Monday, June 9, 2008

New Kegerator

So I just scored a new (to me) Sanyo 4912 fridge that will be turned into my new dual tap kegerator. My wife allowed me to go to Best Buy to get the fridge this past weekend. It was good timing. The last model in the building was a floor model, which had a couple very small dings in the bottom of the door, but is otherwise in great condition. I was able to get it for $129.00 (regularly $209.00) with a 3 year warranty. Needless to say, I think this is a pretty good deal.

I have my new stainless dual-tap tower and an extra Perlick faucet on order from Beverage Factory. I can wait for them to arrive! In the meantime, I'll be prepping the fridge to mount the tower, run a CO2 line, and all the other good stuff that's needed to get beer flowing ASAP.

My old ghetto kegerator will now be used as a fermentation chamber, just in time for the summer (and damn its hot as hell around here already). As usual, I hope to add some pics once we get a new camera.

UPDATE 6/17/08:
So my new kegerator is finished and pouring two kegs nicely (DunkelWeizen and a Rye IPA). I did, however, manage to break one of the pressure gauges on my new dual regulator (MicroMatic). So a new one is on the way. I must say the regulator is definitely worth the money. I couldn't be happier with the finished product. Cheers!

UPDATE 8/4/08:
I am now able to add some pics. Enjoy!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Cheers to Dad! What beer did your father drink?

I am not a father yet, but I do have a Dad and I will be giving a big "Cheers" to him on Father's Day. My dad doesn't drink great beer. I at least have him drinking Sam Adams and Yuengling, which is a big step up from the Coors Light standard.

Speaking of the Silver Bullet, dad's was the first sip of beer I ever had at about the age of 4. We were outside grilling out one summer and I just reached up and took a swig. I'll never forget it. It was one of the most god-awful things I ever put in my mouth, and still is ;).

Long-story-short, I swore I would never drink beer in my life. That all changed on my 21st birthday (believe or not, true story), when I had a Becks Dark. Which then turned into a Michelob Dark, and then declined into pitchers of Busch Light (you can imagine it was a big night for all my friends and roommates to see me drinking beer). And thus my journey into beer began.

But back to good ol' Dad. I at least have him drinking Sam Adams and Yuengling now. I can even get him to try some of my homebrews now and again. But I have him to thank for starting me on my road to finding better the age of 4. Because even then I knew there must be something better than Coor's Light out there.

Cheers to you Dad! And happy Father's Day!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Rain, Thunder, Lightning, Hail, and Beer...Oh My!

I had a friend of mine over last night to join me in a brew session. We had a Belgian Strong Golden Ale all ready to go and the session went pretty well. Well, except for the weather. This was the worst storm I've ever been through in Greensboro. There were high winds, torrential rain, lightning, thunder, and hail. It last for about an hour. And because the drainage is so poor in my back yard and patio, we ended up with about 6 inches of standing water. At least the brew session could continue on the screen porch while I went into manual labor mode.

The water was rising over the foundation vents (which is very bad by the way), so I had to get out the shovel to start tearing out some old landscaping to allow the water to drain properly down the storm grate. The previous owners somehow thought it was a good idea to block the drains with railroad ties. So I got to tear out bricks, logs, and grade the mud back down towards the drain so my house didn't float away.

And back to the brew session. After I cleaned up a bit, we continued after an extended mash. Everything else went off without a hitch. I had intended naming this beer Golden Boy, but I need to come up with something better to remember this storm by. Below is the recipe...

Recipe Specifications--------------------------
Batch Size: 5.50 gal
Boil Size: 7.50 gal
Estimated OG: 1.075 SG
Estimated Color: 6.0 SRM
Estimated IBU: 30.0 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 75.00 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

12 lbs Pilsner (2 Row) Bel
1 lbs Vienna Malt
8.0 oz Aromatic Malt
1 lbs Sugar, Table (Sucrose) (30 min)
1.00 oz Amarillo Gold [8.50 %] (60 min)
1.00 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (10 min)
1.00 oz Cascade [5.50 %] (15 min Aroma Hop-Steep)
1.00 items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 min)
1 Pkgs Belgian Golden Ale (White Labs #WLP570)

Mash Schedule---------------------------------
Total Grain Weight: 13.50 lb
Saccharification: Rest 60 min at 150.0 F
Vorlauf: 1-2 gallons as needed for clarity
Fly Sparge: 45 min at 180.0 F