Week 1 taste test

20 09 2010

My lager was bottled over a week ago now. It has spent this week liberally swaddled in coats and sweat shirts to ensure that it has stayed within it’s optimum temperature bracket of 21-24 degrees and it seems that I have succeeded ๐Ÿ™‚

On getting home yesterday afternoon I decided to give it a quick taste test to see how things are faring one week on…. well the results are positive indeed.

The beer is reasonably fizzy (but not there yet) is keeping a decent head, has a reasonable amount of lacing on the glass and actually tastes good.

Not just like a half decent store bought lager but actually properly good!

Somehow by some miracle I was drinking lager that had a taste other then just being a really cold fizzy liquid ๐Ÿ˜€

Now to leave it be for another week at room temperature before sticking half of it into the fridge and the rest under the floorboards.

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Another beer :)

17 09 2010

Having bottled my first ever homebrew last Sunday my fermenter was sitting looking empty and sad ๐Ÿ˜ฅ

Luckily though this was just a temporary period of inactivity as my next batch of beer was only a day away.

The week before I had been sitting there contemplating the lager bubbling away in my fermenter and had thought to myself that if I was going to keep on track with my plan for all of my festive drinks to be of a homebrewed variety that I really needed to get cracking and minimise the downtime between brews.

So I ordered up a couple more kits and also another 40 odd bottles as there is no way all of the lager will be drunk by the time I need to bottle my next batch.

The choice of kits available is really quite large and I will readily admit that I did spend somewhere in the region of 4 hours trying to work out what I wanted to go with; in the end I settled on a Coopers Brewmaster IPA which I would be making using predominately spray malt instead of sugar and Woodfordes Norfolk Nog which is all malt and as such wont need any extra fermentables to be added at all.

I am taking a little bit of a risk with the Nog and I will tell you why; having lived fairly close to the Woodforde’s brewery when I was back home in the UK I have had the opportunity to try 95% of the beers that they have produced including of course Norfolk Nog.

Now on the one hand this is a good thing as I know how it should taste, on the other hand it is a bit of a problem as I know how it should taste… Whilst I’m sure that it will turn out to be very close to the original and be very drinkable I do worry that it is going to have a taste to it that doesn’t fit with how I know it should taste. Well nothing ventured nothing gained as they say!

The Coopers IPA is now in the fermenter and is bubbling away nicely at about 24 degrees in the end I added 500g of light spray malt and 300g of dextrose. I had been going to go with all spray malt but a few forums were listed as saying that this combination works out to be a more traditional tasting IPA.

It should hopefully be ready to bottle by Monday so I am keeping my fingers crossed that it turns out as well as people are suggesting it should.





Bottling day cometh

13 09 2010

Yesterday was quite a fun day for me; I got up in the morning and made bread nom nom nom and then after eating the bread went home and set about bottling my beer.

For anyone who didn’t read my homebrew post earlier this week (if not why not?) I brewed my own beer for the first time last Monday evening.

I have been watching over my beer like an anxious mother hen, checking it’s temperature, making sure it is snuggled up at night and of course taking hydrometer readings.

For those who aren’t in the know a hydrometer allows you to measure the specific gravity of a liquid, in this case my beer.

It started out at roughly 1050 on Monday evening and as of Yesterday had been sitting at 1008 since Friday when I got in from work.

Not only is it good that the SG has been static for 2 days as it means that the fermentation has more or less complete it also means that my little beer is going to be near as damn it 6% ๐Ÿ™‚

I had a little taste of the beer and my conclusions are that it looks, smells and tastes like beer! Not a bad start.

So I rinsed out all of the bottles that were provided (44 50cl plastic bottles with caps) primed them with the carbonation drops and filled those suckers up!

Now I just need to wait, two long weeks at the least ๐Ÿ˜ฆ





real drinkers only need apply

10 09 2010

Are you feed up with beers that are a measly 5,7,9 hell even 11% well fret not!

If you have always had dreams of a delicious beer coupled with the ABV of neat spirits then Brewdog have just the thing for you…

SINK THE BISMARCK

Billed as being an IPA for the dedicated sink the bismarck is picking up where tactical nuclear penguin left off, it is the strongest beer in the world!

This behemoth of an IPA is clocking in at a mighty 41% ABV!!!

That is roughly 10x the strength of most regular IPA that you will come across! I was blown away by TNP when I tried it and that only came in at a miserly 32%. I fully envisage sink the bismarck to put into an alcohol induced coma of happiness!
Needless to say I have had to order some of this bad boy for me to sample, probably under medical supervision and well away from heavy machinery.

Here are the boys from Brewdog to amuse and educate you about their monsterous creation.

Sink the Bismarck! from BrewDog on Vimeo.





Homebrew day 4 and counting

9 09 2010

I am now on the 4th day since I put my homebrew into the fermenter, at first I was a little concerned that it was taking a while to get going but after a day or so we are motoring along nicely.

There is tons of condensation on the lid and a nice thick layer of krausen (foam that forms during the fermentation process) has formed on top.

I checked the gravity of the beer when Iย  first put it into the fermenter and it was showing up at approx 1050, as of this morning we are sitting at just below 1020 and I must say that what I tasted from the trial jar certainly tastes like beer!

Not only did it taste like beer but it smells like beer and when poured into the jar froths up like beer.

I am hopeful that there will only be 1/2 days until I can go ahead and bottle this bad boy.

Just in time for my next batch to be started!





hooray for homebrew

7 09 2010

My birthday is fast approaching… now there is no need to get up and rush to the store just yet, there are still 19 days and plenty of time for you to make a considered purchase not just some spontaneous POS that I wont like.

Anyhow as an early birthday present (there was nowhere to hide it) my GF decided to buy me something I had always toyed with buying myself…. a homebrew kit.
Not just any old homebrew kit but a Coopers MicroBrew kit; these kits from Coopers are renowned for being some of if not the most complete kits on the market and are great for both beginners like me and seasoned pros alike!

On opening the kit I was really really pleased to see that the fermenter is a properly made item and not some food-grade plastic bucket with a lid, those things are awful to clean and apparently breed germs like no ones business.

Also included in the kit wereย  40 reusable pet bottles which is a godsend to me as I have helped cap bottles before and it blows…a lot.

Now to the good part, the kit comes with all the ingredients to brew your own Coopers lager, now as the world knows I’mย  not the biggest lager fan but I never turn down a beer!

I watched the DVD, read the instructions and I am now proudly watching over my very 23 litres of fermenting goodness; apparently this should be ready to bottle by Friday so I will keep you posted!








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