It was a busy brew related weekend for me! I hosted the RAZE brewclub meeting at my house Friday night. Not everybody could make it but I sampled some awesome beers, saw a cool oxygen free beer transfer gadget, and talked a lot about brewing. On Saturday I took the fam to the zoo and then made a stop at Midwest Supplies. I grabbed a bunch of Warrior hops, some Summit and Strisselspalt hops, a bunch of o-rings, a good supply of US-05, a smackpack of one of the new Wyeast VSS releases (Imperial Ale - here), and a new book: Farmhouse Ales. Today was brewday, so I did a partial mash Oatmeal Stout. This was my first time brewing an Oatmeal Stout so I used Jamil's recipe from Brewing Classic Styles, although I did make a few minor changes based on what I had on hand. I also managed to rack my Hopsicle IPA into secondary on top of an ounce of Columbus hops. Now I'm relaxing with a homebrew.
I'm thinking I'm going to brew an Imperial IPA again pretty soon. I've got pounds of hops in the freezer and a fresh smackpack of the Imperial Ale yeast, so it is officially on deck. Rather than screw with a starter though, I think I'm just going to brew an APA with it and save the cake. I'll probably brew that next weekend and try out my new Warrior hops and possibly first wort hopping too. Three weeks after that I should be ready to brew the Imperial and have it ready for Kristen's birthday.
So for Christmas I got a 365 days of beer page-a-day calendar. Saturday's beer was Saison Dupont. Reading that got me fired up about saisons like Ommegang's Hennepin so I adopted another resolution for the year: learn how to brew a good saison. So far it's a pretty good read. I'm thinking about brewing my first one after the APA. EDIT: Monday I picked up a 4 pack of Ommegang Hennepin, a 750 of Saison Dupont, and Surly Cynic for research.
In other brew news, Kristen actually suggested that I get a propane hot water on demand system and build a small shed of some sort with a sink and stuff so that I can have everything I need on the brew patio and not have to make so many trips in an out of the house and back and forth to the garage/basement. I love that woman. I'm thinking an inline filter might be a good idea too. Any suggestions on what I should do?