Steve and I have finally finished our second successful all grain home brew. Once again we used his Brooklyn Brew Shop brewing system that he was given as a gift. We used the Chestnut Brown Ale mix that comes with everything you need but the optional chestnuts. We were unable to find chestnuts so brewed the beer as per the package.
The brew went down without a hitch and his little one was even able to help in her first ever brew.
The beer sat for two weeks to ferment and then we transferred our Growler Werks Ukeg‘s to force carbonate. We set the Ukeg’s to 15PSI for three days agitating multiple times a day. Today was the day to try the carbonated beer.
The beer poured a deep brown colour with a brown head (different lighting on both photos). The aroma consisted of caramel, nuts, sweetness and a hint of fruit. The flavour was of toffee, caramel, nuts, earth and some medium bitterness. While this beer does not stand up to commercially made craft beer I could taste no off flavours and it was quite enjoyable. If Steve and I could do our first two batches without off flavours and a pretty darn good flavour I would have to say that I would highly recommend the Brooklyn Brew Shop system. It is also nice to be able to force carbonate your beer if you have the ability as bottle conditioning can be a crap shoot. Our first batch 50% of the bottles were way over carbonated. With the Ukeg it was perfectly carbonated.
From Hearthstone Brewery in North Vancouver comes their “Rizzla Rice Lager”. This beer is certified Gluten Friendly by both White Labs and Siebel Institute by having both labs test every batch of the beer to a threshold of 10 parts per million of gluten. The beer pours a light straw yellow colour with a white head. The aroma consists of mild bready malts, almost caramel, rice, citrus and a crisp finish. The flavour is of bready and grainy malts, rice, mild caramel, citrus, sweetness, mild grassy hops and a crisp low bitterness finish. The alcohol content comes in at 4.5% with an IBU of 18. If you are looking for a nice crisp clean lager this could be a good choice for sure. If you are looking for a gluten friendly beer this is definitely a good choice for you!
Commercial Description: Rizla Rice Lager is an easy drinking Asian style lager. A great session beer for watching sports, weather, and people. Brewed using rice properly, for flavour rather than filler, bittered with classic northern brewer hops to balance the rice sweetness. Makes a great house lager. Gluten reduced to less than 10 parts per million & it tastes great! Every batch is tested twice by two labs. All the flavour not the gluten!
From Strange Fellows Brewing in Vancouver comes their first of four beer of 2017 in their fellowship club the “Berliner Geist Barrel-Aged Berliner Weisse”. The beer pours an orange colour with a white head. The aroma consists of tartness, sweetness, citrus, orange, vanilla and oak. The flavour is of tartness, lemon, vanilla, oak, sweetness, citrus rind with a good acidic finish. Especially for a 4.5% alcohol this one is huge on flavour while not packing a huge punch on the alcohol side. I am really happy to be part of the Fellowship again this year.
Commercial Description: BERLINER GEIST: This barrel-aged and bottle conditioned Berliner Weisse is distinctly sour and complex (refreshing), with a delicate woody vanilla character and an oaky aroma. At 5% ABV this is a slightly lighter but deeply flavourful release perfect for laying down or enjoying on a summer evening.
From Spinnakers Gastro Brewpub in Victoria BC comes the “Raspberry Lager”. The beer pours a deep amber colour with a tan head. The aroma consists of raspberries, sweetness and grains. The flavour is of raspberry, grain, caramel, sweetness and some low bitterness. The alcohol content comes in at 4.5% with an IBU of 8. While I am not a fan of lagers in general this one was actually really interesting. I would not hesitate to grab more of this one.
Commercial Description: A generous dosing of raspberries grown at Michells Farm on the Saanich Peninsula gives this clean, crisp, cold, fermented lager the unmistakable juiciness of raspberries! Cheers to sunny days!
From Hearthstone Brewery in North Vancouver comes their “Wyld Raspberry Berliner Weisse”. The beer pours a reddish pink colour with a small white head. The aroma is of Raspberry, sweetness but not to much else. The flavour is of raspberry, tartness with some undertones of sweetness with a mild malt note. The alcohol content comes in at 3.2% with an IBU of 00. You can not go wrong with a nice session sour ale and this one will not disappoint.
Commercial Description: We brew this the way they did back in the day, using a 100% wild lactobacillus bacteria to sour the beer, then we bring it back into the kettle and add 200lbs of real, whole local raspberries resulting in a pink, tart and refreshing summer beer.