Figured I’d track what I was doing in the brewery, or so it’s called when my wife see’s me put my apron on, and keep some notes lest I forget what the hell I was doin’.
August 12, 2017 – Caramelizing Honey & Blueberry Mead
I started the process at around 10 AM, and by 8 PM it had finally reached 220º F. I think I’ll stop here. After 10 hours on high in the crockpot, I’m satisfied that the level of caramelization is where I want it. It’s several shades darker, smells like toasted marshmallows, and I think it will go well with the specialty grains and dark extract syrup I chose for the project.
Another small project I have been working on is a blueberry mead using 71B, a yeast I have had issues
with in the past. This is simply 3 lbs of frozen blueberries that sat for 24 hours on pectic enzymes to help break up the cell structure for more juice and flavor, I also threw in 1 pound of mango chunks I had sitting in the freezer also. Around 3 pounds of orange blossom and a bit of wildflower to get me to 1.132 for a starting gravity, now sitting at 1.022, I racked it and put it in my keezer for a cold crash.
August 11, 2017 – Pumpkin Braggot Stout
My missing grain was delivered today, 1 pound of Crystal 70/80L and 1 pound of coffee malt. I had placed a big order a week ago, hoping to get my pumpkin project off the ground last Wednesday, but had to postpone. The task at hand now is to caramelize 6 pounds of wildflower honey to about 230º F and hold it there for about 10 minutes. I’ll get that done tomorrow. I’m considering doing it in my cast iron dutch oven on the stove instead of the crockpot. That should give me a nice roasty flavor without going to the burn marshmallow stage. I have all my grains bagged and ready for the hot-tub, hope to get started by Monday. I made up my own pumpkin spice blend using 8 tsp cinnamon, 4 tsp ground ginger, 2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg, 2 tsp ground allspice and 1 tsp ground cloves. My brew calls for 2 Tbsp of the blend at flameout. More tomorrow, if I don’t forget.