Monday, July 21, 2008

Hops Update

I started back in march, just trying to grow some hops, mostly to see if I could...

Well I did. First year and there are hops on the vine. Not a lot, mind you, but enough that I will actually have to harvest some and dry them. Cascade is currently the only producer, but there are some beginnings of magnum. Sterling is having a tough go, which makes sense as they were the smallest rhizomes. A couple pics. The Cascade is the vine(s) on the left...

Friday, July 11, 2008

Not enough BRA's these days

BRA's (Beer Related Activities) are at an all time low these days. Tennis tournaments, vacations, more tennis, and holidays. Sheesh!

But, I did get the RIS brewed, just miscalculated my grain bill by about 8 pounds, ended up using my boil kettle as a second mash tun, collecting wort from it, then using that wort to sparge the main tun...yes, that's right, I used wort to collect wort, "reiterated sparging" if you will. Gravity was low thanks to that, so I added some DME and ended up with an OG around 1.092. At last check it was about done fermenting, and 1.024, about 9% ABV.

I also brewed a "Honey Porter" using the 2nd runnings and adding a couple pounds of honey. OG was low, 1.038, finished at 1.004 so light bodied and clean. Nice bonus from a LONG rough brew day. Below you will see the "reiterated sparge" and the leftover mountain of grain!