Tuesday, December 15, 2015


A quick update on how things are progressing on the beers I’m planning on entering into Bluebonnet next month.  The saison has finished carbonating, and it’s delicious.  Just as good as the first batch.  This is the first time I’ve successfully recreated a beer using the exact same recipe, and have it turn out just as good, if not better, than the first time, so I’m pretty pumped.  I’ll get 3 bottles filled here soon and set them aside for the competition.

I still need to see if the quad is going to yield 3 more bottles or not.  I’m putting that off, letting it age in the keg a little longer.  I have one bottle left over from the original bottling, but since those were gushers at Operation Bravo, I’m not going to use it as an entry.  I’ll probably toss it in the beer fridge soon and then open it to see how it is.

The dunkelweizen is just about finished fermenting.  I’ll probably take a couple of readings this week, and if it all looks, tastes, and smells good, I’ll be kegging this weekend, or early next week, then getting it on the CO2.  I could potentially have it ready for Christmas even, if I force carb it with the over-pressure and shake method.  We’ll see.

After Christmas, I’m planning on brewing up an English Best Bitter.  That should be ready fairly quickly.  I’ve tentatively named it The Chestnut Troop, after A Battery, Royal Horse Artillery.  It is the senior Battery in the British Regiment of Artillery, and I think it has a cool ring for a beer name!

It’s a pretty simple recipe, too:

8lbs Maris Otter
1lb British Crystal 60L
.5lb Flaked Corn
.5lb Flaked Barley

Mash at 152F

1.5oz Fuggles @ 60
1oz EKG @ 15
.5oz Fuggles @ 5

60 minute boil

Planning on using WLP002, English Ale yeast.  Should be a pretty quick fermentation, then into the keg for a very small amount of carbonation.  I’ll be able to bottle before entries are due on 1/28 easily.

The last entry is going to be a team entry with our good friends over at New Main Brewing.  David Clark and I are going to brew up an English Dark Mild.  As the name suggests, it’s a little darker (more like a light brown or amber, than truly dark as most people would think of) and very low in ABV.  It’s a very sessionable beer.  We’re going to do a double batch, and each ferment part, and enter whichever turns out better.

As for Operation Bravo next year, there’s probably about a 50/50 chance I won’t be able to enter.  If it’s the weekend before Veteran’s Day (11/5), I’ll most likely be out of town, and if it’s the weekend right after Veteran’s Day (11/12), I could have drill.  We’ll see, I suppose.  I’m going to continue with my brewing calendar plans as if I am entering.  I’m going to probably do the quad again, but this time early in the year so it has more time to age.  I’m aiming for February.

Sticking with Belgian beers, I’m going to try my hand at a Tripel in March or April, probably.  That’ll be one of my entries for Labor of Love.  I’ve been working on a recipe for a Tripel for quite a while now, tweaking here and there as I continue to learn about this process.  I’ll try to have it finalized in the next couple of months.

That’s all for now.  We’ll talk again after the brew day for the bitter.  Merry Christmas to all!