With the New Brunswick Big Brew approaching (June 15th-17th) and no beer in my fridge, it was time to get my brew on. With yeast, hops and grain orders all complete I was ready to go.
Saturday morning usually means one of two things: market or brewing. The market won out this time around, so I started the brew day rather late…it was after 1Pm before I mashed in. No big deal.
My problem, it seems, when I brew is that I tend not to be very well prepared on brew day. Not much I can say about this other than I have a wife (in the middle of dance shows) and kids (in many sports). So, needless to say it was a bit of a mad rush to get started. Hurdle #1: No recipe, no problem. I knew I was going to brew a British Ale and I have made many of these in the past so no big deal. Hurdle #2: I recently reconfigured my PC with a new OS…no software. No problem, I purchased the new version of Beersmith (V2) that I had yet to try. With a bit of tweaking, I was able to get Beersmith running with my Beersmith (v1) recipes, malts, water, etc. The other hurdles was just dirty equipment that with a bit of hot water, oxyclean and elbow grease, I was good to go.
The day was a warm sunny spring day. As I started (finally), my friend Jayson came out to pick some hops that I had of his left over from our hop order. After some chit chat, Jayson was off with his hops to prepare for his brew day on Sunday. Turns out Jayson brewed a variation of my Orange Rye Porter.
Shortly there after, Kevin came out while I was still in the mash stage. It was great to see him and talk. With busy schedules, it had been a while. Back in less busy times, Kevin was usually with me on brew days. We sampled my Helles that I brewed back in March and caught up on our lives.
After Kevin left, the rest of the brew day was spent having a few beer with my wife and next door neighbour. Which meant, I wouldn’t clean up until the next day.
I don’t brew enough. Brewing for me is a stress release. The opportunity to create something from raw materials and be able to taste the outcome is fantastic!!! I take pride in the beer that I make. This goes with cooking also. I am not a big fan of throwing something in the microwave for supper. I like taking the time to make supper, like brewing, it calms me.