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Posts Tagged ‘secondary’

No new brewday reports must signal that it’s time to start planning the next brew. We also need to plan keg and bottle capacity with the Christmas break in mind. It’s been a hectic year away from the Boxshed, and we’re looking forward to a nice chunk of downtime over the Christmas holiday. We’re plotting to get on a bit of a cooking and pickling buzz too, so we need a few beers on tap to offer anyone popping over for some seasonal cheer.

We’ll reserve our keg of Timmy’s Original for December, and perhaps some Dark Garden too, but will be tapping the Brown Corduroys this weekend and drinking it over forthcoming Bonfire nights. Ideally we’ll brew twice more over the next three weeks to create a Boxshed Dry Irish Stout ’09 (yummy with port!), plus an-all new Premium Pale Ale, maybe with a twist.

This means paying bills for old supplies and restocking with Marris Otter and one or two other speciality malts, ordering up some liquid yeast and preparing a starter for the stout, fixing two poppet valves in two faulty kegs, getting hold of some new sanitisers, cleaning a lot of bottles and other vessels, devising a new recipe for a fun pale, and seeing the Timmy’s Original safely into kegs.

All we’ve managed to do this weekend however is move the Timmy’s Original from primary fermenters to clean secondaries. It reached 1.012 with no problems, looks clear, smells great and just needs to be cared for this week prior to racking. Dry-hopping is also an (unlikely) option, but we’ll update if we go take that route.

In the meantime, for no good reason, here are a couple of photos of the Timmy’s transfer, leaving all that once-frenzied trub nicely behind.

PS – There’s an Autumn beer and cider festival going down every day this week at The White Horse, Edwardstone, Suffolk, culminating in a blue grass shindig on Hallloween itself. If you’re in the area, you really ought to pop over there for a pint or six. Here’s the brew list.

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Just a quick update of various movements of beers between different buckets, kegs and bottles. It may not look much but then you didn’t have to clean the stone out of the bottles and kegs with a pipe brush and a hosepipe…

The Boxshed Top Secret Autumn Ale finished secondary fermentation, dropping nice and clear. We put 25L into a primed King Keg, which was kept in the warm to build up some pressure and to allow venting of oxygen before being transferred to my bruv’s house down country lanes in the passenger seat of an ageing hatchback. A further 19L filled a cornie for the Boxshed, while several bottles were primed and filled as testers and treats. All are now in cold conditioning, in one shed or another!

The Boxshed Dark Garden ’09 finished primary fermentation and has been siphoned into clean FVs for 5-7 days of secondary in readiness for racking off to a similar selection of kegs and bottles to the Autumn Ale, which has by the way now been given a (hopefully) beguilingly dull name.

*Hopefully there will be news of another brewday later in the week – watch this space*

A few grainy pictures of various transfers:

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Sorry for the lack of photos this time round – I must have mislaid my camera somewhere between the shed and the house – normal service resumed one day soon I’m sure.

On 1st December we moved the Premium APA into secondary for a further week of fermentation and to drop clear before kegging. I tested the gravity at 1.018 from 1.058 which is spot on but rather surprising as I was resigned to the fact the Fermentis would break it down below the desired level and create a stronger brew than intended. As things have turned out, we’re very happy and unless anyone knows differently, will expect a final ABV of around 5.25%, which will probably be rounded up to 5.3% to take into account some natural priming.

I was also considering dry hopping this one with a further ounce of Cascade, but the sample I smelled and drank during transfer was pungent with hops and I feel will drink well as it stands. In a way I suppose I’m compromising in order not to create a beer so hoppy that it puts off as many people as it attracts, but I genuinely think the current bitterness, malt and aroma balance is worth conditioning and testing. I’ll let you know if I was right after the keg has been drained sometime in the New Year!

For now the APA is resting like a golden millpond. There is sufficient to fill the keg currently housing our Dark Garden, plus a further eight bottles or so which will be used for early testing (!), presents and perhaps future events.

 

*  On the same day we also kegged and bottled the Seasonal Stout, which had been lurking in secondary for long enough at 1.010 waiting for a clean keg. This dry Irish stout tasted superb out of secondary FV and frankly could be drunk with a nice port and a chunk of blue cheese without ever seeing a tap! So we have high hopes for this one, which also stretched to seven swing-top bottles for future sampling. Both the bottles and the keg were naturally primed with neutral glucose. They’ll now sit in the warm for a week before being shipped out to the Boxshed for conditioning, and tapping on Christmas Eve.

**  I found my camera – sadly a little late – but here are two resting shots anyway!

 

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After a week or so in primary, this impressive smelling stout was ready to be moved into secondary. I also wanted to take this opportunity to harvest that valuable liquid yeast, which by now had grown and taken over the bottom of the FV bucket, and which threatened to turn into The Magic Porridge Pot. It will stay in secondary for at least another week, then I’ll post a kegging/bottling update and sort out another brewday, finally…

 

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This Best is now in cold conditioning in the Boxshed and looking in fine shape for some festive drinking. Here is a gallery explaining how things developed following the dry hops going in to the secondary. I’m hoping this will prove good enough to become a regular stock brew, and I’m definitely looking forward to drinking a few pints of this with my family in the run up to Christmas. It was a carefully thought through recipe to appeal to them, and I’m sure my brother and cousin will help me test it thoroughly!

 

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Checked on this today after four days in primary and it had hit its 1.012 target perfectly – nice.

I transferred it into a secondary bucket, leaving all the break and yeast crud behind, and just taking nice clean brown hoppy beer looking stuff into a new home where it will now sit for about ten days.

After checking my hop stocks I found that for some reason I’d left behind a measly 21g of Styrians the other night instead of throwing it in as extra aroma hops. So I boiled up a muslin, some marbles and some thread and bagged the extra hoppage up, popping into the secondary for seven days of dry-hopping.

The secondary is burping once again, so I actually expect this to drop a few points further over that time, but it really has no need to on my account, it smells good and is strong enough for me. Nice colour too, so I’m pretty happy all in all. Plenty of time to screw it up still though.

 

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