Friday, 21 May 2010

A short brewing holiday

By god what a lovely aroma. This late addition to the copper of Motueka, Centennial and Chinook hops counted for approximately 8 bitterness units (which for a late addition means a lot of hops) and was one of 6 hop additions for this American amber style ale. The massive citric and tropical fruit aromas kicking out of the vessel afterwards definitely made taking the day off work to double brew two separate batches of home brew at work worth it. That’s right, taking the day off to go to work and brew. I was thinking of getting a picture of me kicking back with a pint whilst watching everyone else scurry around working, but that would be too much (or you could say taking the piss). But out off all the parts of the brewing process I would probably say adding the hops, then standing over the vessel absorbing the aroma to the full has to be my favorite and most anticipated bit.

Overall the day went  really smoothly and quickly I became ahead of schedule. This was partly due to my new advanced piece of home brewing equipment which I call Panda & Frog home brewery Swann hot liquor tank (or PFSHLT).
Panda & Frog home brewery Swann hot liquor tank

This baby kept my mash liquor for the second brew warm while the first was boiling, allowing a more fluid process. Piece by piece I plan to keep improving my brewery and what I hope for next is a more efficient wort cooling system. A copper that’s not plastic (as you can see above) would also be nice. And while we're on the subject recent exciting news has it that I may be designing a new Daleside special release India Pale Ale in the next few months. Exciting stuff. I can't give much away but I know it will be a tad more hardcore than the current Alnwick IPA.

Mash tun run-off onto the first wort hops

As many of you in the UK would have also noticed, it has been a lot warmer recently with summer round the corner. This means I have had to keep an eye on fermentation temeratures but have saved electricity with the electric heaters. Hopefully it stays warm for plenty of evenings laid out in the sun with various beers or sat in beer gardens drinking summer seasonals from the cask. But hopefully it doesn't get so hot I have to take rescue my fermentations from becoming full of nasty off flavours or even worse infection.  


pdtnc said...

Sounds good :) Keep us posted how it turns out.

Chunk said...

Sounds good. How do you control fermentation temp in the summer? I have no method of cooling so its weather forecast and crossed fingers all the way for me. :P


Rob said...

Generally if I need cooling I put the fermenter in Daleside breweries holding tank room which is kept at 10oC for a little while. To heat it up I use an electric heater a few feet away from the vessel. Overnight temperatures can be unpredictable and guesswork on what to set the heater timer on comes into play.