Rather unexpectedly – I have a week from work. When I say unexpectedly – I did of course book it (as told by ‘er in doors) then promptly took no notice, but it’s here, we have nothing planned and I am going to spend a good majority of it on my brewery.
As I type this, I have in front of me 9 whole day’s in which to add value to my little brewing domain – I am definitively starting with good intentions. Today I shall contemplate what I need, order some “stuff” then try and avoid the usual circus of will he, won’t he (then the inevitable – no he fucking didn’t) sort it out scenario which seems to be on constant play and repeat with me. Still, as I said – good intentions.
So, where am I currently? Well, besides sitting here at the keyboard supping on a bottled Milk Stout – I have 3 kegs on tap conditioning, in addition I still have the grain ready for the Jim Payne memorial brew. I have a reason for not starting this yet; that is that I have no kegs in which to place it once complete, however I will resolve that in the next few days when I procure 3 more. I will brew this week – that’s a promise.
In terms of these current beers and how they are – I can say with confidence that they do not carry any off flavours (I think), they are very well carbonated and temperatures about right. My Dry Stout, looks and smells like one, my London Bitter the same (and is also very clear) and my Brown Porter again like the stout is on point in the same respects. However, it’s the taste that counts and on this I am unsure. For the stout, this has been conditioning for 3 weeks and if you recall on my first attempt the keg kicked about now – I am happy to report that there is plenty in that keg. I must state that I am rather ok with the taste, not over whelmed but ok. It definitely tastes of stout, the mouth feel is great also – but at the back end of said taste I feel there is something present. I can only best explain it as a sort of “flatness” in taste – like drinking the dregs from a glass the morning after? It is less prevalent over time so I am thinking (hoping) that it is just a conditioning thing. Now for the bitter, this has had just over 2 weeks of conditioning and I am more happy with the front end taste – the question I have here is that the taste drops off very quickly – there are the initial toffee notes – but reminiscent of a cheap commercial lager – the taste disappears leaving not much on the tongue. I hope this improves over the coming 2 weeks. Finally the porter – here I have bigger hopes; its been in the keg just a few days (but was cold crashing for a week as I couldn’t gather the energy to keg) – but already it’s an acceptable tasting beer. Again, like the bitter the taste doesn’t linger much but this one at least has the excuse of age on this beer.
As I ponder these words and sip a little more from these 3 beers (purely research of course) – I have to concede on a number of things. Firstly, these are only my 2nd, 3rd and 4th all grain brews ever – they suffer not from oxidisation or other such off flavours (at least as far as my inexperienced palate can detect). Secondly, that they are plain, base recipes – the sort of middle of the road brews one might buy at the local and finally that I usually chug down beers of a more robust, flavoured nature – it is therefore not likely that they will compare. My conclusion is that I need more research for the sake of progress – I simply need to drink a few like for like beers. A famous quote comes to mind from a certain Richard E Grant of “Withnail and I” – for my comparison to have merit – “I SIMPLY MUST HAVE MORE BOOZE”.
Short one today. Hopefully more during the week as I make progress.
(aka Drunk Delilah Brewery)