Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Good article on the Aluminum vs Stainless

After much review and reading we have concluded that the real factor to the aluminum vs stainless debate comes down to $$$$$. Aluminum is cheaper then stainless.

The fear factor is still there for many mainly due to lack of knowledge. I still remember my parents telling me not to use aluminum to cook with. But after more reading and study aluminum isn't going to hurt you unless you are brewing acid, then you have other issues. In fact many homebewers are using Keggles, kegs converted into brew kettles, to boil their wort. Most kegs are made of aluminum, due to the money factor.

This is a great article from Beersmith.org.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Wheat Beer

Well we brewed 15 gal. of our wheat beer. We bottled and kegged it on Father's day. 5 gal kegged and 10 six packs.

The beer finished a 5.0 ABV. Nice golden to amber color. Aroma is very nice as well. MMM this is a good beer.

We will be brewing again soon as this batch will not last long. We also have the bug to brew.

We will get some pictures of the brew up soon.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Franconia Brewing

Well we visited this new little brewery in Mckinney, TX Franconia Brewing
We showed up just in time for the tour. I must say I was very impressed!

We were asked by Brent's brother-in-law to not ask a lot of questions or hog up the brewer's time. We both said ok no problem. Well we go inside and Jeff, Brent's brother-in-law, pays for the tour. Cost was $5 a person which included a glass for the beer tasting.

We start the tour with a nice kolsch. Very tasty! The brewer, Dennis, takes us outside to show us the grain silo. I can't recall how much grain it held.

Next stop the grain mill, I love the smell of fresh milled grain. Dennis talked about the milling process. He explained how the grain is separated from the husk and crushed. The husks help form a bed for filtration. Also he explained that you wanted your grain crushed just right. Not to big and not to small. From the mill room we go to the brew room.

He had a 35 gal. brew kettle. They add another barrel of water to the brew kettle! That is 31 gal. of water that is lost due to evaporation.

Around the room was his fermenters. These were all double walled. He had chilled water running through the walls to help maintain fermentation temps. A few were bubbling away! It was awesome.

Next came the walk in cooler. 1800 sq. ft. of R50 rated cooler! In there he had his conditioning tanks and kegs. Dennis explained how they built this cooler by hand to achieve what he wanted.

Dennis explained the whole process very well and was very entertaining. How he knew we were home brewers I do not know. Maybe it was all the head shaking and eyes popping out of our heads. He even put us on the spot to answer a couple of questions from him. We answered correctly! But Dennis added more color to our explanations!

Dennis brewed his first beer at age 12! His family is very involved in brewing back in Germany. You can read more in his site.

Last night I was watching a show on the History Channell called "Sliced" The episode "APA Style
Saloon. (2010). The History Channel website. Retrieved 11:22, May 14, 2010, from http://www.history.com/shows/sliced/episodes/episode-guide"
Well as the show starts I see a familiar logo on the glass they are pouring beer into. It is the Franconia logo! All I could think of was I was at that brewery last weekend!!

Our hats are off to Dennis of Franconia Brewing. For sharing his knowledge and giving us encouragement and fuel for our dream!!
Ich möchte einen Toast auf Dennis ausbringen!
Erst mach' dein' Sach dann trink' und lach!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Mead

Well I secondaried my mead a few weeks ago and it looks good! We got a sample of it and it was awesome!

It is nice and clear. Slight yellow color to it. Smells awesome. Just the right carbonation to boot. I will probably bottle it soon and let it sit.

One bottle will go to my daughter and her fiancée for their wedding. Another bottle will be for their one year anniversary. The rest will be to enjoy!

Man can't wait. This is the hardest part of brewing. The WAIT!!!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Bottled our Doppel Bock in January. It turned out really well. Mine aren't as carbed as I would like, probably got to cold. Moved them into the house "closet cellar" and they got a little carbonation. My brother Brent got his to carb well, he kept them warmer the whole time. So next time I will keep them warmer until they are ready but they are still awesome brews.

These Doppel Bocks make a great winter beer. They will keep you warm that is for sure!

We plan on doing our wheat beer again soon. Going for a double or triple batch. That beer goes pretty quick!

We have a new Home Brew Club in the area starting up. We haven't picked a name yet but that will be decided this month. Lot of good guys and good brews.

If you haven't visited any forums for home brew try Home Brew Chatter. Lots of good info.