Monday, December 31, 2012

Batch 132, Prickly Pear Beer

Another batch of the Prickly Pear Beer recipe that I made in April 2011. It wasn't a very good beer at first, but the keg that sat in the back of the fridge for a year came out delicious.

10 gallon batch.

15 lbs 2-row
1 lbs wheat
8 lbs prickly pears
2 oz Delta hops, 60 minutes
Wyeast 1272 from batch 131

Mash at 152F.

Like last time, it's a guess on the weight of the pears. I looked at the pictures, found the same bucket, and filled it to the same level.

This turned out to be a pain in the ass day. It took forever for the wort to boil, then I finally realized I barely had the gas on. Doh! Then the false bottom in the boil kettle must have floated, because pear seeds got picked up and clogged the pump. Had to do a complete disassembly to get the pump to work again. While working on the pump, I drained the kettle by gravity into a bucket with a strainer, then poured the wort back into my now empty mash tun. Pump ran fine after that.

The new wort chiller worked like a charm. I'm still figuring out how to work my system with all the upgrades I did recently. The pick up tubes on the BK and HLT don't seal well, so they suck air rather than completely draining the kettle. The mash tun seems to work fine, maybe because the grain helps clog any gaps.

I pumped the wort directly on to the yeast cake from batch 131.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Batch 131, Pail Ail

Pail Ail

A basic pale ale recipe, featuring Magnum and Saaz.

Recipe Pail Ail Style American Pale Ale
Brewer Batch 10.00 gal
All Grain

Recipe Characteristics
Recipe Gravity 1.045 OG Estimated FG 1.011 FG
Recipe Bitterness 42 IBU Alcohol by Volume 4.4%
Recipe Color 13° SRM Alcohol by Weight 3.5%

Quantity Grain Type Use
10.00 lb American Munich Grain Mashed
10.00 lb American two-row Grain Mashed

Hop Type Time
1.50 oz Magnum Whole 60 minutes
2.00 oz Saaz Whole 10 minutes

Misc Notes
1.00 unit American Ale yeast Yeast 1272

Mashed at 148F.

Update 12/31, racked to kegs.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Equipment Upgrade

It all started because I stacked things up precariously when cleaning up, and my pump took a fall and broke.

This isn't something that is fixable, so I bought a new pump head. I'd read on my home brew club form about Chugger pump heads, they are stainless steel and are designed to fit on to March pumps, so I bought this one:

Since it's all stainless steel, I needed to get some stainless fittings for it. I went whole hog.

This sure looks nice all assembled.


Then I thought I'd go ahead and get some tri-clover fittings and some high-temp hose:

Since I needed tri-clover connectors on the other end, I got those, plus bought three complete sets of stainless valves, pipes, and false-bottoms.