Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Home Brew Wednesday - Gus HBW #2 Obscurité (Darkness)

Time for another home brew post!!!  This one has an explosive ending!

I'm set hard in my Belgian kick for home brews right now.  I decided I wanted to make a house beer.  One that I try to keep around at all times in bottles, or eventually on tap.  I ran down to Brewhaha last Friday and picked up my supplies for this brew.  Nick had fixed me up a partial recipe a couple days before.  I'm going to base my beer off of it.  I'm brewing it the first time from his recipe and then I'll change some things and make it more of my own.  He was a great help!  I'll list the recipe below.  I had a few changes to it.  I'll let you know what those were as well.

8.60 lbs Briess Pilsen LME - 60 mins
2.50 lbs Munich Malt - 60 mins
0.70 ozs Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L - 60 mins
0.30 lbs Briess Chocolate - 60 mins
0.40 lbs Bries Extra Special - 60 mins
0.80 lbs Briess Red Malt Wheat - 60 mins
1.00 lbs Candi Sugar, Clear - 60 mins

1.50 ozs Northern Brewer 8.50% - 60 mins

2 - White Labs WLP530 Abbey Ale Yeast

I took exception to the 8.6 lbs Briess Pilsen LME (Liquid Malt Extract) and used 6.6 lbs but added 2 lbs of Pilsen DME (Dry Malt Extract).  I did this because they sell the LME in 3.3 lb containers and I didn't want to have the extra.  Next time I may could use the full 9.9 lbs.  But I think next time I will go All Grain with this recipe.

So I had all of my ingredients.

It was time to start my mini mash and get this brew going.  I heated my water and poured the grains in to begin the mashing process.  Mashing brings out all of the fermentable sugars from the malt and grains.  It's what feeds the yeast to ferment and create alcohol.

After I had mashed the grains for an hour at the suggested temperature I added my LME and DME.  Then I brought the wort to a boil and added my bittering hops.  When the time was up I set the pot in the sink to cool.  It took a few hours to cool to the right temperature but when it did I filtered the wort into the fermenting bucket and added spring water to bring it to 5 gallons.  I took my Original Gravity reading and it came out to 1.081.  Almost directly on target!  I pitched my two vials of White Labs Abbey Ale yeast and sealed her up.  It should take 7-10 days to ferment.  It could be shorter or longer.  I will have to take a gravity reading to see if I'm there.  For now it's time to wait!

I pitched the yeast into the wort on 1-12-13.  By the next day the brew was already fermenting hard.  On Monday 1-14-13 I walked into my kitchen after getting home from work and found this.

A good old fashioned homebrew bomb! ha ha!  It's a good thing I had moved the brew from my closet to my kitchen.  I wanted to keep the brew colder as it fermented and the concrete floor in the kitchen was the perfect place.  The airlock had filled up with kraussen as the brew was fermenting so hard.  The pressure became too much and it blew the lid!  I cleaned everything back up and resanitized.  Put a new airlock in and sealed the top again.  Hopefully I won't have any more blow offs!  I learned my lesson that when I'm pitching two vials of yeast in a higher gravity brew, that I'll use a blow off hose instead of an airlock from now on.

Thanks for readying the second Home Brew Wednesday installment!  If anyone has any questions or suggestions let me know!  I hope to keep this up as I'm getting more into the brewing side of craft beer.  My next post will be soon.  I hope to get some info up in the DIY part of equipment used in home brewing.  Comment, subscribe and follow!  Let us know how we are doing!