Friday, January 30, 2009

Fermentation Friday - Janurary

This months topic is "brew year’s resolutions’ for 2009". For this year I decided to keep it simple and only choose 5 resolutions. They are:

1) Brew every 4-6 weeks (didn't do this last year)

2) Brew/learn more about lagers, brewing water & master balanced styles (I now have a lagering system)

3) Update/organize my blog more frequently (w/text & pics) (I went in spurts last year)

4) Enter (a few) competitions (never got the timing right last year)

5) Purchase grain/hops in bulk (& find a place to store them) (make it cheaper)


Monday, January 26, 2009


(l) WLP-810, (r) Saflager S-23
Today, I bottled the 2 Steam Beers. One w/WLP 810 San Fran. Lager and the other Saflager S-23 dry lager yeast. Every variable was the same except for: #1) different yeast (White Labs 810 vs Saflager S-23), #2) amount of yeast pitched into the wort (1 WLP-810 vial into 4gallons vs Saflager (1) packet into 1 gallon). The WLP fermented to FG 1.015, while the Saflager FG was 1.012.

How did they taste @ bottling?

Color: same. Aroma: both were bready, w/hints of hop aroma/bitterness. I think WLP-810 has a slight fruitiness, which is what the yeast is famous for; a lager taste w/a slight ale character. WLP-810= Clean lager taste w/bready character and clean bitterness followed by a dry aftertaste. Saflager= clean lager taste and a noticable subdued malty/bitterness and hop flavor, it finishes with a dry aftertaste.
Saflager S-23: OG: 1.012

Overall: The beers seemed to look, smell, taste similar until they were tasted side by side. The Saflager seems to have more of a "lager" feel, a subdued malty/hop character, while the WLP-810 definetly had the characteristics of an ale and lager. I guess no surprises here. They are both highly drinkable and compliment the spring weather we currently have here in San Diego!!! I can't wait to taste the final product and compare these beers to my friends steam beer, whom used the same recipe, but used different (n. brewer) hops. When I make this beer again I will use the WLP-810 and I think I would use the Saflager S-23 for an altbier or any other lager for that matter.
WLP-810: F.G. 1.015

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A day late and a dollar short...

For the past 6 months my homebrew club has been trying to gather everyone to start a second study group for the BJCP test that will occur in mid march. I missed the first study group and test when I missed a club meeting and sign up. There were 40 people who took the class and test, apparently, the biggest ever to do so. Now it seems I have missed the second group as the first meeting occured this past thursday, which I learned of friday morning...damn it.

I have decided that although I can not make the study group I will try to study on my own and take the test, which I heard is not easy. I want to take the test mainly to learn more about beer (history, making, production etc.) than wanting it for judging beer. I find the judging portion to be very opinionated, anyway, wish me luck.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Lee Chase, pizza and beer...

A new fine restaurant to visit in Normal Heights, San Diego...yeah! The Blind Lady Ale house is partly owned/operated by Lee Chase. Lee in the past was the original head brewer at Stone Brewing Co.. The restaurant is set to open at the end of this month and will focus on pizza's and has 21 taps on hand, mmm. There is a secret party that my homebrew club has been invited to, but I am not sure that I can attend. If I do I will post pics.

You can read all about it at the Blind Lady Alehouse blog!

Oh, btw he will be serving a batch of organic belgian single that he brewed at Mission Brewery.

Friday, January 02, 2009

My Top 5

2009 = keeping it simple
In the spirit of resolutions and an all-time Top 5 movie of mine, High Fidelity, I will give you my top 5 brewing goals of this coming year.

1) Brew every 4-6 weeks
2) Brew/learn more about lagers, brewing water & master balanced styles
3) Update/organize my blog more frequently (w/text & pics)
4) Enter (a few) competitions
5) Purchase grain/hops in bulk (& find a place to store them)