2006 06:46 am (UTC)|| |
Sounds tasty! Would you mind sharing your ginger ale recipe? I've been thinking of making some...
wouldn't mind at all!
now bear in mind that we haven't tasted this one yet... but it's based off an earlier recipe, so should be ok.
12-16 oz. light brown sugar
0-4 oz. Molasses
- (makes the final product very dark colored, adds rich flavor. optional.)
~3.5 oz chopped/crushed fresh ginger root
- (tweak up or down depending on your 'spicy' wishes.)
1 Tbsp cream of tartar
- (helps head retention, no flavor component)
zest and/or juice from 1/2 lemon
additional spices if desired:
4 whole cloves
3 allspice berries
3 cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick ~3"
Boil the ginger and spices in a gallon of water for 30 minutes.
Add sugars, Cream of Tartar, and lemon at 15 minutes.
Cool, ferment, bottle, drink.
We've used Burton Ale Yeast (white labs) for both of our batches, but we're still trying to find a yeast that'll leave it slightly sweeter. The Burton's the best we've found in our research so far, and it still leaves it a little dryer than we're aiming for. Liquid yeast gets a little expensive for 1gal batches though, so might move to dry yeast next round.
Try a 1 gallon batch, not much to lose. See if you like it, tweak the recipe, and let me know what you think!
|Date:||January 7th, 2006 09:02 pm (UTC)|| |
Sounds tasty! Do you let it ferment all the way, then prime and bottle? I saw another ginger ale that said they pitch, then when it starts to bubble, they let it go 48 hours, then bottle and let it finish in the bottle (using champagne bottles). What's your preferred method? I'm kinda wondering if I should maybe let it ferment till it just begins to slow, then stop fermentation, rack into a keg and force carbonate. That may help it retain some sweetness, while getting the characteristics that Burton's will give it. Your thoughts? I have NO experience with ginger ales, so that's why I'm asking you. ;)
Well this is only the second one we've done, so I don't have much more experience. Last time we bottled the same way we do beer (primed and capped), and it came out fine. Planning to do the same this time.
There are a bunch of books out there. The one I'd suggest is:http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1580170528/qid=1136669851
It's more soda oriented than 'ale' oriented though, so may not be of interest.
The recipe we came up with is based on one out of "Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers", that infamous book that comes up in every homebrewing thread mentioning unusual beers. ;o)