A couple days ago, I posted my “brew year’s” resolutions. One of the resolutions was to make a brewing plan (that I would later ignore when I come up with a better one). So . . . here it is, my brewing plan for 2014. I’m starting the countdown clock for when I deviate this . . . now.
I’m going to start off brewing my Patrick Henry Pale Ale, because pale ale is “just plain beer” to me and this is my go-to homebrew. I’ve already got the ingredients for this and the next one.
I’ll also brew Beelzeboss (just a 3-gallon batch), my beer made using Mt. Dew (the soda pop) as the brewing liquor. I know it’s silly, but I like it.
In February, I’ll take the first shot at my imperial tripel, Palpatine’s Tripel. I’ll probably make a 3-gallon (11-L) batch for the test batch. This beer uses the reiterated mashing technique, and I haven’t made a beer this way in over a year.
I’ll also brew an exercise beer, because I want to lose weight and get in better shape. The idea is to brew a beer to drink after my workout, and have it contain some salts, sort of like Gatoraid or Pedialyte. I think I’ll brew a a dry version of my copper ale (so-called because of the color) with a fairly low starting gravity (OG 1.044?). That way, I won’t replace all the Calories I burned with a single beer. Post-fermentation, I’ll add oral rehydration salts (following the proportions the WHO recommends for oral rehydration therapy). I’ll do a bench trial with some commercial beer to see how much I can add before I can taste it. I’ll add the salts after fermentation so the yeast don’t consume them. I need to think up a name for this one.
I haven’t brewed a German hefe-weizen in awhile, so I’ll dust off my Klinkerweizen recipe and do a full-on decoction-mashed wheat beer with a ferulic acid rest.
Many years ago, I made a Vienna lager I really liked. Time to brew it again. I’ll probably kräusen this beer to condition it.
In April, I’m going to brew 10 or 15 gallons (or maybe 20?) of wheat beer and sour it with Wyeast’s lambic blend or maybe their Roselaere blend. I’ll probably go all-grain, but I could go with all extract, like the simple sour beer recipe I posted earlier. (Or maybe a partial mash.) Near the end of summer, when cherries and raspberries are ripe and still in season, I’ll add some fruit. Then, I’ll let the beer sit for about a year. (Alternately, I could wait a year, then add the fruit. We’ll see.)
At this point, with summer in Texas coming, I’m going to brew a nice session beer, probably a 10-gallon batch. I’ll have to decide between my dry stout (Cure from Cork, which is basically a Murphy’s clone) or a bitter (like Leg of Ordinary Biters). When I brew a session beer, I usually make a 10-gallon batch. The grain bill is small for session beers and doubling the 5-gallon recipe lets me reach a grain bed depth in my mash tun I’m more happy with. Plus, more beer.
In May, it’s barleywine time. I’ll probably follow my Hero and Sidekick recipe, as this makes an American barleywine similar to Bigfoot and a second pale ale from the same grain bed. If I brew it then, it should be ready by winter.
In June, I’ll brew Colby House Porter, my other go-to beer aside from my pale ale.
By June, I should be able to see how the imperial tripel turned out. If so, I’ll sample and rebrew.
Planning can be a good thing, but I like to leave room for something spontaneous in my schedule. So, I’m just putting down a question mark for August. (Also, I only have one beer scheduled per month starting in May, so I have room to squeeze some beers in, especially for experiments.)
Patrick Henry Pale Ale again. I usually brew this and the porter twice a year.
In early October, I’ll brew my winter warmer, Fimbulvinter Øl, so that it’s ready for the holidays.
I didn’t brew my Cranberry Zinger this year and people (OK, one person) asked about it. I’ll brew this about three weeks before Thanksgiving.
Colby House Porter again.