Sunday, February 3, 2008

Super Bowl Sunday

Way to go Giants! I am so happy to see that cheater Bellichek get beat. Anyways, I haven't brewed in a while, just done some menial brewing chores. I have really been enjoying drinking my homebrews.
  • I'm on the last minikeg of Deported Stout, and I will be sad to see it go. I remember when I first started drinking this batch and it had some bad fusels, headache city. Now I taste the big roasted and chocolatey malt, and it still has a big hop kick to it too.
  • The 618 2IPA is also just getting better and better. This beer is 97 IBUs! I'm lucky to be on heartburn meds, otherwise I would be really suffering after a bomber of this one. Definitely my best IPA so far.
  • The Blonde Abbey is also tasting really good. I picked up a mix and match 6er a couple of weeks ago and grabbed a Leffe Blonde (what NB's Lefse Blonde kit is supposed to copy) and an Affligem Blonde. My beer is really close to the Affligem, so I'm stoked that my first Belgian turned out as good as it did.
  • The Full Monty Cherry Bitter has been a pleasant surprise. When I bottled this, the sample tasted like it was going to be a dumped batch, it totally tasted like ass. I carbed it pretty high and let it sit for a month before I started drinking it, and now it's actually pretty good. It finished pretty dry, probably because of the pound of brown sugar to boost gravity. You can definitely taste the tartness of the Montmorency cherries contrasting with the bitterness of the hops. It's not my best beer, but considering what I thought it was going to be, I'm pretty happy that it's totally drinkable and actually enjoyable.
  • I bottled my Bourbon Barrel Brown today, and I am super excited about this one! If you remember from the last post, I designed this beer from scratch with "Designing Great Beers". I had steamed an ounce of oak chips and soaked them in 5 ounces of Maker's Mark bourbon for about a month, and just racked the beer into secondary on top of the oak chips and bourbon last Tuesday. I pulled a sample Friday night and I could definitely taste the oak, so I knew it was time to bottle. I actually left about 30 ounces of this in the bottling bucket just so that I could drink this today. The oak is pretty obvious, but you can totally taste the hops and malty goodness too. If it tastes this good on bottling day, I've got very high hopes for this when it's carbed. It will be hard to keep this one in the house.
  • On the non-homebrew front, I've been drinking some Abita TurboDog lately, and I highly recommend this American Brown Ale. It's super tasty.

What are you drinking?


Bri said...

It's been a while, but I remember Lefse Blonde to be an excellent beverage. I hope I can sample that one some time soon Rich. I've been drinking Bell's Expedition Stout, one is enough to give you a buzz at 10.5% alc. I quickly went through a 12er of Sam Adams Winter Lager. Also just tried Lagunitas India Pale Ale, very easy to drink IPA. I had several Bohemia's during the super bowl, my new favorite mexican brew. Just tonight I had a Chimay Ale Blue. That was awesome. I love that beer. I followed it up with my Fat Tire Clone on tap, it tastes great right now. I'm hoping it lasts a few more weeks. I've got a few choice beers in the fridge right now, a Samiclaus and a Westmalle Dubble. The Samiclaus is brewed once a year on Dec 6th and is actually a malt liquor at 14% alc. This particular beer was brewed and bottled in 2006. The label says the longer it ages, the more complex the flavors are. It looks so exciting I'm anxious, yet hesitant to drink it. It's been burning a ring of fire on the shelf in my fridge for a week. My coffee stout should be ready. I haven't split the CO2 yet. I just need to get my ass to the homebrew store. Your Bourbon Barrel Brown souds awesome. Well, now I'm thirsty. Cheers!

SWART said...

Just ordered the Phat Tire kit and an ESB kit from NB today. Sara and the baby are going to Florida for a few days to see family so I am going to get some brewing done next week.
As for drinking, I just made another big run to BevMo that made Sara upset with the amount I spent. I got a few sampler packs from some of my favorite breweries; Lakefront (Milwaukee), Unibrou (Quebec) and New Belgium. Lately Ive really been enjoying the Sierra Nevada Fresh Hop Ale and just love Brother Thelonious from North Coast. As for my own, I am finishing up my Pumpkin Ale and the rest of my Basic Brown Porter.

P.S. Sooooo happy to see Randy Moss NOT win a super bowl. Also, wasnt it great to see Belichek's true colors in walking off the field before the game was over!

rich.tessler said...

