I brewed up the American Pale Ale that I have been logging a journal about for the past week yesterday. On Friday night, I made some changes to the recipe, ironed out all my calculations, and got all my equipment out.
Some things went well, some things didn’t go well.
Before I started brewing, I dropped my hydrometer and it broke. I was really hoping this event wasn’t a bad omen.
I crushed my specialty grains and added them to my grain bag along with my base malt. I hit my mash temp of 152F and closed the cover. An hour later, my temp was 138…not really great.
I think with a 5 gallon cooler, I am going to have go all grain sooner than later.
The boil went well, the hop plugs hydrated quickly and looked beautiful.
I cooled my wort using the chiller, and I got an amazing cold break. I will chalk that up to 40F water coming out of the hose, a nice benefit to early spring brewing.
When I drained my wort into my fermenter, things went well until a rehydrated hop flower got stuck in my kettle’s outake valve. Without a strainer cleaned and sanitized, I had to improvise and poured as much of the wort as possible into the fermenter by tipping it over the top of it. I didn’t know if I should pour the hops into the fermenter, so I left a lot of them in the kettle along with a lot of the post-boil material.
I took a sample while the kettle was pouring so I could measure it at a later date. I poured in the yeast starter after I got the wort close to the optimal temperature range.
After the brew day, I went away to stay at my in-laws for Easter. When I came back today, the fermenter was alive with activity. I think I am going to relax and have a home brew.
Here are some photos:
Pic #1: Grain in the mash tun
Pic #2: A Glacier hop plug
Pic #3: Kettle boiling
Pic #4: Kettle boiling from the top
Pic #5: Wort Chilling
Pic #6: Wort sample for a OG reading later. Nice color.
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