30 November 2006

St. Arnold's Christmas Ale

Over the Thanksgiving weekend, I tried St. Arnold's Christmas Ale. I found this to be another great St. Arnold's product. Again, there was a nice mouthfeel, with a nice malty flavor. There was a clean hop finish, with a hint of spice. This could be my favorite holiday beer.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 13:48 0 comments links to this post

28 November 2006

The Perfect Woman?


posted by Jeff Holt at 16:32 0 comments links to this post

26 November 2006

2 Below from new Belgium Brewing Company

I drank a six pack of Two Below Seasonal ale from New Belgium Brewing Company. I thought it was a very good beer, with a thick malt body, a hint of alcohol and moderate hoppiness. Definitely not a slamming beer, but a very nice sipping beer.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 13:36 4 comments links to this post

24 November 2006

Kegging day

I kegged the Chocolate Coconut Stout today. I had hoped to take it to the office Christmas party, but I don't think it will be ready. So I'm going to let it age for three weeks before it try it.

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posted by Jeff Holt at 15:52 0 comments links to this post

20 November 2006

Choclate Coconut Stout

Intrigued by a comment on the BrewCasters, I decided to brew a chocolate coconut stout. I ordered a double chocolate stout kit from Austin Homebrew Supply and brewed it yesterday. At kegging, I will add 1 tsp of coconut extract. It sounds like German Chocolate beer!

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posted by Jeff Holt at 06:38 2 comments links to this post

18 November 2006

Charlie's Holiday Cheer - Kegged

This morning, I kegged Charlie's Holiday Cheer. This is going to be a darn tasty beer, folks! It is amber colored, with a hint of ruby. The ginger aroma has mellowed, and blends well with the cinnamon. A taste test revealed that the Saaz hop finish had evened out and actually enhanced the ginger. The final gravity was 1.011, which makes the %alcohol by volume 5.37.

I have to admit, that I haven't been this excited by a beer I brewed in a while. I wonder why I ever stopped brewing it?


posted by Jeff Holt at 11:49 0 comments links to this post

16 November 2006

Another Christmas Gift idea for the beer lover in your life!

In a perfect world, beer lines would run through the walls of my house, and there would be taps on at least one wall in every room. Somehow, I don't thank that is going to happen. In the meantime, I can put one of these mini fridges in my office and enjoy a cold beer at any time. I could set the thermostat to 130 degrees if I wanted, but that would ruin the beer.


posted by Jeff Holt at 09:01 0 comments links to this post

14 November 2006

Just in time for Chirtsmas!

Don't you just hate it when your beer gets warm while you're researching beer recipes online? Me too. That's why I want one of these USB Beverage Coolers. Now, my beer will stay frosty while I try to find the perfect stout recipe.


posted by Jeff Holt at 08:58 1 comments links to this post

12 November 2006

The Brewing Network Sundays at 5 pm PT

In Brew Your Own Magazine's August issue they had a story about brewing webcasts. They listed five or six podcasts worth listening to. I started listening to The Brewing Network's The Brewcasters show, and truly enjoy it. Those of you whose delicate ears are offended by profanity with have them completely fried to a crisp by this show. Along with the profanity are the veiled sexual innuendo, questioning of the brewcasters' sexual orientation, and penis size. In otherwords, it's like listening in on a group of guys (and a gal, Daniella) sitting around drinking beer and talking about homebrewing. I love it!

The only downside is that the webcasts are 2-3 hours long. I only have a five minute commute to work. It takes a while to get through a show, but I enjoy every minute of it.

Check them out.


posted by Jeff Holt at 07:46 0 comments links to this post

10 November 2006

CNN's 6 Best Fall Beers

CNN recently released their list of the 6 best Fall Beers.

  1. Fuller's: Vintage Ale
  2. Anchor Brewing: Our Special Ale
  3. Sierra Nevada: Celebration
  4. Affligem Brewery: Affligem Noel
  5. Brooklyn Brewery: Brooklyn Black Chocolate Stout
  6. Great Divide Brewing Company: Hibernation Ale
Unfortunately, where I live, I can only get Sierra Nevada.

posted by Jeff Holt at 08:39 2 comments links to this post

08 November 2006

Charlie's Holiday Cheer - Into Secondary!

I transferred Charlie's Holiday Cheer into a carboy for secondary fermentation. But because I am an idiot (!!), I didn't get enough of a sample to take a hydrometer reading. So I drank it.

The beer is brown in color, and smells predominantly of ginger with a hint of cinnamon. The beer tastes smooth, and picks up more of the cinnamon flavor than the ginger flavor. There is a nice Saaz hop finish, too. It maybe a bit too strong. The original recipe called for only 1/2 ounce of hops, but I didn't want to waste the other 1/2 ounce. . .

All in all? I can hardly wait until Christmas.


posted by Jeff Holt at 08:37 0 comments links to this post

06 November 2006

A-B's Chocolate Beer - The beginning of a New Trend

On STLtoday.com, there was a story about Anheuser-Busch's new chocolate beer: Michelob Celebrate Chocolate. A-B suggests that the beer be served at room temperature and be sipped, not slammed, and should go good with pecan pie, Kristi Zantop, brewmaster, said. Brewed with caramel and roasted malts and matured on cocoa beans, the chocolate beer looks like liquid dark chocolate with a creamy latte-colored foam. It doesn't taste like conventional beer, nor is it syrupy sweet like a liqueur, the article says, and is 8.5 percent alcohol by volume.

You may recall that I wrote about Frederick Miller Chocolate lager last month. A-B's offering, including their other seasonal brews, is a new wrinkle in the American beer industry. After witnessing the successes of vodka manufacturers offering several flavored vodkas, the Big Boys are offering more styles of beer than ever before in an effort to boost sales. And as they offer more seasonal beers, consumers begin anticipating them.


posted by Jeff Holt at 08:19 0 comments links to this post

04 November 2006

Charlie's Holiday Cheer

I brewed this on Sunday, 10/29. Everything went great. The original gravity wound up at 1052. I will transfer the beer to secondary in the next couple of days.


posted by Jeff Holt at 09:45 0 comments links to this post

02 November 2006

Brew Day!

Finally, I can brew again. The temperatures have fallen so that fermentation in the corner is possible. I am brewing Charlie Papazian's Holiday Cheer:

  • 7 lbs. light malt extract
  • 1 lb honey
  • 1/2 lb Crystal 60L
  • 2 oz black patent
  • 2 oz Cascade Hops (60 minutes)
  • 1 oz Saaz Hops (2 minutes)
  • flaked ginger
  • 6-inches stick cinnaon
  • zest from 4 oranges
  • California Ale yeast

Put the specialty grains in 1 1/2 gallon of cold water and bring to a boil. When the boil begins, remove the grains. Add the extract, honey, and the Cascade hops. Boil 45 minutes. Add the Ginger, cinnamon and orange zest. Add the saaz hops in the last 2 minutes of the boil.

When the beer has cooled, pitch the yeast.

OG: 1054-1060
FG: 1018-1026
3.7% ABW
4.7% ABV

I will post my brewing notes later.

Please note that this recipe is from Charlie Papazian's Complete Joy of Home Brewing.


posted by Jeff Holt at 08:36 0 comments links to this post