Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Great 5-Day Double IPA: Day 2

So yesterday I attempted something pretty insane.
I brewed this beer:

8 lb. canadian light malt extract
1 lb. carapils
.5 lb. caramel 40L
2 lb. corn sugar

7 oz. citra hops (added at each 10 minute interval during 60 min. boil)

irish moss @ 15 mins
yeast nutrient @ 15 mins

2x packets US-05 dry yeast

OG: 1.076

OK Dave, that's not insane, you say. Just keep reading.

The goal of this beer is to have it ready to drink by Sunday. That's FIVE DAYS AWAY. (Well, 4 days now). But I think I can do it. And here's why:

1. Corn Sugar - this shit is like crack to yeast. The yeast will chow through this without even giving it a thought and will propel the rest of fermentation to happen much faster than normal.

2. Yeast + Nutrient - Yeast Nutrient will spur fermentation much faster. Also the US-05 is a very fast acting yeast, and typically a starter isn't even needed in the case of its use. I doubled the amount added, so this should help everything along as well.

3. Heat - It's cold in Cincinnati this week. Therefore I'm using the heat in my house. The heat is set at 70* and the carboy is wrapped up and sitting right next to the main vent in the house. The heat coming out of this vent will run about 75-76*, which, I know, is a little hot for fermentation, but it will also speed up the process.

4. Kegging - Force carbonation is the main reason this will be drinkable on Sunday. A quick fermentation is very necessary, but we'll take this one out of the carboy at the last possible second, fill the keg and blast it with CO2 for a bit. That should do it.

Is this a crazy idea? Yes. Is it necessary? Not at all. But I want to have another beer ready for the Lost series finale on Sunday, and my half-keg of Mango Coconut Coffee Porter just blew on Monday night. So I figured, what the hell, right?

Since it's a Double IPA, I'm going to dry hop it as soon as these hops come in from the west coast (had to buy some at the LHBS yesterday, but sadly, ordering hops from across the country is much cheaper, to the tune of $10/lb in that light, and approx $35/lb if bought local...), and then add a monster ton of hops into the keg on Sunday. The dry-hops won't be terribly present at that point, but the keg will be in action for a month or so before it kicks, so the hops will have plenty of time to
1. do their job in the tune of hop-flavor
and 2. hopefully counteract any of the "off" practices I used during this brewing period

I'll have to keep everyone posted, but for a spur of the moment recipe... it sounds like it'll be pretty dang decent.

Until then.

Friday, May 7, 2010

MC Porter Tasting

Kegged a very small test batch last night and so far, all is well. To be honest I am not surprised at how amazing this beer turned out. The coffee and the mango are hands-down the stars in this effort, but the mango pushes through the back end as the brew warms up and adds a very nice addition to the beer. I could drink this all night. I had two glasses last night and am hosting a small tasting party today to get some outside feedback. Hopefully everything holds up on this one. In a few days (Monday, probably), I'm going to bottle some of the beer (about half), and meanwhile (maybe today) - keg the other half. I need enough of this beer to enter it in a few competitions (most notable the Sam Adams Batch 23 Longshot competition - which is coming up soon).

I'll keep everyone posted on this.

Also, God is currently at Day 15 of the freezing stage. I don't imagine this can yield any, even in the slightest, positive results, but shit, who knows? We shall see what we shall see

Monday, April 26, 2010

My Hydra, Your Hydra

In Greek mythology, the Lernaean Hydra was an ancient nameless serpent-like chthonic water beast (as its name evinces) that possessed nine heads — and for each head cut off it grew two more — and poisonous breath so virulent even her tracks were deadly. The Hydra of Lerna was killed by Heracles as one of his Twelve Labours. Its lair was the lake of Lerna in the Argolid, though archaeology has borne out the myth that the sacred site was older even than the Mycenaean city of Argos since Lerna was the site of the myth of the Danaids. Beneath the waters was an entrance to the Underworld, and the Hydra was its guardian.

The Hydra was the offspring of Typhon and Echidna, both of whom were noisome offspring of the earth goddess Gaia.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Titan City Update

20% kegged
20% coffee
60% iced
M.C. Porter:
50% coffee & toasted coconut added; secondary (champagne yeast)
50% mango puree added; secondary (belgian strong ale yeast)

Sodie Bread:
100% dry-hopped with whiskey soaked cascades; seconday

Imperial Chocolate Rasp/Blackberry Porter (NAY, stout!):
brew date 4/27

That's all for now, but as you can tell things have been picking up so there will certainly be much much more in terms of updates in the days to come!

