Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Racer5ish... And ready for the next one.

Long months later, an update. This will be... A beer update. Hoorah.

I've got a nice Racer 5 clone finishing its ferment in the closet over there. Based upon a recipe I found online and then promptly recopied incorrectly, it has, nonetheless, been delivering a host of pleasant aromas each time we open the door. Turns out that So CA in the winter has a perfect ambient temp average of 68 degrees so my ale needs nothing but darkness to shine. Darkness, and proper sanitation, and I'm feeling pretty good about the latter now that I've switched to Star San.

So that little Prez Day project has me stoked to do some more. For the first time ever, I've decided to go ahead and brew a style that is not my favorite. I want to see if it's just other folks versions I don't like, or if there's something inherent in it that doesn't fly with me. And, my old boss really likes this style so I'll bottle it up for him if I don't like it. What, you're asking, what is this style so reviled? Amber ale. Alt-style. Alaskan Amber for a commercial example.

But, the real question is, why the sudden resurgence of brewing, when I had kinda taken a break for awhile? Two reasons. One, I think I gotta stop buying bottled beer. I mean, mine tastes just as good most of the time. Mine's cheaper. And when it's on draft I can have smaller amounts and enjoy it just as much. Two, a colleague has told me he's entrusting his all-grain gear to my care.

This is an amazing development. All-grain brewing is a significant investment of both time and money - the gear can be expensive and the process is more labor intensive. To be able to learn the process without shelling out for my own gear is a terrific opportunity. And, supposedly, he's got the full set - a grain mill, an aquarium pump aerator, a plate chiller.... Not sure he's giving me that part, but what the heck is he going to do with it? Use it as a desk bauble? He even has a fermenting fridge - and I sold mine when I left Tucson because I didn't think
I had room for it. Well, I do need something for the summer temps. And I cleaned the garage up aaaaalllll niiiiiiiceeeee.... We'll see if I'll be allowed to keep the fridge too.


In the glass: the dreaded Alaskan Amber. Gotta learn the style before I brew it.
In the fridge: Eel River Organic IPA
In the fermenter: My new Racer 5 clone.
In the kegerator: Nada. Yep, I suck.

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