Thursday, February 10, 2011

Still sore...

So, I had the chance to hang out, and brew with a local brewmaster.

Holy fuck, I learned a lot, and had a great time.. Brewing is still fun, even at commercial level!

This particular place was a local brewpub, with a ~10bbl system. Smallish by commercial standards, but probably on the high end of physical effort per bbl, compared to larger systems (Im only hoping here) I was working from roughly 9:30AM to 6:30 PM

We brewed an Irish dry stout, scheduled to be on tap March 16th. Just in time for St. Patrick's day! (Downtown Joes regulars, Be there.. I know I will!)

The recipe was pretty straightforward, in deference to the brewer, I'm not gonna post it, but it was interesting to me to help build a 370ish pound grain bill. roughly 7 lbs of hops went in as well.

It was a super dark color coming off the tun, smelled of coffee and chocolate.. Great smelling brew. Target ABV. was roughly 4.5 (IIRC)

I got the whole newbie experience.. Sweep out the grain room, load out the spent grain, then wash the tun, climb into, and scrub out the copper boil kettle... A lot of interesting learning. The brewmaster was awesome, very sharp, and in tune with dialing in chemistry so its just right. A professional..

Still, the fucker made me work till I was shaking, and I'm still sore today.. :) Climbing into, and scrubbing a copper boil kettle with a scour pad isn't nearly as glamorous as it sounds. Its hot, sweaty, cramped (and cramping, like of the leg muscle kind)

I feel proud of the beer I helped on. I think its going to sell well, and I cant wait to get a taste of it once it hits the taps.

If you have a small brewpub in your area, and can spare a (full) day, I think you could do a lot worse than offering to be a beerbitch for a day. I got free beer, food, and more learning in one day than in months of 'net researching, and trial and error.

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