When it comes to technique, sour beers are no different. Traditionally, sour beers utilize a long, arduous aging period to allow various bacterial and/or yeast cultures to slowly turn the fermented beer into a wonderfully complex and tart delight. In practice, however, many brewers just do not have the patience to wait up to 24 months for the souring to occur. For these brewers (myself included), there exists a work-around to emulate a traditionally soured beer: Enter the kettle souring method.
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Entries by Brewmasters
“There’s no such thing as too many hops!” We all know some hop-head who lives by these words. But, truth be told, as much as we love those super-hoppy, over-the-top delicious double IPAs, there’s always the risk of going too far. If you’ve ever crossed that line, you know what I’m talking about.
Advanced beer brewers routinely make yeast ‘starters’, growing a culture of yeast up from a few hundred million live cells into a powerful, seething mass of hundreds of billions of cells, ready to launch a vigorous, thorough fermentation in their brews.
Regardless of your upbringing, come March 17th everyone is Irish for a day! St. Patrick’s day celebrates Irish culture and heritage with food, festivities, and, most importantly, beer.
Get ready for it, this coming Sunday night is Super Bowl LI! Whether your team made it or not, millions will be watching the game. What this really means is lots of beer and even more food! Nachos, wings, and pizza will adorn coffee tables all across America, as well as the obligatory light lagers.
Like many of you, part of why I brew beer is to experiment and create new recipes. Sure, we all have our favorites, but even then, changing up a few of the ingredients can yield surprising results.
We often hear the word funk tossed around when people talk about Brettanomyces (Brett) and/or sour beers, but what does it mean? Some people interpret it as a barnyard, leather or horse blanket character. To others, it’s fruity aromas and flavors that are reminiscent of citrus or stone fruits that are a couple of days past ripe.
The weather is changing, the days are shortening, and one of my favorite beers is finding its way onto the shelves. I don’t just mean the rich caramel flavor of this Märzen style lager, but the 206 year-old celebration itself, Oktoberfest!
If you’re like me, you get tingles when you think about hop harvest season. Like a helicopter parent, you’ve coddled your backyard hop bines since they were babies, tending to them religiously and watching proudly as they’ve grown over the summer to be 16, 18, perhaps more than 20 feet tall! And now you’re staring at their beautiful cones, just waiting to be lovingly bombed into that IPA recipe you’ve been itching to brew. The time is now! you think to yourself.
Whether you’re steeping grains for an extract brew or mashing in an all-grain system there are usually a lot of grains involved. Grains add color, body and flavor to every brew but their usefulness doesn’t need to end there. Even after the wort is made, the spent grains have leftover fiber, protein, minerals, vitamins and essential amino acids waiting to be used anywhere but the landfill. Beer and food tend to go hand in hand and that is why I recommend incorporating spent grains from your kettle into your kitchen recipes.