Friday, September 30, 2011
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
As mentioned in a previous post early on I wanted to make something my wife would drink as an effort to make funding my home brew hobby more attractive. Here's my first attempt. I had to let it sit way longer than I anticipated before it was any good, but now 13 months later I'm glad I saved them.
Dan's Cranberry Hard Lemonade August 2010 edition
1/2 lb sugar
~10 oz. light DME
Meijer brand lemonade concentrate (be sure whatever you use has no preservatives)
Cranberry concentrate (again no preservatives)
Again, in case you weren't reading carefully- NO PRESERVATIVES, SORBATES or SULFITES in the juice concentrate!
Heat 3 cups water to ~120 degrees.
Dissolve DME and sugar in hot water.
Add juice and the DME/sugar solution to 1 gallon carboy. (If you don't have a carboy a glass sun tea jar will make a nice substitute).
Top off to 1 gallon.
Cool to room temperature and pitch yeast.
Air lock until fermentation completes.
For me this worked out to an OG of 1.068 and ended about 1.012 for an ABV of about 7.35%. It was a fast fermentation and I feel like I could have added more sugar and kept it going. But this was a first attempt and I didn't want to push it.
I bottled with 2/3 cup corn sugar. That was probably way too much as the first bottles I opened were gushers. After a year there's still a lot of carbonation but they're not going all Old Faithful on me any more. Nice bubbly taste and a decent enough ABV to make it worth my while. These are refreshing on a hot day.
It turns out the wife didn't like them. So- more for me.
Saturday, September 24, 2011
1) Bigger boil. I've moved from a 3 gal stock pot to a 7.5 gal turkey fryer.
2) No more wife complaining about the smell of the sweet wort boiling in the kitchen.
I have to say, I'm probably more excited about #2. So is my wife.
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
These started as a way for me to include my wife in my brews, but she ultimately didn't like them because of the malt, even though the crap she drinks (like Mike's hard) is just a malt beverage anyway. It turns out if you let them sit for a year, they're not bad. And at 11% it gets the job done pretty fast.
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
Monday, September 5, 2011
A little over a year ago I got the urge to start making my own beer. I developed a taste for better beer- you know something beyond the $5 six-pack of the typical national light or lite beer you get at the gas station. I also found that my new found taste was much more expensive than I expected. After watching my brother-in-law start successfully making his own beer at home, I decided to give it a shot. I spent about $100 on equipment and my first extract ingredient kit and gave it a go. Six weeks later I was drinking an American amber ale that I'd made myself. And I've never looked back.
This blog represents my story. I've learned a few things along the way that I'm more than happy to share. Admittedly, I've still got a long way to go, but maybe I can learn something through this outlet along the way. I'm hoping to make the move to all grain brewing soon and will be sure to document that process here so we can learn together. You enjoy the blog, I'll enjoy the brew.