Hey up and all that; hope you’ve been keeping up with this first brew as if you haven’t none of the below will make sense. Sorry about that. Soon enough this particular ale will be done and more stand alone posts about our ever continuing brew-dyssey will abound, I’m sure. Until that point you should probably catch up with these posts. ..
Now, we return to our gallant heroes bravely commencing an hour long boil. Why an hour long boil you ask? Well intrepid brew glutton, let me tell you… We don’t really know. Our guess is its a length of time that has an effect of fully killing nasties, fully breaking sugars down into the water and it (probably most importantly as hopped syrup kits don’t need this long to boil) enables all the flavour to seep from hop into liquid godliness… I’m sure as we delve into things perfecting our brews we’ll properly find out, but for now we couldn’t really care. We want to get our own beer done and we want to show how easy it can be; that means we’re coming into this cold. Mainly to prove ourselves right!
One thing we had both read about, however, was the ‘hot break’ of the boil. A moment where the liquid boils aggressively and, from images we’ve seen, resembles a honey infused muddy geyser.
Here’s the thing; we don’t know how long this takes, what it means and if its necessary. This gives us a problem because we weren’t, and aren’t, sure our boil did that. Fuckety fuckpigs.
Things never got crazy, really. The closest it looked was when we first put the boil back on after adding our malts. Could this have been it?
I had read in many brews it doesn’t appear as vigorously so I have to say I was less worried about things than Bifurgacheffe, who was astoundingly worried and could be heard muttering ‘what have we done wrong repeatedly’.
What called him? Telling him we couldn’t have done anything differently at this stage. Which, of course, is a lie. We could have done lots differently. The question is, did we want to do anything differently? No we fucking didn’t. This is about guerrilla brewing right now, fighting the odds and getting shit done.
Homebrew commander: Good luck boys. Good fucking luck.
The last 15 minutes of our hour long boil saw us throw a bag filled with cascade hops into the pot, for additional flavour; as we’d lost a fair whack through steam here we topped up with some freshly boiled water and finally we had the task of shutting the brew down.
For this we placed the pot in the kitchen sink which had been filled with cold water; we also got the tap running around the pot every so often to help matters.
Whilst doing this we primed our yeast.
We’d worked out we needed to use two fifths of the packet but Bifur asserted all would be fine if we used the whole packet- yeast, after all, kills itself and if too much booze were produced that just meant excess yeast would die faster. I begrudgingly agreed and we chucked the pack into warmed water with a bit of crystalline malt. We sat the mix on a heat mat and waited.
When our cooling brew was down to body temp (around 37c) we put our primed yeast into the fermenter, topped up with our 2litres of water we initially boiled and then we poured our wort on top ‘aggressively’.
A quick measure of specific gravity, which was 1.041, and capping with the airlock cap, and we’re done. All thats needed now is a couple of week wait atop the warmth of Bif’s heat mat (he has a cold house- a normally warm environ should be fine) and it’ll be ready for bottlin’
… And here’s a PS in the form of a whatsapp message; the bit on the right is me, on the left Bifur.
What was that about???
Oh, hell yeah. Roll on bottling