Monday, 3 December 2018
Friday, 23 November 2018
Bottled the East Street stout today. It really tastes promising. That's made the fermentation fridge available for the Barkley Perkins 'kolsch' to finish it's diactyl rest. The bottles of stout are in water baths carbing up. This leaves me a spare inkbird and immersion heater, so I can do the California Common version of the Barkley Perkins lager.
I received my order from the Home Brew Company, and so have enough supplies for my next few brews. I'm thinking these will be;
California Common version of BP lager
Something Belgian with the CML Belgian yeast
Something Victorian from Ron Pattinson
A Vienna lager with Kolsch yeast.
Saturday, 17 November 2018
The Barklay Perkins Lager using Kolsch yeast has dropped to 1012 already. Oh dear, I didn't manage to catch that for a diacetyl rest at 50% or so attenuation. As I suspect it has a couple of points to drop still, I've started raising the temperature. 14.5 tonight, 16.5 tomorrow and then to 18 on Monday. My logic behind the slow increase in temperature is that the Inkbird is measuring the water bath, not the wort, so I want to give the thermal mass of the FV a chance to slowly catch up to the raised temperature of the water in the bath before ramping it up again. And the sample? Wow. Double wow. I had forgotten how lovely Saaz hops are. This is a lovely drop, and already tastes clean and lager like. Once carbonated up and then left to pseudo 'lager' in the bottle for several weeks I think I may be onto a winner. Very impressed with the CML Kolsch yeast at this point and am already thinking about other historic lagers I could
Next up for testing was the best extra stout. This appears to have dropped to 1014 already, but, again, needs to be left for finish off. Tastes incredibly chocolaty and rich. Very nice, in fact. Both these have cheered me up a bit, after coming to the realisation that my brown ale is pants. More on that later. Again, no freeing up the brew fridge.
So I popped a bottle of ESB in the fridge, cracked it open to see of they had fully carbonated. They have, which is excellent as it frees up an Inkbird and a couple of immersion heaters. That is all I need to ferment the CML California Common version of the Barklay's historic lager.Now, it hasn't totally cleared, but it tastes really good, just what I was aiming for. It also has a cracking head, which I think has me converted to flaked barley.
So, I'd better cover the 1954 Whitbread Double Brown. On bottling, I quite liked the fruity flavour the yeast gave it. But, I'm afraid, it just doesn't work. In fact, the whole recipe is just thin, and uninspiring. Its not undrinkable, but it's not enjoyable. It just doesn't really work at all. Still, its the first all grain brew I've done that I haven't liked, so I'll chalk that up to experience.
Sunday, 11 November 2018
My Kolsch is bubbling away happily as well, and my water
Friday, 9 November 2018
Being off work this week, I got up nice and early, at which point out youngest announced that it wasn't 'bring a toy to school day' but 'bring one of your parents old toys' to school, preferably along with the parent to talk about it. So I needed to be in school for 1.30pm. I also had agreed to pop in to Grimsby (about an hour or so) to get some grub for tea. The latter I was planning to do during the 90 min mash, and I also needed some yeast, as my fridge only had Crossmyloof Belgian and Californian yeasts in it. I really must get into yeast recovery and banking.
As it happened, I was in town slightly longer than expected, and the 90 min mash turned into a 105 min one. I also did two batch sparges, one for 15 mins, and the second for 30 mins that gave me time to nip to the primary school and talk about my toy Mk II escort (in blue). Then back home, and the second sparge was drained, and all the wort put into the boiler. I had managed to collect 20L, instead of the planned 19; how this happened I've no idea. I batch, rather than fly sparge and measure my water in and out of the HLT. I can only think I miscounted.
So, adjusted figures were pre-boil gravity 1051 (predicted 1048) and post boil 1060 (predicted 1059). Perhaps the extended mashing bumped the efficiency up a little?
The lovely cool autumnal , mains water got the wort down to 21 degrees with no drama, and Wilko's Nottingham was pitched, with the fermentation fridge set to 20.
That's my brewery(!) at 100% capacity ~ Kolsch in a water bath, ESB in bottles conditioning / carbing up in another and the stout in the fermenting fridge. I haven't got any more inkbirds to control anything, so until the ESB bottles are ready for cold conditioning, I will have to find something else to do.
I'm thinking along the lines of a home made heated brew cupboard to replace inefficient water baths, but we'll see.