This TIPSy is rather short and will be just rule of thumb bullet points.

  • Store in cool dark places
  • Avoid swings in temperature
  • Don’t age beers under 8% ABV
  • Delicate flavors and bitterness disappear with time (so avoid aging IPAs)
  • Store beer upright, not on its side (and yes, if there is a cork you can store it either way)
  • If possibly, get multiples a beer for periodic tastings
  • Don’t be greedy, share your prized age beer with friends!

And even though I’ve recommended a limit at 8% ABV, it is kind of flexible when considering sour beers. It should also be said that run of the mill craft beers are not pasteurized and so they usually have a 3-6 month shelf life from time of packaging. Don’t hold on to those beers for too long or they might end up tasting like vinegar.

It is both fun and terrifying any time we get a new piece of equipment to use in our brewing process. Of course we purchase these new items to solve a problem that has existed during previous brewing sessions. However, these items can also contribute to growing pains. Basically anything that we add to the process comes with its own complications that need to be worked through.

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This tip is going to be a much shorter one and is going to be directed towards the home brewer and curious individuals in general. Plus I’ll add a little brewing story at towards the end of this post.

This tip has to do with yeast, yum! While they don’t taste good by themselves, without the help of yeast, beer would be quite disappointing and extremely non-alcoholic. You should also be aware that there are tons of yeast varieties, and many different companies that cultivate and distribute yeast specifically for brewing. The complication is that sometimes you are looking for a particular yeast form a particular yeast company, maybe because it is associated with a beer you really like. For example, let’s say that you want to get some yeast that was made to make Hoegaarden and you find out that they use Forbidden Fruit wheat yeast from Wyeast, but your local shop doesn’t have any of that yeast. Continue reading

Awhile ago I came across an article that pretty much confirmed that I knew what I was doing while working on my master’s thesis. This article, actually, by Mikael Cho on the usages of my two most favorite liquids in the world, coffee and beer.

Perhaps you never gave it any thought, but beer allows you to get pretty creative (just Youtube some “hold my beer” moments) as it removes inhibitions and puts you in a more relax state (duh).  However, you wouldn’t want to be consuming beer while needing to do a detail oriented task as it tends to make your actions a little sloppy (again, just YouTube some “hold my beer” moments), and I’m sure it goes without saying that you should avoid dangerous tasks, e.g. driving or operating heavy machinery.

For the tasks that require a little bit more precision, we have the king of caffeine, coffee! One sec, let me go grab another cup … aaaahhhh, that sure hits the spot! Nothing beats a cup of joe in the morning, and for good reason. It doesn’t actually give you energy, but rather blocks the chemicals that cause you to feel sluggish. Either way you look at it, it sure feels great and helps you power through those annoying corporate emails.

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Year is flying right along, and today I’m dropping the latest brewing news, website news, and an introduction to hopefully an on going feature here at the site, TIPSy Tuesdays.

Space Hop IPA is a very basic recipe with an F-ton of hops (12 oz of high alpha acid hops for 12 gallons of beer!). This was also the first beer that we got to use our RIMS (Recirculating Infusion Mash System) which kept us from worrying about mash temperature for the first time ever. If we don’t run into any fermentation problems, this IPA should be ready for consumption by the 4th of July.

The website has gotten a couple more pages to use to keep you up-to-date on both the beers that have gotten brewed, as well as the hop garden progress. So be sure to check out the Brew Archive and the Green Thumb sections of the site for their expanding log of information. Also, during the storms at the end of May we have a fallen warrior. The old trusted Raspberry Pi that we were using to log fermentation temperatures has fell on rough times, and that means the Temperature Monitor will be out of commission till we complete the necessary repairs.

And lastly, TIPSy Tuesdays (see what I did there?) will be a weekly posting of a tip that is somehow associated with beer in some way. The first tip gives you some scientifically backed knowledge on how to handle that meat of yours.

According to a study by Olga Maria da Silva Viegas, a faculty of Nutrition and Food Sciences, University of Porto (Portugal), using beer as a marinade for your meat helps reduce the amount of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (nasty toxic compounds) caused by grilling with charcoal. Out of the three beers tested (5.2%ABV Pilsner, 0.5% nonalcoholic Pilsner, and 5% Black beer ), the Black beer (I’m guessing Super Bock Stout) provided the highest inhibition of those PAH compounds, blocking over 50%. To achieve this, just marinate some pork in a 1:1 beer to meat ratio for 4 hours at 5°C (or 41°F). If you actually go out of your way and use this tip, be sure to leave us a comment on how your grilling turned out!