The other fall thing to do

Started a hard cider today. Got some cider from a local orchard. They use potassium to kill the baddies, but not too much that it would lay waste to the yeast. We shall see. Starting gravity at 1.044, going to split into 4 or 5 containers after primary. Some ideas are floating around as to how to treat them.
Apple pie cider
Caramel Apple
Candied Apple
Cinnamon Apple Cider
Polaris dry hopped
Hull melon dry hopped

I might just need more starting cider…

Triple brew

Triple brew today. Ipa, oktoberfest and porter. Ipa came in at 1.052. Oktoberfest came in at 1.055. Porter came in at 1.0xx. Stay tuned for how they turn out. 

IBU Calculations

Posting a link to my IBU calculator.  Beersmith and hand calcs – they don’t jive.

IBU Calculator


Edit: A thought… I also have not accounted for bitterness derived from malts. Either way – IBUs per hop are still off.

Bottling day: Mango habanero

Bottled this one today.   Lost a lot of beer to sediment, but rather that than have lots of junk beer.  The taste on this is interesting.   We will see how things pan outwith some carbonation.  Final gravity was .988 so a total alcohol content of around 11%

Dark Lord Day

Dark lord day was yesterday.  It was a series of long lines, to wait in the lines to wait in the lines to get beer.  When DL would go on tap at a beer stand (which it did in rotation around the grounds) the line would quickly form and snake the entire festival.  The only organized lines came from the bathrooms and DL sales themselves.  One of those had barricades, the other was just smelly.  Wife and I won with our golden tickets so we got 2 of the 3 variants.  I would like to try the Brandy DL some day, but probably won’t get the opportunity.  We got the Vanilla Bean variant and the Caocao nib/Orange Peel/Cardamom/ variant.  One is of 800 or so bottles, the other 350 or so.  So quite a rare pull.


Brew Day: Mango Pepper Pale Ale

Mango Pepper Pale Ale got brewed today.  This is a lesson learned again.  Things didn’t end in the red though.  My efficiency was higher than I had planned for,  but my volumes were way low.  I decocted 2 gallons of it for a mash out in an effort to reduce the chances of needing a long boil…  I only sparged with 2 gallons as well.  I ended up making certain that the mash tun was 100% drained and into the boil.  I initially only got 2.5 gallons of wort, managed to squeeze out another gallon or so.  Through all this, efficiency was high.  I ended with 1.073 over the 1.069 that I intended.  This landed me somewhere near 60% efficiency.  I’m wagering that if I had sparged properly and used more volume for a mash out I would have gotten much more.

Transfer to Secondary: Blood of the Irish

Transferred this to secondary.  It seems like a lot of stuff has really dropped out of it in primary leaving a very clear beer. It smells like a red with just a hint of the smoke like I intended. Currently sitting pretty at about 1.009, or 6.17% ABV.

Brew Day: Chocolate Braggot

I brewed my first braggot today with Kevin.  We were going to do 2 batches, but his propane tank was buried in ice and snow.

Intended gravity was 1.080 post boil, then honey with the yeast.

I ended up with about 1.077, but had an extra .25 to .5 gallon.  This left me at just below a 60% efficiency.  Running the grains through twice really did make a big difference.  I think if I had the time and patience I could have done a longer boil and sparged to get a much higher efficiency.  But at that point it would be closer to a 2-3 hour boil with all the excess liquid.  Might be time for a bigger boil pot… or at least next time I’ll do it at home and I can do a small and large boil in 2 different pots.