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