Monday, May 11, 2009

Brew 14: Disaster Porter 2

The original Disaster Porter is of my favorites so far, and a favorite of my friend Greg's. He wanted to get in on another batch and came over with Ed to watch and help out.

I realized something with this brew. Watching someone else brew is like watching someone else cook. If you really want to do it yourself someday it is cool to learn, otherwise it isn't that much fun. They were good sports though, and we brewed up 10 gallons of delicious porter that is now in secondary and will be bottled for them and put on tap for me in about 2 weeks.

This was the first brew with my 10 gallon rubbermaid cooler, and the difference is amazing. I did a step mash as you can see below, and for the first time I nailed the temps and they held. The process went much faster even though I did 10 gallons instead of 5. The cooler could have held another 2 lbs of grain, but no more.

1:20 PM 5/2/2009 dough in at 154
1:32 PM 5/2/2009 Temp @ 140
2:00 PM 5/2/2009 Recirc 2 gals (draw off, boil, add again) + add hot water to 155
2:30 PM 5/2/2009 Recirc 2 gals to 165
2:44 PM 5/2/2009 Started Sparge
3:35 PM 5/2/2009 Started Boil of 12.5 gallons
3:45 PM 5/2/2009 Added 60 min hops
4:15 PM 5/2/2009 Added 30 min hops
4:40 PM 5/2/2009 Added 7 min hops + Wort chiller coil + Irish Moss
4:45 PM 5/2/2009 Added 0 min hops, started chill

Brew 13 - American Lager

My father-in-law only likes lagers like Kirin, Bud, and Sapporo. Last time he was here a year ago my brewing skills were not what they are now, and he didn't enjoy my homebrew very much, although he was polite and drank it.

For a while it looked like he would be coming back this year to visit so I decided to try to brew a Kirin clone.

My only other attempt at a Lager resulted in a bitterness that the owner of the local homebrew shop attributed to tannins from the malt husks. I can't for the life of me figure out how you are supposed to do a decoction mash without getting those tannins, but didn't want to repeat the experience and did a more basic step mash.

I didn't exactly want a Kirin beer, I like it well enough, but I prefer a Helles or all-malt lager like a Grolsch, so I reduced the 1.5 lbs of rice called for in the recipe to 1 lb and added some bitterness.

Well, the beer is now almost 2 months old and it is a bit sweeter than i like but not too bad. It turns out that my father-in-law won't be coming for a visit, but that is ok, at least I will enjoy it, and as the heat builds it is a good time to have a lighter beer on tap.

Final gravity is high at 1.014 instead of a targetted 1.010.

The process follows; it is the last brew I will do with my keg mash tun, I converted to a 10 gallon cooler and I like it a lot more.

Mash Strategy

Dough in at 150, observe drop to 130 wait 20 min.
Add soupy Rice
mash 135 to 145 for 45 min
Decoction to 150 to 155 for 20 min
Decoction to 160 wait 10-20 min
Start Sparge

12:56 PM 3/28/2009 water @ 150, ph = >6.2
12:59 PM 3/28/2009 Added 8 lbs of grist, mash at 142,
1:02 PM 3/28/2009 added 2 qts cold water, mash at 135
1:17 PM 3/28/2009 1 lb of Rice added, mash at 130
1:21 PM 3/28/2009 Sparge water is distilled, ph < 4.6
1:34 PM 3/28/2009 1 gal Decoction @160 added mash raised to 135
1:40 PM 3/28/2009 1 gal Decoction @170 added mash raised to 140
1:52 PM 3/28/2009 1.25 gal Decoction @180 added mash raised to 145
2:07 PM 3/28/2009 Mash ph = 5.4
2:07 PM 3/28/2009 Temp check: 140
2:25 PM 3/28/2009 1.25 gal Decoction @212 added mash raised to 150
2:32 PM 3/28/2009 1 gal decoction @212 added mash raised to 155
2:53 PM 3/28/2009 1 gal decoction @212 added mash raised to 158
2:50 PM 3/28/2009 started heading sparge water
3:03 PM 3/28/2009 Started Sparge
3:16 PM 3/28/2009 2.5 gal
3:33 PM 3/28/2009 7.75 gal, started boil

3:56 PM 3/28/2009 60 min hops added
4:46 PM 3/28/2009 10 min hops added w Irish moss

4:50 PM 3/28/2009 wort chiller inserted
4:56 PM 3/28/2009 Flamout, hops added
5:08 PM 3/28/2009 Wort chilled to 75