Saturday, December 02, 2006

Stairway Pilsner (10 ga.) & PVC Christmas (5 ga.)

Thanks to everyone who came out and helped make today's meeting another success.

Tim did a fine job as brewmaster, ordering the recipes, stealing the CO2, and managing the brewing details. We had a minor incident with the malt warming process on the Christmas kit batch (thus the name), but otherwise it seemed to turn out fine. Should be ready for holiday season next year if we're patient. :-) We hit the numbers on the larger full mash Pilsner batch, and it shows signs of being a nice hoppy brew. Congrats, Tim.

We also keg'd 15 ga. from last brew club (10 - IPA, 5 - Porter). Seems like this system should work out fine. We now have 6 kegs, which should be able to provide some nice brews on tap in the near future.

Pictures and other thoughts from tonight's scribe (Brad) will be posted here soon, but I wanted to put something up, since I've missed so many recently...

- Russ

Monday, September 25, 2006

Hair of the Dog (Oatmeal Stout)

Ok, so I've been slacking posting - sorry. Perhaps we'll appoint a club scribe?

At any rate, we had a great time at the Bachman's (thanks for hosting), and had a very successful cooking of a 10ga. Oatmeal stout recipie Wes was good enough to pick up for us. We seemed to be "in the money" on the numbers, and it was already showing good promise when we pitched the yeast. I for one, am really looking forward to a nice meal-in-a-glass brew again.

Here's a couple specifics from Greg, for records keeping:
Name: Hair of the Dog Stout
Original Gravity: 1.049
Volume: 9.6 gal
IBU (bittering units): 40
Notes: We hit all of our targets. Mash temp was within 1 degree, starch conversion was excellent, mash efficiency was perfect, gravity was slightly under only because we aimed for 9 gallons and got 9.6 (we didn't boil off quite as much as planned, so it is minutely diluted). Our brew time was down to 4 hours and we were done early!
We also sampled the light ale from Guhr's (bottled at Regier's), and it seems to be progressing nicely. For a very light brew, it's good to see very little (if any) off flavouring appearing. We'll have a few cases at the next club meeting.

This past week we also bottled the brown ale from the previous brewing at Regier's - seems to be coming along nicely (or "looking well", as some said). Should be available in a couple months. Following several hours of bottling (also packaged up 10ga. of Greg's personal batch), it was agreed by Greg, Tim and I (and others at the Bachman's later) that the next purchase for the club should be a cornelius keg system (pop machine type), to aleviate the bottling labour involved. They can be had relatively cheaply, due to the availability of hardware, etc, and are easy to handle/move. The current plan is to try to get a starter package in time for bottling/kegging this stout or perhaps the next batch (IPA - not sure where - volunteers?), allowing us to keg some of it, and bottle the rest. This will allow for easy access at club meetings, and for folks to take some home in bottles. Let us know what you think of the idea.

And of course, when time comes to drink the Hair of the Dog, post your comments here if you like. We're working on the "select" list for attempting repeats of the most popular brews. To date it includes the Brewbonic Plague, Scotch Ale, the IPA, and Fire in the Hole (small batches?).

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Plague a no-show for Neufeld's, round #3

The third club brewing at the Neufeld residence was without illness (like brewing #1), leading me to declare that the plague's relative success following brewing #2 was an "anomaly", and that "2 out of 3 brewings were healthy, and that ain't bad." :-P

Everyone seemed to enjoy the fellowship over a meal and cooking up another 2 batches in one night. Thanks to everyone who brought such good sides, and for the help with equipment runs to Greg's/Brad's/Chuck's to keep the brewing moving along.

The batches this time were both Belgians. The lighter one ("Junebug Belgian") was from a MoreBeer All-Grain kit. The darker one ("Massenbelgier") was self-assembled from our first bulk ingredients purchase (a 50lb bag of 2-row malt). Greg started the yeast again, so we could split it between batches. Greg - you can post the actual recipes in a comment to this post.

All told, it was another successful gathering. For those who stayed later, the fire pit and cheese melts were a nice treat (thanks Sara).

For some reason, these guys seem to get dirty a lot.
Next one's tentatively at the Guhr's. Hope to see you all there.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

March Meeting @ Regier's

A busy, bustling night with lower turnout (some confusion about notification - sorry for those who missed it), we brewed 2 batches for the club, plus Abe & Joel whipped up a batch as well. Partly as a proof of concept (that we could brew 2 batches in a night in the same equipment), and partly in an attempt to up the production a bit, it went well, with about 6 hrs of brewing total. A lively theological discussion kept participants awake through the hours of waiting...

Thursday, January 26, 2006

First Meeting of 2006

The return to brewing after a brief Dec. hiatus was a large success, with a healthy turnout. It was good to see plenty of families and new faces, and to spend some time with the "old" ones. The home-brew we had on hand didn't survive the night, and generally was getting good reviews. The Pilsner is coming along nicely and the dopple-bock called "The Plague" has completely matured (now at the 11 mo. mark) - it is unknown if there is any more of that batch left. The March dopple-bock has not faired as well, and still holds an acidic, sharp edge and slight flavour coloration. Perhaps a little more time will further soften those edges, but I doubt it.

This time we brewed a last minute selection due to our planned batches being stuck in a UPS truck in Wichita. Greg did us all a favour pulling an American Cream Ale recipe together at the last minute and running point on the brewing. Thanks! I'll let Greg post a comment with the recipe and brewing specifics. We did run the mash to nearly 2 hours to try to get more complete starch conversion. This may have been due to the nearly 15% corn in the grain recipe.

If anyone has pictures from that night, feel free to pass one or two along for posting. Thanks.