Friday, March 23, 2012

Brewing on a budget

Now that funds are tight for affording this great hobby I'm glad that I've stocked up on supplies.
It's always a good idea to buy the 50 lb. bag of your basic base malts such as American 2-row and now I'm glad I did.
Also stocking up on the old standby hops like Cascade or Northern Brewer or E.K. Goldings when you find them at a good price is smart.  They keep a long time in your freezer if kept in the oxygen barrier bags they come in.
I'm so glad that I canned starter wort too since now I have starters available for my next 6 brews.  It's also practical and economical to save the yeast from the fermenter from your last brew to use in future brews.  Stored correctly they can be kept viable for a couple of months.
So, now if I can come up with a good recipe for the yeast, hops and grain I have on hand, I can brew the next batch or two without ANY outlay of cash!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

MacTarnahan's Spring Sling Shot

I just tried MacTarnahan's spring release today.  This is an excellent beer that I would gladly brew!
It's quite malt-forward with a slightly sweet finish.  Lightly hopped, just enough to balance the considerable malt presence.  With the light caramel note as well as the very pale color, I'd guess at 1 pound of Crystal 15L and to get to 6.2% ABV it probably uses 12 lbs. of American 2-row Pale Ale Malt.  A very pleasant beer indeed.
Get it while you can!

This is what they say are its ingredients:
Sling Shot Pale Ale
Malts: 2 Row Pale, and Caramel
Hops: Nugget and Cascade
Bitternes: 27 IBU
Alcohol By Volume: 6.2%

Friday, March 2, 2012

Tubing Tip

It's a small thing but I found something else useful for my aeration aquarium pump.  I found that pumping air through the tubing I cleaned helped to dry them out so I didn't get water spots.  Notice in the first picture that the tube attached to the pump was clean and nearly dry in 15 minutes and the other was still wet and attracting bacteria after 12 hours.

Best Stout Yet

Today I bottled the clone of Rogue's Shakespeare Oatmeal Stout that Donny and I made.  This one tastes so good that I wanted to drink it right from the bottling bucket!
I used all stubby bottles this time with black caps.  Either this was a really good recipe and/or the improvements I implemented on this brew really paid off.
This batch yielded 53 bottles at a cost of only 65 cents per bottle! (Including the labels yet to be created.)

Homebrewer's reflection:  If the beer is really good, you want to share it and have little left for yourself.  If the beer didn't turn out well, you've got the whole batch to yourself!