Small batch, the American way.

I made a trip over to my good ol’ buddy Brads place last Saturday. He had invited us out for some BBQ and to do a small batch of brewing. He had some ingredients he shared (thanks Brad), it was enough to do a 2 gallon batch that we split between us. It was pretty hot, but once the smell of hops and malts wafted through the air nothing else mattered.

He had the ingredients to make an American pale ale. Very standard, nothing tricky, but it will be wonderful session beer. He overshot the gravity (1.070) and added some water to hit his numbers (1.060 OG). I went ahead and left it, figured we could compare. Small batches are really fun, it seems a lot of work for for about a 10-12 bottles (12oz). But it allows a lot of experimentation, lower cost and lower risk. For instance, Brad plans on going with either a lime or strawberry addition. Myself, nothing I am too lazy, I will be bottling my last batch tonight or tomorrow (more on that below)

Golden Light Liquid Malt Extract 3.3 lbs 60 min
1/4 oz centennial 60 min
1/2 oz willamette 5 min
2.5 gallons of water
US-05 Yeast with a massive starter (Brad made a sweet stir plate)

Everything went well and nothing tragic happened. Brad grilled up some kabobs (pork / chicken), they were excellent.

My last batch (Scottish 80) has still not been bottled. The fermentation temps have been a steady 68 and the cake is fully settled. I don’t have much fear that its going to pick up off flavors but I need to get it done. Brad once again helped me out by giving me a bunch of bottles he has been saving up. And coupled with the ones I have saved I have around 40 now. The one thing I am doing is soaking them to remove the labels (which reminds me I need to get custom ones made up). I have them in a solution of dish soap and water. So many methods of doing it, but dish soap always works fairly well. I plan on bottling tonight or tomorrow.

A few more pictures of the day!



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