2016 Beers

I’m finding that I don’t have the time to write about each beer. So I think I’ll just start doing an annual post of the beers that year.  If anyone reads this besides me let me know what you think of the format.  

In 2016 I made 933 12 ounce beers though most of it went into kegs.  This is about double from the previous year.  The majority of it was made on a 3 day brewing bender when Lisa took the boys to California.  It was exhausting brewing that much, but well worth it.

Companies such as Booze Up in London, UK offer same day alcohol delivery and can take them to your home.

Beer Name Brew Day
#16 – Dapale 4/10/2016
#17 – The Axe v3 5/13/2016
#18 – Kate The Great 5/14/2016
#19- Daddy’s Milk 5/14/2016
#20 – DreWster 5/15/2016
#21 -Persuasion Saison 8/6/2016
#23 – The Backcountry Homebrew Club Whisky Barrel Aged Imperial Brown Ale 9/5/2016
#22 – Change Up 11/19/2016



#16 – Dapale  (4/10/2016)

  • Style: American Pale Ale
  • OG/FG:  1.056  / 1.012
  • ABV:6.1%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: 16G / 12G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $0.60  

This was a Dale’s Pale Ale clone.  It wasn’t exactly like DPA, but pretty darn good none-the-less.  One of the main thrust for this beer was that I wanted just an easy drinking hoppy-ish beer, but didn’t want to make an IPA where the hops would fade so fast.  The previous summer DPA was by go to beer so this seemed like a good choice to clone and possible become a regular rotation in my beers.  Also, this was the yeast starter for the next three beers.  

#17 -The Axe v3 (5/13/2016)

  • Style: Cross between an American Red and Irish Red Ale
  • OG/FG:  1.070  / 1.012
  • ABV: 8.2%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: 11G / 10G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $0.59  

This was the first of 4 beers made in the 3 day brewing spree.  It is also the third variant of this recipe, which is an original recipe by me.  This was pretty close to what I’ve been aiming for.  I don’t think I ever wrote any tasting notes, but I tend to recall that I want to make the next version slightly less bitter.  

#18 – The Empress

  • Style: Russian Imperial Stout
  • OG/FG:  1.099  / 1.022
  • ABV: 11.2%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: 11G / 11G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $1.06  

This is a Kate the Great (KtG) clone beer and the first big beer that I’ve made.  With living in CO, I finally had space to store this beer for ~6 months to let it age out.  I bottled 5G and kegged 5G of this beer.  I tapped the keg on 11/30/2016 and today, 10/17/2017, I still have the same keg going.  You don’t drink a whole lot of an 11% beer at one time.    The real KtG is placed in port barrels so I soaked oak spirals in port.  At one time I looked in the bag and it had spilled so I placed more port on the spirals.  I’m pretty sure I didn’t get any oak out of the spirals. Finally, I poured the port all into the beer.   I think the port is over powering, but the beer is still well received and I like too.

#19 – Daddy’s Milk

  • Style: Sweet/Milk Stout
  • OG/FG:  1.061  / 1.015
  • ABV: 6.3%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: 8.25G / 8.3G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $0.05

This is my first partygyle beer to make.  It was made from the second runnings from #18 – The Empress.  This beer was practically free; the grain came from batch #18 – The Empress, the yeast came from #16 – Dapale, and the water was basic tap water.  The only thing I paid for was the propane and the minuscule 2.6oz of hops. The basis of the beer was to be a Left Hand Milk Stout clone.  With the grain already set from #18, I mimiced the lactose and hops profile to end up with my beer.  I was able to fit the wort in what is normally my HLT and boil this the same time I was chilling down #18.  In the end it only extended my brew day a couple of hours to get a second beer. Ignoring the cost this was a really good beer and definitely made me want to try this again.   

