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Sunday, September 29, 2013


Well, it's been a rather tough road, recently. Without boring you, a number of things have popped up to put pressure on my very limited resources. Obviously, you have to take care of the essentials, and beer supplies are not on that list.

But now, I do have some money, so I was able to order stuff for 3 batches; a brown ale, a pumpkin ale, and a Baltic porter, with crazy hops.

I'm really torn on what to do with the pumpkin ale. Do I want a straight pumpkin beer, with the actual pumpkin taste taking center stage? Or, should I make a spiced ale, with pie spice? I really like both, and either would be a fun brew.

I guess I'll just wait and see how I feel on brew day, since I have enough on hand to do either one.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Celebrate? Well, Sort Of

Today is my birthday. I'm 60, and more grateful for each passing day. By the accident of when I was born, I share this day with a far more somber anniversary.

As I browsed the various news accounts of ceremonies and remembrances, I was suddenly moved to tears by an account about Flight 93, known as the plane that fought back.

Think of the courage. I'm sure they knew they would probably die, yet they decided not to be bystanders, pawns, but to take action.

Is that kind of resolve in me? I hope I never have to find out. But, if it ever comes to that point, knowing they found it may help.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

More Beer!

 So, a couple of nights ago, I helped my niece, Emily, bottle her second-ever beer. I had given her an assist in putting together the recipe, and brewing the beer.

What we made (we hope) was a Russian Imperial Stout. Emily really likes dark ales, and we wanted to push the envelope just a little bit.
 We soaked the labels of some Sam Adams bottles, I brought over some caps, and my old wing capper.
Altogether, we got 8 bottles of beer. Not bad. The ninth bottle had about an inch and a half of beer, so we decided to just taste it. Obviously, it'll change after conditioning and aging. But, if first impressions are any indication at all, this is going to be one of the finest beers I've ever tasted.

It wasn't a fancy recipe. Here it is:

: Imperial Stout
Batch: 1.00 galExtract

Recipe Gravity: 1.087 OG
Recipe Bitterness: 49 IBU
Recipe Color: 76° SRM
Estimated FG: 1.022
Alcohol by Volume: 8.4%
Alcohol by Weight: 6.6%

American black patent         0.50 lb, Grain, Steeped
Crystal 120L                  0.50 lb, Grain, Steeped
Dark malt extract             2.00 lb, Extract, Extract

Willamette                    0.50 oz, Pellet, 0 minutes
Willamette                    0.50 oz, Pellet, 60 minutes

British Ale yeast             1.00 unit, Yeast,