Thursday, March 8, 2007

Brew News - 101

For those wondering what we’ve been up to, for those new to the site and those still trying to find boobies, I thought I would provide a quick overview of the production machine that has become The Beer Blokes’ Brewery.

After a period of finding our feet and establishing some good cleaning and sanitising habits, as well as finding places to safely store all the finished bottle conditioned stock, the beer machine clicked into all wheel 4x4, turbo charged full steam ahead mode. Boobies.

I realised, as I was brewing one day, that I could re-use at least some of the sanitising water from the bottle wash bin to clean and sanitise the fermenter after a batch. Not wanting to then waste a nice clean fermenter, I decided it would be more economical to brew another batch up. Not wanting to waste this water, I figured I could sanitise some more bottles for the next batch. I then realised I could re-use this water to clean the fermenter. Not wanting to waste a clean fermenter I . . .

This caused an unexpected problem. One man, alone, without any help, on his own, can not hope to keep up a constant supply of empties for such a vast brewing empire operating at such a rate. Well, he can, but it is not easy. Or cheap. Nor can he operate heavy machinery or conduct delicate surgery or engineer a box girder bridge whilst maintaining such a steady supply of empties.

Fortunately a nice spell of very hot and dry and drink inducing weather had gripped our fair town while we were beginning our brew journey and I had plenty saved. But, when the brewbug bites, it bites hard and the train was not to be stopped. A second lager was followed by a second Golden Harvest Lager from the Cascade range which led straight into a first up Pilsner and an Australia Day lager, , then a NZ can kit, a Black Rock Pilsner Blonde, a Draught at 6.66% alc/vol -” That’s a strong beer, chop.” and, most recently a Golden Lager. Bosoms.

The last four brews have seen the Blokes move into the “Cook&Create” phase of the program. We choose a basic can kit and then select hops to add aroma, flavour - or both - as well as bittering hops and malt extracts and/or different types of sugars to round out the body, add to the mouthfeel and keep a good head on the finished beer. The ingredients chosen, we then brew them up in the pot and strain the home made wort into the fermenter along with a selected yeast, rather than the one supplied with the tin. Tits.

We are now becoming as one with our Saaz, Hersbruckers, Tettnangs, Hallertaus and Pride Of Ringwood hops and, while they are fermenting, I am tasting the raw beer I draw off for the hydrometer readings and am really beginning to get a feel for how the finished beer will present. We have about 650 stubbies worth of finished beer which we hope to leave to mature for a couple of months. Having kept some of the first two brews for nearly three months now, and having tasted them at regular intervals, I can attest to the improvement this time allows.

P.S. You may have noticed that I have decided to throw in, at random, as many sly references to boobies as I can. Mrs Pilsner was commenting on feedback from a friend in Thailand who has caught up with the site and mentioned that there was a Google ad at the bottom for a possibly dodgy and non-beer bloke-like product or service. She thought the ads may be demographic and key word generated. This got me thinking. What could I do to increase the likelihood of Beer Blokes coming up in searches so that more folk could be exposed to the site. Beer? Exposed? BOOBIES !! Simple.

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