This past Friday I happened to be off of work (sick child) and it was a rather nice day. So what better to do than brew? And what better to brew than the next batch of Atomic Donkeys ZaPorter? We have had many requests for our Vanilla bean, Hazelnut, Espresso Porter and so we decided it was time. This was only a 5 gallon batch so it was not that long of a day. We started around 11 and were all cleaned up by 4. We were joined in the middle of the session by the owner of Crooked Oak Brewing along with some other friends. Everything went according to plan.
Original Gravity: 1.055
Target Final Gravity: 1.014
The last time we brewed this it was mainly to be enjoyed by others. We saw very little of it stay at the brewery. This time around the goal is to keep half in house and the rest to go to those that want it. As much as we love our creations, it's even more rewarding to watch others enjoy it.
For more information on this brew please see the previous write up on ZaPorter. CHEERS!
So this past Saturday Crooked Oak Brewing and Atomic Donkey Brewing took a ride up to the new Xtreme Brewing location in Laurel, Delaware. No real idea what type of brew we were going to make. More or less we wanted to see the new store. And it did not disappoint. The place looks great. Its a very hands on experience now. Crush all your own grain on one of the 2 large mills. Hops and yeast are easily accessible. One thing that has not changed is the friendliness of Doug and Patty and all who work for them.
The brews we decided on after a nice tour of the new place was a porter and an Irish red. Atomic Donkey will be recreating the ZaPorter from a while back. It included vanilla bean, hazelnut, and espresso. All extracted on site at Atomic Donkey Brewing. While Crooked Oak will be going with a bourbon, pumpkin porter. The Irish Red recipe is the same one we brewed up for the Battle of the Brews some 2 years or so ago now. We are excited about both of these brews but especially the Red. It's been too long since we brewed up a good red. One of our favorite styles. (Interesting history behind pumpkin brewed ales. Take a look here)
So onto Sunday morning. We had grand plans of starting the brews bright and early at 6am. Just like the last go round. Well, a late night of fun on Saturday moved that time up till 8:30. So instead of getting 2 brews done we only managed 1. We got Crooked Oaks Pumpkin Porter done in time to catch the Eagles game at 1. Everything went well. No burns or scratches. Even managed to get a swig of bourbon and a few beers into the mix. At one point some of the Chesapeake Bays finest even showed up.
The efficiency came out right at 76%. Could be better but that's not bad at all. I'm quickly becoming a fan of the early morning brewing. 6am is ideal to me. Especially when doing larger batches. I could spend sun up to sun down brewing every single day. Brewing is something I love more and more. Every batch I make brings me around the reality that I want to spend the rest of my working days creating delicious and fun brews.
Hope you enjoyed this short write up on our brewing day. Next one is coming sometime this week. We will have something up asap. Sometimes life (children) do not allow for the immediate posting like we want. But we will do our best. CHEERS!!
So we finally had a chance to get our Imperial Pilsner into kegs the other night. The final abv came in at 9.4%. Its bit higher than we thought it would be, but the taste is great so we are happy. Had two last night and wow. Don't need many more than that. If you want to be standing upright that is. Meanwhile, the poor Homegrown IPA 10 gallon batch we brewed sometime ago is still in buckets. The goal is to bottle them before the week is out. The thought of bottling 100+ brews makes me tired. But we will get it done and it will be another great Atomic Donkey Brew. So we will get it done and we will be sipping on our Imperial Pils while we do it. I will have pictures up of the pilsner and bottling fun with the IPA. Stay tuned. CHEERS!