Bell's Expedition is one of my all time favorites. There's a bar here that used to carry it for 3 bucks a bottle, an awesome deal. I don't think they knew what they had. Westmalle Dubbel is awesome, I'm leaning towards making that one of my next brews, although I saved and split the yeast cake from the Bourbon Barrel Brown so I can/should brew a couple of beers with 1056 yeast. I was thinking about brewing an all late hop addition pale ale, then maybe the dubble. I still haven't tried Chimay or Unibroue yet, I'll have to stock the cellar soon. Has anybody tried this year's Sierra Nevada Bigfoot Barleywine yet?

Belichek, what a POS.

Bri said...

I just ordered rhyzomes from northern brewer. Cascade and Centennial. Now I just need to figure out where to grow them.

Also order the dubble extract kit.

If that bar still has expedition stout on tap, I will make a trip to minnesota just for that drinking opportunity.

rich.tessler said...

Rhizomes? You are the man! I was thinking about growing them at our garden in RedWing, but I'm not sure how happy Gary would be about that one. I was thinking about running cables or ropes from the ground to the barn along one wall to serve as the trellis. I could probably fit at least 4 plants, but I'm not sure if there would be good enough exposure.

I'll get the dubbel kit too, then we can compare in a couple of months.

Bri said...

I received my dubble ingrediant kit today from Northern Brewer. Unfortunately, the wyeast was frozen solid. I'm pretty bummed about that. I never even thought about that possibility. I looked on some forums, basically I need to buy new. So I'm hoping that my lhbs will have the yeast I need, 1214 bel abbey. I will keep this pack, thaw it slowly and give it a try. :(

rich.tessler said...

Dude, that sucks! Did you call them about it? If they won't replace it I would just get a bottle of Chimay and culture the yeast. That's what I'm going to do with my dubbel. I've got the Chimay red in my fridge right now and I'll probably drink it this weekend, leave a 1/2 inch in the bottom, swirl it up good, flame the bottle opening for a few seconds, then toss it in with a weak starter (1 cup DME to one pint of water maybe?). Same amount of cash as buying yeast but then you get to drink an awesome bottle of beer too:) It might take a week or 2 to step up the starter enough for a healthy yeast population, but I'm in no hurry to brew that one, I'm brewing up a hopburst pale ale this weekend if I can find hops.

Kristen and I went out for burgers tonight and I had Brewery Ommegang's Hennepin Saison and a SN Bigfoot barleywine, both on tap! I actually bought a 6er of bigfoot this weekend, but that saison was a first. Great beer! I'm thinking sometime this spring I will definitely brew a batch of saison.

I also was eyeing up Bell's Hopslam in the liquor store the other day, but at 15 bucks for a 6 pack I just couldn't bring myself to buy it. I'm sure I'll break down soon though.

SWART said...

I just recieved my kits today from Northern Brewer and it had been sitting on my stoop since early afternoon in 70+ heat. I also question what temps it had from MN to here. Should that be a concern? There is only one local store and they dont have much of a selection so I pretty much have to order.

As I am on my own I turned Saturday night into my own taste test. I concentrated on pale ales and found that my favorite was the Double Daddy Imperial IPA by Speakeasy. I loved it.

Also, since you mentioned it and I had recently gotten it, I had two Bigfoot Barleywines. Pretty good as well. How do you guys like the line of Rogue Beers?

Ill be brewing this weekend, how about you guys?

rich.tessler said...

Jeremy, you should check Oregon and Washington for homebrew shops. I bet you could find someone closer so there would be less time in transit for next weekend. BTW, 70 degrees? I do NOT feel sorry for you :)

I just picked up my ingredients for brewing this weekend. I'll be brewing an American Pale Ale with an OG around 1.060 with 5 ounces of Cascades in it. I'm going to try hopbursting for massive hop flavor and aroma, so it's all late hop additions starting at 20 minutes and adding another ounce every 5 minutes until flameout. Yum! What are you brewing?

I did in fact break down and pick up a 6er of Bell's Hopslam. Wow! 10% alcohol and a ridiculous hop presence. They couldn't have picked a better name. It's got a really cool sweet malty backbone to it, it says it's brewed with honey on the bottle. Very very tasty.