Home Brew Update
- Sunday, 18 September 2016
For those who read about our difficult brew day about a month ago, you may be wondering what happened with that beer!
Well (spoiler alert), it turned out quite drinkable, albeit a little bit cloudy and bitter as we didn’t get the brew cold fast enough due to dilemmas with the wort chiller.
Unfortunately though, bottling didn’t go completely according to plan, but it wasn’t that bad! We managed to get all the beer bottled without too much fuss, but we didn’t take a big enough sample, which made our hydrometer useless and ultimately we couldn’t calculate the strength of the beer.
So now we have three slabs of Pale Ale, but we don’t really know how strong it is. Oh well, these things happen. As mentioned though, the beer is still plenty drinkable. The bitterness comes out a little bit too much and too dry at the end, and this takes away from the aroma that was intended by the final hop additions, but it’s still a tasty beer!
A great thing about home brewing is being able to share your efforts with friends, and a good friend should never say no to a free beer. The friends we’ve been sharing this batch of home brew with seem to be enjoying it, despite the minor faults with the beer. It can be difficult to gauge feedback from friends, as rarely they’ll say anything too critical, but when a mate goes back from a second or a third, that’s enough said!
Further Home Brewing – A Success!
About two weeks ago we brewed our Pilsner recipe and it went as well as it could have!
It was a little windy so we got limited use of the gas burner (as it kept blowing out). However, it was on for long enough to get the wort up to a good temperature before throwing it on the electric stove. The wort chiller worked perfectly this time around so things got cold nice and quickly!
And even better, we took a gravity sample at the end of the brew, and we hit 1.o52! Exactly what we were aiming for. It’s always nice to hit what you’re trying to hit.
This beer has sat in the fermentation fridge at 13 degrees Celsius for the last two weeks and we’ve just started conditioning it further at 3 degrees Celsius. Now it’s a matter of waiting… this beer should be ready to drink by mid-October, just as the Sydney weather is starting to warm up. Perfect for a Pilsner!
What’s Next in Home Brewing?
Next, we’ll probably make our Saison recipe as it will be very good for the summer and ready just in time. This beer is fermented at 25 degrees Celsius. We’ll keep it in our fermentation fridge, but the ambient temperature of the house should keep temperature control at a minimum. We’re brewing for the season!
From there we’ll start developing a new recipe. We’re leaning towards a sour, which we’ve never done before, but it will be nice to be challenged and learn some new techniques! The biggest question is what kind of sour and what we want to do with it. It’s really a new style for us in relation to home brewing, so we’ll probably start with someone else’s recipe before diving in with our usual home brew recipe development.
And that should get us to the next little while! Depending on how that first sour goes and what we’re in the mood for, we may try to iterate over the sours for a few brews, but we run the risk of making too much sour beer and getting tired of it (if that’s possible), so we’ll probably switch it back up to one of our standard recipes.
Yay to home brewing!