Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Brew Day and Dog Treat Day

Sunday was brew day at the Nelson house.  It was also dog treat making day.  I brewed up a Russian Imperial Stout while Erin made dog treats from the rest of the spent grains from my last beer.  Our dog absolutely loves them, and so do most other people's dogs that we've given some of the treats to.  If I ever find some guy to give me several million dollars to start a brewery, I know what we'll be doing with the grains!  It's a pretty simple recipe, though I don't have the amounts handy.  Basically, you combine the spent grains (since hops can be bad for dogs, if you've used hops at all in the mash, I'd not use them for dog treats) with some peanut butter, eggs, and flour.  Roll it out and cut it into shapes or whatever you desire (Erin uses cookie cutters of various shapes, for these batches, it was mostly Haloween and football-themed).  Bake at 350 for 30 minutes, then turn down to 225 and go for two more hours.  Once they cool down, your dog won't be able to get enough.

As for the brew day, I went with this recipe for my D30 Russian Imperial Stout (in keeping with the artillery-theme for most of my beers so far, this one is named for a Soviet-era 122mm howitzer that the Afghan Army currently uses).

19lbs 2-row
1.5lbs Chocolate Malt
1.25lbs Special B
1.5lbs Roasted Barley
1lb Black Malt

Mashed for 90 minutes at 153 (overshot a little, and mashed around 155-156)

2oz Magnum @ 90 minutes
2oz E. Kent Goldings @ 30 minutes
2oz E. Kent Goldings @ 10 minutes

Chilled to around 75* (a little hot, but I had a broken thermometer, so I was working off a meat thermometer) and pitched my WLP002 yeast starter.  Got it down to 65ish* pretty quickly, and it's been happy there ever since.  Used a blowoff tube, which was a good thing, because it got pretty vigorous pretty quickly.  It's slowed down since, but it's still happily bubbling away.

Pre-pitch gravity was 1.095.  I was trying for 1.097, so not that far off.  Final abv should come in between 8.5 and 9%, depending on attenuation.  IBUs (calculated) will be around 85.

I'm planning on transferring to a keg after 14-21 days, whenever it hits FG.  Then I'm going to age it in the keg at room temperature for 4 months or so, then move it to the fridge and carb it up.  Hopefully it turns out as good as it smelled brewing it!