I realize we stopped the Mule of the Month postings a while back. We were still working on where we wanted to take this blog. It's constantly changing. For instance, the brew giveaway. We have been informed that perhaps our brew giveaway is not the best idea for legal reasons. Needless to say, we are being educated as we go. Ok, back to the point of this post. This beer demanded that we say something about it in hopes that some of our readers would go out and find this beer and try it for themselves..

The Southern Tier Brewing Creme Brulle is simply put the best beer I have ever had the honor of tasting. This masterpiece checks in at 9.6%abv. The taste can only be described as perfection. It's like desert in a bottle. Serious vanilla taste mixed with chocolate. Incredibly smooth for an imperial brew. With the Creme Brulle title you would think you would be limited to one before you were filled to the brim. But this brew seems to go down easy and not take up much room. Its impressive all around in every aspect.

The Southern Tier crew has really outdone themselves this time. I've yet to have a bad beer from these guys and if this brew is any sign, this brewery has an extremely bright future ahead of them.

Music and Beer

Good afternoon Atomic Donkey friends. This is a little early but I wanted to go ahead and mention the dates for the Good Beer Festival. It's October 13th and 14th at the same location as the previous 2 years, Pemberton Park in Wicomico County, MD. It's a great event with LOTS of good brew, good people, and good music. That brings us to the other point of this post.

If you haven't heard of these guys by now, I'm happy to introduce you to The Kill Circuit. They are out of the Hampton Roads area. They don't sound like anything you've heard before. I can guarantee it. Its an completely original sound that you are going to love. Do yourselves a favor and take a listen on their website. We are lucky enough to have a CD in our possession already. It's our hope that they will be playing the Good Beer Fest. Help get these guys to our area! Email the festival folks and recommend The Kill Circuit be on the schedule. This will give you a chance to catch them before getting a ticket for one of their shows becomes impossible. Their album is on heavy rotation at Atomic Donkey Brewery. Give them a listen and you will understand why.


The Kill Circuit facebook
Like Them!

Orange Ya Glad You Read This?

That title is hilarious. It will all make sense soon.

This past Friday we received a call from a dear friend asking if we could do them a favor. We of course said yes. They have a special occasion coming up soon and were hoping we could come up with something for it. Well what we came up with was a nice light orange hefeweizen (title make sense now?). They wanted something that will go nicely in the August heat. It was short notice, but that's what we like. Once our dream is realized and we open our nice micro-brewery we will surely have times where we are rushed for whatever reason. It was the perfect test and so far so good. Yeast was pitched yesterday around 3 and this morning at 7 it was bubbling away. As stated in a previous post, we are going with blow off tubes on everything now. Learned that lesson too many times.

Also, we tested the gravity on the Socratic Method Imperial Pilsner and its at 1.017. That puts the abv right now at approx 8.6%. The taste was so good! Can not wait to try the final product. We will be transferring to a secondary in the next day or so and then dropping it to 34 degrees for the next couple months.

The Black Betty Oaked Bourbon Porter is done fermenting and is just hanging out for the next 2 weeks or so. We will then begin the oaking process and 6 days later will bottle this beauty. This one also has a great taste. A little chocolate and a lot delicious.

Times are good my friends. CHEERS!!

A Little Light Reading

This little book should be arriving at the brewery later this afternoon. I can’t wait to dive into this topic. Yeast are the most fascinating organisms I can think of. And I don’t know much at all about these little guys. Hopefully that will begin to change after I start my education tonight.

Socrates and More

The Socratic Method Imperial Pilsner we brewed for Mystery School Records is fermenting quite vigorously and the gravity is dropping quickly. The blowoff tube came in handy with this one. I’m glad we used it! The gravity reading last night was around 1.03 so there is still a ways to go.

This morning we received a request from another dear friend of Atomic Donkey Brewing. They are asking us if we can brew up something special for someone special. And of course we gave an enthusiastic YES! We will keep you updated as this unfolds. Have a great week friends. CHEERS!

Links from previous post are fixed!!

Imperial Pilsner Recipe

Below is the recipe for the Imperial Pilsner we made. If you have any questions please feel free to email anytime.

Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: White Labs #WLP802 and Saflager W- 34/70
Yeast Starter: 2L
Batch Size (Gallons): 5.5
Original Gravity: 1.084
Final Gravity: TBD
Boiling Time (Minutes): 90
Color: TBD
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 14 @ 54
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 90 @ 36

German Pilsner
Boil Size: 7.38 gal
Boil Time: 90 min

20.00 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (2.0 SRM) Grain 95.24 %
1.00 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 4.76 %
1.75 oz Sterling [6.00 %] (75 min) Hops 28.2 IBU
1.75 oz Sterling [6.00 %] (30 min) Hops 20.8 IBU
1.75 oz Sterling [6.00 %] (20 min) Hops 13.4 IBU
1.75 oz Sterling [6.00 %] (5 min) Hops -
1.00 items Irish Moss (Boil 15.0 min)
2L White Labs #WLP802

Mash Profile
Single Infusion, Light Body, Batch Sparge
Mash In: Add 21.00 qt of water at 168 F
75 min - Hold mash at 150.0 F for 75 min
-- Batch Sparge: Sparge with 4.83 gal of 168.0 F water.
-- Add water to achieve boil volume of 7.30 gal
-- Estimated Pre-boil Gravity is: 1.084 SG with all grains/extracts added
(Pre-Boil was 1.096!)

Ferment at 54F for 14 days
Rest at 60F for 3 days
Lager at 36F for 90 days

Dats a Spicey Pilsner!

Atomic Donkey staff has just brewed up our first Imperial Pilsner. It was a pretty easy brew day. Nothing really out of the ordinary. Well, that is until we took our gravity reading. Came out at a nice 1.082. If all goes as planned this little brew should come out around 9.42%. This beer is being brewed for a dear friend of the brewery and lead singer of the band Rapegoat. Amazing band. If you are into the heavier side of things check them out. You will be glad you did. Nightmares be damned! It’s not for the faint of heart.

We brewed this one with a teaspoon of grains of paradise, coriander, and 2 teaspoons of orange zest. We put a blowoff tube on this bad boy due to the anticipated extreme fermentation. We didn’t do this with the Porter we brewed recently and as the picture below shows, we should have. We made a yeast starter this time with twice the normal amount of yeast due to the high alcohol content. Sometimes you have you call in for backup. It’s sitting in the fridge at 54 degrees and will remain there for 2 weeks. After that we will be lagering for up to 3 months before bottling. Can't wait to see how this turns out.

Hop Update: They're growing fast. CHEERS!

Rapegoat Links

Rapegoat Myspace
Rapegoat Facebook
Mystery School Records
Mystery School Records Facebook

Black Betty Recipe

We keep slacking on posting recipes. Sorry about that. Here ya go.

Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: Safale S-04
Yeast Starter: No
Batch Size (Gallons): 5
Original Gravity: 1.065 - 1.063
Final Gravity: 1.016 - 1.018
Boiling Time (Minutes): 75
Color: ~45 SRM
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 21 @ 68
Bulk aging in secondary: 21 days @ 66. Add 1oz bourbon soaked oak chips with 6 days left to go. Age for 1-3 months in bottles.

Grain bill
9# 2 Row
1# Choc. Malt
1# Crystal 40L
8 oz. Flaked Barley
4 oz. Black Patent
2 oz. brown sugar
1 oz. Roasted Barley

Mash at 153 degrees for 60 minutes. Batch sparge to get 6.8 gallons for boil.

Add 2 ounces brown sugar to boil at 10 minutes.


0.5 oz. Cascade (Whole leaf, 7.2AA) at 60 min.
0.75 oz. Chinook (pellet, 14.2AA) at 60 min.
0.75 oz Tettnang (pellet, 5.1AA) at 15 min.

Black Betty

Another brew day has come and gone. The brewing process itself ran smoothly. You ever have one of those days where you can’t get out of your own way? That was me yesterday. I’m lucky I didn’t mess up the batch or worse yet, spill 7 gallons of boiling wort all over myself. I think I must have knocked everything down at some point. But I survived and so did the Black Betty Oaked Bourbon Porter. That name was given to her by a dear friend of Atomic Donkey Brewing. As of now it is just a nice Robust Porter in the making. Another 3 weeks or so and the bourbon soaked oak chips will be going in.

We ended up with a little over 84% brewhouse efficiency. Obviously we were very happy with this. The SG hit 1.06 which is in the ballpark of what we were aiming for. The color is a nice dark brown to almost black with a terrific smell. Pitched the yeast around 5 pm yesterday and as of 6 this morning the airlock was bubbling away.

All in all this was a fun beer to make. We can’t wait to get the oak chips in and see how this thing turns out. I believe we are going to be very proud of this one. Hope everyone’s weekend went as well as ours. Take care of each other and yourselves. CHEERS!