Just another Friday

I think I’ve brewed more over the past 3 months than I have in the last two years.  The goal of such prolific activity is to have a variety of beers to be ready for a workplace tasting, tastings for the assorted holiday parties in December and assembling Christmas gift six packs for the special people in my life who appreciate craft beer.  But what I find myself in is a bottling quandary.  Too much beer, too few bottles.  As of yet, I don’t have a fermentation backlog due to lack of bottles, but it’s coming in about two weeks.  I always prefer to buy twelve packs, drink the beer and save the bottles.  But there is no way I’m going to be able to drink myself into a solution.  So I will most likely have to bite the bullet and buy empty bottles.  Anyway, here was last Friday’s activity.

Rollin’ Barrel Bottling

Secondary fermentation of 7 days on bourbon and oak chips was completed for the bourbon porter.  The taste test indicated a bit of heat from the bourbon, more than I remember compared to the last time I brewed this.  But maybe it stood out more because it was warm and uncarbonated.  Hopefully some carbonation, aging and refrigeration will mellow it out nicely.  Estimated ABV is 6.8%.  Yield was 42 12oz glass bottles and 10 16oz PET bottles.

Amy’s Straight “A”le  Brew Day

This is a straight forward cream ale for Rick’s wife Amy who is an elementary school teacher.  She admits that her go-to beer is Miller Lite so I wanted to give her a craft beer that will be smooth, light and sessionable.  They are having a Halloween/Octoberfest party on Oct 18, so this should be ready by then.

2.5 Gallon BIAB

4.6 lbs Rahr 2-Row Pale Malt

0.1 lbs Gambrinus Honey Malt

0.1 lbs Castle Biscuit Malt

Strike Water:  2.7 gal @ 156 F

Mash:  75 min @ 150 F

Sparge:  1.3 gal @ 170 F

Boil:  60 min

Hops:  0.25 oz Cluster @ 45 min   and 0.25 oz Cluster at 5 min

Yeast:  Safale US-05

OG:  Target –  1.043,   Actual – 1.042

Target ABV:  4.0%

Target IBU:  16.46

Target SRM:  4.64

Due to the amount of frequent brewing I’ve been doing, I’m expectedly getting my brewing process down pat.  Brew days have been smoother.  Practice makes perfect.  Next week I’m brewing my last batch for a little while, an IPA.  Then I’m taking the rest of October off.  Also next week, I need to assess the status of my imperial stout and Witty Kitty officially comes out of bottle conditioning.  We did refrigerate two bottles of the witbier to get a sneak peek on it and shared it with a couple family members.  Great comments all around and Erika and I were super stoked with how it came out.  More to come on that later.

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