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Nacho's (mis)adventures in brewing

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nacho:
I'll start a new thread for my trip reports and all that...leave the Homebrewing thread for generic news and discussion. This way, I can fag the thread up with pictures of me covered in mold and yeast and going blind.

Looks like this month will be more about all the equipment slowly making it's way to my front door.

So far, a five gallon brewpot and the maestro beer kit featuring overpriced food buckets you could have gotten on ebay for a dollar has come to a total of $100.

There are some more odds and ends, suggested by Palmer's How to Brew guide,  which shouldn't cost more than $20. Plus I'm going to go ahead and buy the ingredients for the sample recipe in Palmer's book (probably another $20).

By the way... How to Brew is going to be my bible through this:

How to Brew: Everything You Need To Know To Brew Beer Right The First Time

It's an incredibly well put together guidebook.  An older version (1999) is free online: http://www.howtobrew.com/intro.html

The print version (2006) has been updated to reflect the resurgence of homebrewing, and the easier availability of equipment and ingredients.

My first problem has been finding a place in my apartment for the fermentor. We have communist heating so, during the winter, my apartment is a steady 85 degrees.  Over the last couple days, I've been staking out closets. The only ones that are below 75 are in my bedroom and in the hallway. My bedroom is easier to control as it has windows and a window unit air conditioner, so that'll be the spot for bubbling buckets of goo.

The first beer will be whatever generic shit comes with the kit.  Generic Ale! I mainly intend it to be a (not quite so) dry run, of sorts. Just go through all the steps and get the hang of things.  Since I expect to fuck it up, and since ingredients included with a beer kit are always sub-par, I expect most of Generic Ale to go down the drain.

Sadly, it'll tie up my fermentor for a couple weeks... But I'm going to be ready on bottling day with the first real beer run -- the "Cincinnati Pale Ale" that is the example recipe Palmer used in How to Brew.

Overall, it'll be March before I have anything palatable. UPS says most of the major equipment I need for Generic Ale will be here by the weekend, so I'll plan on the Generic Ale brew day on the 14th (though activity will start on Tuesday the 11th). It'll be in the fermenting bucket till the 28th, then bottled.  Cincinnati Pale Ale brew day will be on the 30th.

Generic Ale should be ready for pouring down the drain (or drinking, if I'm lucky) on February 11th, and the Cincinnati on the 27th of February.

If I get the hang of this (and enjoy it), then my plan is to get a second fermenting bucket and airlock (which should only run me about 20 bucks) and have two batches going at once. That way I can keep the lagers and ales flowing and also mess around with more complicated and/or experimental stuff.

Long term questions: What am I going to do with all this beer?

nacho:
Okay.... Ordered the ingredients for five gallons of "Cincinnati Pale Ale." Total cost: $40 (including shipping).

So that's about 75 cents per bottle of beer. It'll be less if I start driving up to get my ingredients in Columbia.

And I could just ferment my urine and make Tecate for zero dollars a bottle!

I like this hobby already!

nacho:
Equipment arrived! It didn't come with ingredients, so...we'll start with the Cincinnati. It's actually a very posh kit... I don't need any extra equipment.

So, waiting on ingredients... Hopefully they'll be here before Tuesday so I can start on the yeast. Which also means one night next week will be set aside for freakout cleaning and sterilization.  Then brew day next Friday!

RottingCorpse:
So when I read about an apartment complex in your neighborhood blowing up, I should just go about my business? Is that what you're saying?

nacho:
Well, that's always been true.

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