In the past week I’ve spent a bit of time in the brewery. My brother got in town yesterday very early and he joined me there most of the day yesterday. We’ve gotten a lot done:
- Made starters for barley wine (WLP 099, High Gravity Ale Yeast) and mead (Red Star Pasteur Champagne). I’m going to try a small batch of mead with the ale yeast.
- Brewed maple porter: medium hops, hopefully medium body and nice maple nose and flavor.
- Brewed an amber barley wine, using Pacific Gem hops (16% aa).
- Bottled a very old but pretty good barley wine, using half-liter bottles.
- Bottled an excellent pale ale (WLP 001) which I’m sharing with John and Karen Curtis (part of a charity auction).
I’m a bit worried I put too much roasted barley in the porter—half a pound. Hopefully the five and a half pounds of Vermont Grade B syrup I bought last summer will come through. I had planned to put this wort on the yeast cake from the pale, but it looked a bit funky so I tossed it. Better safe than stupid.
The barley wine is 16 lbs of extract and 3 oz of the Pacific Gem hops (which are yellow in color, they have so much lupulin on them) in seven gallons of water. Boiled 90 minutes. Lost about a half-gallon to a clogged siphon, so after boil-off and the usual waste I ended up with around five gallons. Final gravity 1.094. That’s gonna be strong as hell.
Besides the maple porter and barley wine, right now I have hefe fermenting—and it will go to bottles in the next three or four days. I still need to make mead, and then think I’m going to do IPA and porter—stretching this WLP001 culture as far as I can. Though I might use WLP 005 for the IPA. We’ll see. For now, I have enough irons in the fire.