Bacon Maple Early Tasting

For the most part my curiosity is hard to keep in check.  Once my beer gets bottled, it is hard for me not to think about what the final product is going to be like.  From my first extract batch until now, I find it quite hard to wait even two weeks for the beers to get even a decent amount of bottle conditioning.  The Bacon Maple Ale, now dubbed “The Balanced Breakfast Brew” was no different.  Seven days.  That’s as long as I could hold out.  Boy, I must have a weak will.

The good thing happens to be that this beer – which I was sure was going to be a total train wreck – actually is tasting pretty darn good at this stage in its life.   Continue reading

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Brooklyn Wort Beer and Bacon Maple Beer update

Bacon makes EVERYTHING taste better... I hope

Bacon makes EVERYTHING taste better… I hope

The experiment that is bacon maple beer is a couple steps closer to hopefully turning out as such.  Over the past few days I’ve added bacon and a bit of fenugreek to the beer in secondary.  Tasting the beer two days after the bacon infusion I was unable to get any taste of bacon to come through yet.  I’ll take a taste tomorrow and see if it is any stronger.  The strong, roasty character of the beer is going to be hard to punch through.  The fenugreek seeds I received smell pretty strongly of maple but also have a celery smell to them.  I didn’t add much to the beer, but that too was not coming through the roastiness.  More time is needed to find out just how freakishly this experiment is going to turn out.  Continue reading

Maple Bacon Breakfast Ale

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Time to experiment!

I think once in a while it is good to go off the deep end and experiment with something completely different even if you know it will probably fail.  This beer is going to be one of those times.  While enjoying a few beers with a bunch of my friends, we started talking about different beer flavors that may work well.  The idea of a breakfast themed beer caught my attention and curiosity.  At the time I had no idea that Rogue makes a version of bacon maple ale.  When I found this out, I was disheartened but my resolve was unwavering.  When I looked at the reviews of the Rogue beer on BeerAdvocate.com, that’s when I wavered… but only for a second.  How much harm could one tiny, one-gallon batch of beer do?  Forget the fact that as I’m writing this I’m still not completely sure how I’m going to prepare the bacon, or the fact that I’ve read that getting maple flavor to stay in the beer and not be fermented out can be tricky.  Those can easily be overcome with a little research and common sense.  What can’t be overcome is the fact that I’m almost positive I added too much carafa II to the mash.  This could turn into a roasty mess. Continue reading

Strawberry Wheat Judging Sheet

I got my first score sheet back from the Brooklyn Wort preliminary round and I’m happy with the results.  My Strawberry Wheat beer scored 38/50.

“Looks great, pours nice, with thick lingering head.  Strawberries come through.  Well carbonated.  No noticeable flaws.  Even more carbonation would improve it.  It does have a slightly sweet aftertaste that makes me think it might be better if it was even more dry.”

Not bad, I’d say.  Sounds like the only problems that were found were things that are easily corrected.  Next iteration of this beer will be mashed at a lower temperature and carbonation boosted somewhat.

The decent rating for this beer really gives me confidence that I can brew a beer that can compete for the top prizes in the finals.  Whichever beer that becomes, I will have to start brewing it in the next week or so… but, before that happens, I’m brewing up a special experimental batch that is pretty far out there.

Details of that beer to come very soon… It has a high chance of coming out horribly, but I have to try it anyways.  Besides, a one gallon batch isn’t going to ruin my life if it doesn’t come out wonderfully.