#20 – DreWster

  • Style: Belgian Golden Strong Ale
  • OG/FG:  1.086  / 1.007
  • ABV: 11.1%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: 11G / 11G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $0.73 

This beer has 4 fun stories to it.  The first is that the yeast from this beer comes from the dregs of four North Coast’s PranQster Belgian Golden Strong beer.  I kept the dregs and slowly built up the yeast to get a pitching rate that would support this beer.  The beer fermented down as far as I was hoping making for a really dry beer.  Second part to this beer, it that I transferred this beer to two 5G carboys nearly to the top.  After aging this for a while I transferred 5G to a keg.  The beer tended to pour foamy, but I was trying to get the CO2 volumes high so that it could fit the style.  The beer had a great golden color and tasted pretty nice.  The second 5G I bottled about 3 weeks after I kegged the first 5G.  For some reason the beer had a purple haze to it.  Since this beer was from the same wort and yeast as the other 5G I ruled out many flaws.  With some help from the guys a Brew Hut we concluded that this was likely due to oxygen exposure.  I’m not sure how this would have had more oxygen than the other 5G, but I hesitantly tasted it and it tasted fine.  ).  So I went ahead to bottle it.  Since the CO2 volume on this beer is supposed to be so high I had to use the Belgian corked beers.  I borrowed a corker from a friend in the home brew club and bought several cases of bottles from Craigslist.  Turns out the bottles were really really dirty so I spent a night cleaning them.  In the process of cleaning one bottle I notice a huge amount of mold or something in the bottle as I got the crud out I looked at it a bit closer and almost vomited.  The crud as a decayed mouse.  There was a spinal cord and a fit of fuzz that separated when I poured it into my cleaning water.  Needless to say I threw that bottle out.  I also dumped all my cleaning water, cleaned the container, and finished cleaning the last few beer bottles.  Ugg, what a night of cleaning bottles.  I’ve since called this the Royal DreWster and shared it at a home brew crawl.  I don’t think it is as good as the golden version, but most seem to still like it. Finally, the last story to this is the name.  Most Belgian beers have a demonic name. With all the hard times we had had with Drew (mind you I was waking up for the day a 4:30 everyday with him and hiding in the basement until Lisa and Chase woke up too) I thought DreWster was quite fitting with capitalization having a nod towards the PranQster of which the yeast came from.  Oh, one last thing.  Since I went through so much effort to cultivate this yeast I looked into storing it for a long duration.  I read about freezing yeast in glycol and have done that.  I haven’t yet used the yeast again to see if it worked, but someday I’ll find out.

#21 – Persuasion Saison

  • Style: Saison
  • OG/FG:  1.064  / 1.004
  • ABV: 8.2%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: 13.4G / 14G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $0.71 

I managed to actually do a separate post on this beer so go there for more info.

#22 – Change Up

  • Style: Kolsch
  • OG/FG:  1.048  / 1.013
  • ABV: 4.7%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: 16.65G / 16G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $0.49 

This was the 3rd instantiation of this beer.  The I wrote up the first two in #9 – Kolsch and #13 –  Change Kolsch (16G).    I called this one Change Up as I had changed the hops around a bit to use some of things I had laying around in the 60 minute addition.  Therorically this shouldn’t have really changed the flavor.  It seemed like what I did the previous times, but I doubt if I made the same beer back to back it would taste the same anyways.  This started something that I’ve done for a few beer since in that I only wanted 10G for myself so I invited a friend over for the brewday and he took home 5G when it was all fermented out and bottled.  This is certainly  a beer to keep in rotation.

#23 -The Backcountry Homebrew Club Whisky Barrel Aged Imperial Brown Ale

  • Style: Imperial Brown Ale, aged in a second use Whisky Barrel
  • OG/FG:  1.077  / 1.016
  • ABV: 8.5%
  • Batch Size / Beer Made: ~60G / 55G
  • Batch cost per 12oz:  $0.89

As the name suggests this beer was made by my homebrew club.  We bought a used Whisky barrel from the Brew Hut / Dry Dock.  After getting the barrel we spun a few ideas around for a style and then iterated on a recipe until we called it good enough.  All the wort was brewed in one day on 3 systems to fill the barrel.  I didn’t get to help this day any only briefly swung by to drop off my carboy and to say thanks.  I think Kyle, Kirk, Jeff, and Dave did all the work.  After the beer fermented out it was transferred to the barrel and kept in Kirk’s basement where he would tease us with tasting notes and photos occasionally.  We kept the beer in the barrel for ~2 months and this split it out 11 ways.  I bottled my 5Gs.  A brown ale was the way to go on the beer as the barrel only contributed a slight whisky note.  Anything stronger that we had been considering like a RIS probably would have over powered the barrel flavors.  Kirk entered this in a competition once,but I forget what they said about it.   


Leave a Reply