Sunday, August 3, 2008

Busy weekend in the brewery

So much cool shiz happened this weekend, I don't even know where to begin. Racked the Pale Ale to a keg. Harvested the yeast from said beer. Brewed the dubbel and spent a few hours dealing with the aftermath of the most violent fermentation I've ever seen. Finally visited the famous Andy's Corner Bar in Bogota. I'm finally able to wind down from all of the excitement and provide some details on brew day...

Here's the lowdown on the dubbel:

13lbs Dingeman's Pilsner Malt
1lb Dingeman's Special B
1lb Brown Soft Belgian Candi Sugar (added to boil)

1oz Polish Marynka hops 6.5%AA bittering hops
1/4oz Hallertau whole leaf hops 4.5% AA boiled 15min

Whirlfloc tab and candi sugar at 15 minutes remaining in the boil, 1/2tsp rehydrated yeast nutrient at 10 min.

Mash at 148˚F for one hour. 1qt:1lb liquor to grist ratio. Add enough boiling water to mash out at 168˚. Collected 7.25 gallons wort at 1.055 SG. Boiled down to 6 gallons at OG 1.077. Cooled to 78˚, gave it 2min O2, and pitched Wyeast Abbey Ale Yeast II slurry.

I meant to get it down to 70˚ out of the wort chiller, but didn't quite get there. I pitched the yeast anyway and figured that it would get down to 70˚ overnight in the fermentation fridge before the yeast kicked in. Well, I was wrong. The next morning the glass that I had the blowoff tube in had completely spilled over and I spent some time cleaning up the considerable mess which, lucky for me, was isolated to the interior of the fridge. The carboy was still reading 78˚. I was able to figure a way to contain the blowoff and get the temp down to 70˚ within a few hours. A day later we're still rocking at 67˚ and holding. Let's hope it doesn't taste disgusting.

Andy's did not disappoint. Large selection of bottled beer, including some not too common here in Jersey (I had a Founders Pale Ale and Centennial IPA). Tap selection had a very local theme - mostly NJ, NY, and PA beers. Great crowd and great bartenders. And one very pleasant surprise is that the customers at Andy's probably have the highest beer IQ of any NJ bar I've ever been to. Plenty of people at the bar enjoying and talking about good beer.

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