This week was an exciting week around my house in terms of beer! I finished up processing the IPA (racking, carbonating etc.) While also brewing a new IPA the recipe was all very similar with very minor hop substitutions to experiment around a little bit.
Out with the old!
So here we have it! The long awaited IPA is in full bloom! I traveled down to my friends house in Santa Cruz for the weekend to pay a visit! While we were down there we were able to use his carbonating system for my beer. Taking the carbonating process for 2-3 weeks down to 1-2 days. Normally when beer is bottled you prime it with a little bit of sugar (normally simple sugar, if you don’t want any extra flavors). The Co2 produced from fermenting this sugar in an air tight space carbonates the beer. Instead we infused a five gallon keg of our beer, as if we were going to tap it and then poured the beer into bottles. Needless to say we will be investing in a carbonating setup sooner then later! The review for my first IPA home brew can be found at Home Brew IPA review
In with the new!
Please refer to my previous post “An IPA is born!” for a list of tools and ingredients that you’ll need along the way! Unfortunately I haven’t documented the process but this time around I harvested the healthy yeast from the bottom of my last beer, cultivated it with sugar water and heat, and pitched that into this IPA. There are always trace amounts of yeast and bacteria present in any brewery or winery and it creates a kind of heritage or “terroir” in your end products! We are continuing to harvest and care for our yeast populations from beers past in hopes of creating a “yeast library” of our own!
Subtle differences between siblings:
So this time around I changed up what hops I’ll be using in order to expand my knowledge on the subtleties of hops. During the boil I added
- 1 oz. nugget (added at 60 mins)
- 1 oz. northern brewer (added at 20 mins)
- 1 oz. centennial (added at 10 mins)
- 1 oz. chinook (added during wort chill)
- 1 oz. galaxy (added during wort chill)
- 1 oz. northern brewer (added during wort chill)
I also wanted to document the chilling process a little more thoroughly, which is a very crucial stage of your beers life! So the following image is our submerged copper condenser doing what it does best!
In the future I’ll attempt to get some better pictures of the condenser in action but the idea is that you run cold water through the copper coil, which cools the wort by constantly introducing cold water into the much warmer wort. Stirring is highly recommended once the wort reaches about 90 degrees and needs some help along to accomplish its last bit of chilling.
Another piece of equipment I was extremely excited to use is our new grain filter! It made the mash out and sparging process worlds easier!
Aside from everything else I wanted to show you something I am quite proud of!
So this picture may not look like too much is going on in it. But in reality I am sanitizing the carboy, sanitizing the racking siphon, and sparging my grain! As well as prepping my yeast and taking a picture. This picture is a testament that my skills as a brewer have vastly improved and I’m proud of it!! Hopefully you all enjoyed this read please let me know if there’s any part of the process you’re curious about and would like for me to go into more detail with! Also I’ve recently found that pinterest is an awesome resource! If you’re curious, check out my pinterest board. It’s got little fun facts and really good visual diagrams about the different processes that help a lot! It’s all about the journey!