Sunday, 23 June 2013

Sunday 23 June, 2013 -- Full Moon Oatmeal Stout and Masonic Scottish 70 Shilling

We have a new name! We're calling ourselves Trilemma Craft Brewers, or TCB for short. It's a good name. We're Taking Care of Business.

Things have been moving along quite nicely in the brewery. We've made two worts now and have them in the cubes ready for fermenting.

Wort Preparation
The first was an Oatmeal Stout. We did this one Friday night, while the full moon was shining through the window of the shed. It was cold, and dark, and the shed filled with steam. We noticed a fair bit of condensation dripping from the roof back into the boil. Should we be worried that the roof is made from asbestos? I dunno.

We roasted a little bit of the oatmeal before throwing it in the pot. It seemed to dissolve pretty quickly. The colour was amazing; a rich, dark black. Looked promising and smelled great. We got almost three cubes of wort that night. 

The second batch was a traditional Scottish 70 Shilling. It's a beer I fell in love with when I lived in Scotland 20 years ago and I've never been able to find it since. It was my first experience of a beer that wasn't a commercial lager, and me and my mate Shaun would drink it by the case load. I hope it's as good as I remember.

We filled exactly 3 cubes with wort and it's in the cupboard, ready to go.

Other developments
After a few beers one night, Michael and I decided that we needed to increase our production. We had a really neat set-up with a normal fridge as a priming fridge, and a heat strip to keep the temperature steady at 22 degrees. But our Fermenter could only hold one cube, and after bottling, we managed to make about 1 slab of beer. Quite good, but once we split it three ways, this meant 8 beers each. Those who know me will realise that this was never going to be enough beer. Michael's share of the first IPA's is almost all gone. I have a couple left. Clearly, we were going to need more beer.

The answer -- buy a bigger fridge to prime in. Michael found a commercial sized fridge and bought it for $600. Money well spent, we think. The next plan is to get hold of two 60 litre fermenters, and have them both going at the same time. This means LOADSA BEER!!!!!!!!!

My mate Michael Mules made us a hand-crafted wooden paddle for stirring the mash. We fell in love with it immediately. I didn't have a photo of it. Maybe Michael does.

We're still experimenting with ways to move the fermented liquid from the "Better Bottle" to the larger container for bottling. The tap sucks, we couldn't get the siphon tool to work. We need another solution.

We're thinking of cultivating our own yeast.

We've abandoned the idea of making a sack for the grain when making the mash. We're just using a strip of voile from Spotlight.

Bungs at "Grape and Grain

The lid's on, the boil is happening. Check out the voile.

I'm digging the overalls and grand-dad's cap

We lifted out the mash and let it drip into containers. Brought it back to a boil



Filling the cubes

Look at our new fridge for priming

we could both fit in there

That's the Oatmeal Stout on the table
Lots of room in there
Here's the Oatmeal Stout


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