#1 First ever brew: Pale Ale
I walked into the homebrew store as green as any other first time brewer they've gotten in there. I meandered for a while and debated how I wanted to start the homebrew process and how much I wanted to invest in my new hobby. I decided on a 5 gallon carboy, a stopper, an air lock, a hydrometer, cleaner and Cooper's Australian Pale Ale Hopped Extract Kit. Thus so is how my brewing journey began.
I did have to swallow a lot of pride to go conservative with my investment. My man hood told me I could brew an award winner if I just spent the money. Truth be told if my friend Will, a jolly, beer loving fellow enthusiast was not planning on going all out I would have gone a bit more crazy. He was jumping in head first and I was helping by pushing off the ledge. He however was not starting till after Thanksgiving and seeing how that was a full 3 weeks away I would not have my heart wait any longer than it had to. I told him I'd do a basic, fools proof trial run before he ventured into the boil process. So trail run I did.
It was as simple as could be. I boiled a gallon of water, then added the extract mix that was pre-hopped, let that boil for another five minutes. Ice bathed the pot and when around 100 degrees I added it to the carboy that had 4 gallons of spring water in it already. The temp was about 80 degrees. After I aerated the wort with shaking of the carboy, I pitched the dry yeast that came with the kit. The air lock in place and then I waited. I was so enthralled to see the activity and the bubbles, or as I know now Attenuation. As those of you who have brewed before know, a 5 gallon carboy with nearly 5 gallons of fermenting beer in it is going to be... a bit messy. It was and I learned a valuable lesson that I didn't properly learn from. I'm hinting at a humorous story for a later time.
The beer was finished fermenting 3 weeks later. I bottled them employing the tsp to 3/4 tsp of priming sugar to each bottle technique. Give me a break it was my first time. I opened one 3 days later, for experimental purposes. Not enough time, cause it was flat. 5 days was better but at 7 days it was perfectly carbed. I shared it as much I could with my friends and it was well received, so all in all I didn't screw it up too bad. It was all gone in less time then it took to brew and bottle it. Which I think is how all my beers to date have been. Long wait with a short consumption.
The rest of my brew stories will just be recipes and anything interesting I discovered with that brew.
Posted by Andrew Mathis