I'm back to my old shenanigans of not posting to the blog... To be honest, I didn't have much to post until January. After my cardamon wheat beer, I didn't brew until the end of December.
By the way, that wee 1/4 tsp of cardamon I put in the wheat beer was too much! It dominated the taste. If I were to do it again, I would take a single cardamon pod, break it up slightly and leave it at that. Lessons learned.
Anyway, I decided to brew a simple Porter after Christmas. I wanted a dark beer for the winter, and I wanted to keep it simple after the Cardamon Incident of 2008. Here's the recipe:
Porter?! (I barely knew her)
7.0# Munich Liquid Malt Extract (Amber Malt Extract)
0.5# Crisp Chocolate Malt
0.5# Roasted Barley
0.25# Special B
0.25# Belgian Aromatic Malt
0.75 oz Magnum (60 min)
0.75 oz East Kent Goldings (10 min)
White Labs Edinburgh Ale yeast
Steeped the grains ~ 155F for 45 min, boiled, etc.
Standard extract process...
Being Colorado in the Winter (and the fact that I'm a furnace stooge), this beer fermented at ~ 65F, and as a result, took it's sweet time. It was still bubbling after almost a month. But I had other motives for waiting so long. In February, I acquired Kegs!!!
Getting in on a big group buy in Denver (over 300 kegs ordered in total), I got 4 Corny Kegs shipped directly from the great white north. These kegs are retired Pepsi kegs, some of them with some Pepsi and Mug Root Beer leftover. Now that I have kegs, I don't have to bother with bottling (cleaning, sanitizing, filling and capping each bottle by hand). Instead of carbonating in the bottle using priming sugar, I just have to chill my keg (currently in my temp controlled chest freezer), and pressurize it with a CO2 tank.
For a few days, the CO2 slowly dissolves into the beer, carbonating it! And you know what? It's pretty damn good!
Damn good enough that I thought I'd enter it into a local beer competition. While is was local, it still had over 300 beer entries! I entered the Porter?! as a Robust Porter (category 12b). It did not place, but earned a respectable 33 points (mid Very Good), so I was very happy with it. One judge tasted some esters which he believed to be from a high-temp ferment. Since it was definitely not high temp, I'm guessing it was from the beer sitting on the lees for so long, and perhaps the yeast strain.
Anyways, I will post again soon (or will I????) with a new "brew".