30 October 2005

Bottling Hookarm's Xmas Ale

A bottle of Hookarm's Xmas Ale

I just got back from the Honey Creek Brewery, or the garage at my brewing partner's house. We bottled the Holiday beer. It was dark brown, almost mahogany colored, and had an aroma of bananas. That's probably a result of the ale yeast and fermenting at 70°. It tasted mild, though there was a bit of coffee flavor, a result of the black patent malt. The original recipe called for chocolate malt, but I didn't have the recipe with me when I was at Austin Homebrew Supply, so I punted.

The cardamom added a nice flavor, but it was in the background. The vanilla flavor I had hoped for wasn't there. Does anyone have any idea how to get a vanilla flavor in the finish?

We bottled about five gallons, and kegged the other half. I believe Xmas beer should come from a bottle. The final gravity was 1009. That makes the alcohol content 3.7% by weight, and 4/7% by volume.

One hitch in our getalong, however. When we got ready to bottle, we discovered we had no corn sugar. Crap!

Okay, don't panic. We consulted the texts. We used 1 teaspoon of corn syrup dissolved in a cup of water to prime the beer.

So here's the question, has anyone used table sugar to prime, and at what amount? And how much corn syrup should we have used to adequately prime the beer? Any thoughts?

posted by hiikeeba at 19:14


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've used table sugar. It works just fine, and you actually use slightly less.

I think Rooftop Brew (google it) has a calculator on their site. You enter the style, volume of brew, etc, and it gives you an answer.

4:36 PM  

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