29 June 2005

The BeerNeck!


Here's another neat idea! (Why can't I come up with these things?) Called the beer neck, it is a insulated bottle holder with an opener/cap that you can wear around your neck. And it's only about $10!
The company, CoolerGadgets.com, also sells "cannecks," and other beverage holders for those of us with active lifestyles.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 15:09 0 comments links to this post

27 June 2005

This is SWEET!

Ever go to a BYOB concert? Then you need this:
I have a couple of "beer quivers" that were premiums from Camel cigarettes in the 90s. It'll hold 6 regular beers and 5 "Silver Bullets." I went to a free concert in Austin with two of these, and I looked like Robin Hood. I'll post pictures later.
Here's a fashion tip: Buy four of these. Attach two together so that you get twelve beers on each belt. Sling one over one shoulder and the opposite hip, and then wear the other one in the opposite direction, and you can wear a case of beer!

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posted by Jeff Holt at 20:43 1 comments links to this post

26 June 2005

Austin Homebrew Supply Hefe Weiss (Batch #3)

I really don't intend to post to this blog every day, but ever since I created it, I've been thinking about beer. Imagine that. Anyway, today, my brewing partner and I are brewing the beer he wanted to brew, hefeweiss. He's a fan of Shiner Hefeweiss, but not necessarily of German hefeweiss. 'Kay! here are the ingredients:
  • 2.5 lb German pilsner malt
  • .5 lb CaraPils
  • 2.5 lb red wheat
  • 10 lb wheat malt extract
  • 1 lb honey (This was a last minute addition on our part based on Shiner's label)
  • 1.5 oz Hallertauer 60 mins
  • .5 oz Hallertauer 15 mins
  • German Wheat Yeast
We steeped the grains in 5 gallons at 155F for 45 minutes. Then we added the malt extract and brought it to a boil. Since we only had two 5 gallon fermenters, we filled those with 3 gallons of water. At the end of the boil we split the wort between the two ferments and pitched yeast. Fermenter A: SG1050 @ 90.5F = 1054 Fermenter B: SG1050 @ 88.7F = 1054 The fermenters will be stored in closets at about 76F until next week, when we will rack to secondary.

transferred to secondary on 7/4. Gravity on both fermenters is 1012. ABV = 4.32. ABW = 5.50.

Kegged on 7/15. Gravity was 1012. It was clear and tasted real good!


posted by Jeff Holt at 14:33 1 comments links to this post

25 June 2005

Kentucky Common Beer

Kentucky Common, or Kentucky Sour Mash Beer, as its name implies, came out of Kentucky, and is one of only two American beer styles.

To make whiskey, the distillers mash grains with with hops and allow it to ferment. The distillers then distill the beer into whiskey. I suspect that Sour Mash Beer was made from this mash.

Fred Eckhard, in The Essentials of Beer Style, described the style as being very dark, almost a dark as Guinness stout. It had an original gravity of 1040-1050, and an average bitterness of 27 IBUs and brewed with 2% lactobacillum in the yeast. He also listed a Pennsyvania Swankey, which I assume is a variation of Kentucky common, that was brewed with anise seed boiled for 30 minutes.

To create this recipe, I started with a BYO recipe for a golden age pilsner. Since most whiskeys are made with corn and rye, I thought their presence in the BYO recipe made sense if I were to recreate a Kentucky Common Beer.

Here's my Prototype recipe (10 gallons):

Kentucky Common Beer

  • Flaked maize – 2 lb
    Flaked Rye – 1 lb
    CaraPils – 1 lb
    chocolate malt – 4 oz
    Dark DME – 9 lb
    Tettnager 4.5% AA/60 minutes
    Hallertauer 4% AA/30 minutes
    Belgian Ale yeast

Steep the carapils, chocolate malt, flaked rye, and flaked maize in 5 gal. heated to 150° F for 30 min. Remove the grains, bring to a boil, and add the DME. After boiling for 60 minutes, cool and pitch yeast.

OG: 1051 IBU: 26.9 SRM: 27.2

Any thoughts?

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posted by Jeff Holt at 12:18 2 comments links to this post

24 June 2005

Recipe: Hookarm's Dark Ale

This is my original 5 gallon recipe:

  • 5 lb dark DME
  • 60L Crystal Malt 1/3 pound
  • Choclate Malt 2.5 oz
  • Perle Hops 6% AA 3/4 oz 60 minutes
  • Mt. Hood Hops 6% AA 3/4 oz 30 minutes
  • Tettnanger Hops 5% AA 2/3 oz 10 minutes
  • lager yeast

Steep grains in 1 gallon of water at 150F for 30 minutes. Strain. (Optional:You can bring a quart of water to 170F while the grains are steeping. After straining, slowly pour the water over the grains to sparge.) Add DME and bring to a boil. Add the hops as described above. At the end of the boil, cool to 80 degrees and pitch yeast. Ferment for one week. Bottle with 3/4 cup corn sugar.

OG: 1050 IBU: 25

Once I brewed this a couple of times, I changed yeast. I used a Belgian yeast, with lactobacillus in it, to sour the beer. What I had done was recreated a Kentucky Common, or Sour Mash beer. I really like this one.

BTW, Hookarm is the name of a fictional mass murderer around Fredericksburg. When I was in High School, Jamie Smallwood wrote a piece about how an abandonded house came to be that way. Hookarm was born in the school paper. Six years later, some current FHS students told me all about Hookarm, and swore he was real. They never beleived me when I told them it was all made up.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 12:21 0 comments links to this post

22 June 2005

Beer Run

My brewing partner and I, having decided to start brewing 10 gallon batches, and to start kegging our beer, decided we needed more kegs. Well, I have five, and he has none, so he needed some.

My favorite source for used kegs in St. Patrick's of Austin. They have used soda kegs at half the price of new ones. I have always thought the staff at St. Pat's was knowledgeable and I have always been impressed with their service.

Anyway, we bought some kegs and as we were loading up, I had an idea to go to Austin Homebrew Supply to buy ingredients. Why we didn't ask the folks at St. Pat's where they were, I don't know. We found their address in a phone book, but it was an old adress. So we called and got directions.

We bought ingredients for two 10 gallon batches of beer to be brewed in the next month. We bought the store's Hefeweiss kit, and, since we forgot to bring the ingredient list I had written up, I had to recreate the second recipe from memory. The second recipe is my recipe, from when I used to brew, called Hookarm's Dark Ale. I managed to gather come ingredients together, and when I got home, the only thing I got wrong was the hop type.

We're brewing the hefeweiss on Sunday.


posted by Jeff Holt at 15:31 0 comments links to this post

20 June 2005

The Beer Ring

Now here's a product everyone needs! The Ring Thing! At this moment, I have a bottle opener on my key ring. Now I can get rid of that and wear my opener! Brilliant!

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posted by Jeff Holt at 21:23 0 comments links to this post

18 June 2005

Williams Brewing's American Pre-Pro Ale

Brew date: 6/12

My brewing partner and I started this batch at 9 am. We put about 3 gallons of water into the kettle and brought it to a boil. We added the first hops at 09:30, after we had added the malt extract syrup. We added the second hops at 10:20, and ended the boil at 10:30.

OG @ 86F = 1054. Adjusted OG = 1057.

We put the wort into a sanitized plastic fermenter, and stored it in a closet in the house where the ambient temperature was 75F.

Transferred to secondary fermentation on 6/18. SG@75.4F=1012. Adjusted SG=1014.

Kegged on 7/4. FG = 1012. Alchol by Weight = 4.63. Alcohol by Volume = 5.90.


posted by Jeff Holt at 10:11 0 comments links to this post