Use FreshBeerOnly.com to figure out the silly codes on your cans and bottles (assuming it isn’t obvious). They even remind you on the homepage which beer styles are best fresh and which ones can be aged.

A reminder that the majority of craft beers (with the exception of those which are able to be cellared) that aren’t intended to be aged usually have just over a 3 month shelf life (100 days or 1/3 of a year). Each brewery has their own method of freshness suggesting.

This is a pertinent topic … because we had to get rid of quite a bit of the wheat beers that we still had stock of that were brewed back in February. The spoiled taste was reminiscent of vinegar. Our public service announcement this week is to drink your beer in a timely manner!

Eight days ago we brewed our first lager, and to be honest, it had us fairly scared.

This is the lightest beer we have ever planned, which meant that there wasn’t anything to hide behind if we were to make any mistakes (especially ones that cause off flavors). The lagering process was also a contested topic, because we struggle between whether we should have aimed for the quickest (can potentially cause undesirable flavors) or best tasting (slightly slower) procedure. The recommended quantity of yeast was massively larger than anything we’ve done ever! So how has everything turned out so far? Hit the “Continue reading >>” button for the details.

Continue reading

The wonderful people at Beerknews (Flying Saucer’s beer blog) have posted an article about session beers.

They state that there are many definitions out there about session beers, but they think the one provided on beeradvocate.com hits the mark.

Any beer that contains no higher than 5 percent ABV, featuring a balance between malt and hop characters (ingredients) and, typically, a clean finish—a combination of which creates a beer with high drinkability. The purpose of a session beer is to allow a beer drinker to have multiple beers, within a reasonable time period or session, without overwhelming the senses or reaching inappropriate levels of intoxication.

Anyways, get over there an read up on their suggestions for sessionable brews. My current favorite of this style is Easy Jack IPA from Firestone Walker with a close second going to Founder’s All Day IPA. Tell us about your go-to summer beers down below in the comments!

Greetings fellow knurds! Just going to give you a brief update on where our beers are at right now, and then I’ll pass on a fun little read.

The Tri-Hop IPA we brewed in late May is finally getting carbonated. We took our time making sure it was fully fermented and then for good measure decided to dry-hop the 3 kegs with a different hop each. The dry-hops used were the same ones we utilized during the boil. I wish I could tell you how they taste, but we didn’t save any for ourselves while transferring to the carbonation kegs. Come join us for brewing this upcoming weekend if you want to be the first to experience the 3 variants for the first time along with the 3 deviants who brewed it.

Then we have the SMaSH Comet Double IPA, a single malt (standard 2 row) single hop (Comet) beast of a beer. This one is getting cold crashed this week and will be transferred and carbonated over the following week. So far it tastes exactly how we expected from the description of the Comet hop, and that means tons of grapefruit flavor and aroma. We opted to skip any dry-hopping as this one seems to be flavorful enough for any hop-head (what people are called when they really like hoppy beers).

On deck for this coming brew session we have our first ever lager. We really put forth a lot of effort planning this one out, and it really seems to be one that technique is going to be key on getting something crisp and bright. I’m hoping to be enjoying this one before the weather starts getting too cold. I can see this being an amazing tailgating beer!

And lastly, as promised, an article that I am hoping isn’t taking itself too seriously. Joe Kita, of Men’s Health, wrote up the article, “31 Things You Can Do with Beer (Besides Drink It)”. From the look of the list, only a few items seem practical to me. Nevertheless, I have definitely tried a few of these already. Tell us in the comments if you’ve had success with using beer for anything besides drinking.