In other news, we'll be leaving the blogosphere for a few days to head to Chicago to party down with Dave.sq1 and attend our third annual Dark Lord Day celebration:


Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Few Days Behind

Running a few days behind on the secondary transferring of the now dubbed, "M.C. Porter" We're actually racking to secondary a beer that my roommate Steve and I brewed some time back. It's been sitting in the primary for way too long so I fear it's been too long to rack it. We're adding some hops that have been soaked in Irish Whiskey for a few months and then hopefully bottling in a few weeks time.

Back to business. The M.C. Porter is going to be ready to rock and roll in a short while. The mango and coconut is ready to go and the coffee beans are in tow. Since the MC Porter was split into two primaries - one fermenting with champagne yeast, the other with belgian strong ale - we're adding the coffee and coconut to the champagne version and the mango to the belgian strong ale half. I'm really stoked about where this one is heading. Should have a full allotment of bottles on schedule around May 15. There will be a secondary for about 10 days and a tertiary (where we will combine the two) for around 5-6 to get everything working together. Very exciting batch.

Further info: for a 5-gallon batch we essentially recreated the Edmund Fitzgerald grain bill, substituted and doubled their hop bill with only Cascade, split into two with the respective yeasts and are adding 18 oz. toasted coconut with 1 lb Kona beans, plus 7 lbs of mango puree for the final additions. GET PUMPED.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

God on Ice

GOI officially made its way to the freezer yesterday. With 20% of the original beer syphoned off and kegged (hence the previous posting mention of diety-consumption), yesterday we made the final call on what to do with the rest of the beer. Another 20% of the beer was racked to a final stage and pounds and pounds of coffee beans were added to the mix to set for a few weeks. The final 60% was taken to our good friend Steve's, where we were given the priviledged use of his deep freezer. So, currently, God is 20% kegged, 20% on coffee and 60% on ice. There will absolutely be blending, although at this point the best course of action will probably be to bottle each batch individually, and blend from the bottle and not IN the bottle. This way we don't end up with a very limited number of different blends that may or may not reach standards.

Best thing about this is that since God is so volatile and absurd, the beers will age extremely well. So whatever happens, happens.

I have been thinking about adding pounds of fresh fruit to the mix, but at this point I think God has gone through enough and we'll just save the fruit for the upcoming Imperial Chocolate Fruit Porter (Nay, Stout!) Series. Thoughts?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

April Update

A few exciting things are happening around the brewery and here's whats what:

First, we put God in a keg. Yup. We kegged God. And to our surprise, after a brief showing at Adam's impromptu birthday party, it actually had a pretty nice turnout. Not the best beer ever brewed, (and even after we spilled some God on the floor) everyone seemed to enjoy the 18% monster at least in a touch. A few days later, Sam ended the night with one. Mistake-city population Mooninite. At this point, there's still some left in the keg and about 3.5 gallons in fermentation. I might as well just dump a bottle of whiskey in it and call it a day. WAIT A SECOND. That's EXACTLY what I should do. God is harsh enough; might as well make him an alcoholic monstrosity. <-- More details on this later.

Also, there have been so many new brews in the last few months that it's a little uncomfortable to even try to recollect. The point of the brews at this point is really to try and nail down a few recipes that we can put out as we go into actual production down the road. To be fairly candid, I'd have to say that our most successful beers have also been our biggest ones: Man, Imperial Chocolate Raspberry Porter (Nay, Stout!), Spiced Chai Milk Stout and Batch 11. There have been many many other good brews, but those have by far been the DaveDave BEST. They will certainly make the initial lineup come full production.

That being said, I am heading into "full-brew-mode" over the next few weeks. I'd like to remake and perfect those recipes as we head forward, and really work the kinks out to put down a great quality product. More info as those come forward (for today, a new carboy and a Chocolate Raspberry Imperial Porter (Nay, Stout!) brewing session. Actually if I can handle it, I'd like to brew two of these (one today, one tomorrow), and make one with blackberries instead of raspberries. These should be ready to bottle by the beginning of June (just in time to bring out on vacation! ;) )

Tonight we are going to rack the Mango Coconut Porter to secondary, adding our Mango as well as our toasted coconut. Looks like I may be making a trip out to Jungle Jim's before the end of the day to pick up the extra pieces to those puzzles. This one will be ready to drink by our May 23rd LOST finale. Exciting. We're also going to add kona coffee beans to the secondary to really shake everything up. So, now, the beer has transformed into a Belgian Style Coffee Mango Coconut Porter with Champagne yeast. High hopes here.

What's next? Well, DaveDave has recently implemented some advancements to our brewing and bottling process, and in doing so has created a higher level of quality beer over a more consistent level. Look out for this in the future. Taste the DaveDave

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Mixup

So we goofed. It was a silly mistake, I promise you. But the result is... well, mind-opening. Mind-blowing. Mind-bending. You have no idea the scale of what has occurred. You're not ready. No one is ready. The results will be posted soon though, I promise you that.

Much Love,