Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Bottling Wheat Beer, July 12th, 2011

After waiting patiently for two weeks, it is finally time to bottle "Pancho Villa", our first beer. Having heard that brewing a wheat beer is pretty tough from a neighbor at a party the past week, we were pretty nervous about our little experiment. He mentioned that there is a lot of possibilities for off flavors and that the proper technique is to hop the beer to death. I don't know much about that, but it sounds to me like the words of a hop-head. 

Sweet, sweet success.

Despite our fears, the beer turned out surprising well. It didn't have any weird to strange flavors that might develop from a bacteria infection and there was no over powering bitterness from the Autolysis, the bane-of-beers. It had the slight sweet taste that is the trademark of a wheat beer. so we were very happy. 

Bottling Pancho Villa was the same process as bottling El Dorado (our hard cider), but we changed it up a little. We primed the beer in a better fashion, and we didn't use the assembly line format to speed things up. 

Work faster!
So instead of taking you through the bottling process again, I'll describe what we did differently and include pictures.


#1. Priming Method: Instead of pouring small portions of the priming solution (a solution of sugar and what used to carbonate the beer in the bottle), we poured the solution directly into the beer to get and even distribution. 

Ignore the grodiness on the sides.

#2. No Assembly Line. That's right. Despite what you may have learned, an assembly line does not always mean faster production, especially when there are only two people and the assembly line for a certain job requires a few more. So we sanitized all the bottles, then we filled them all with beer, then we bottled them all. It was a lot faster. 

Bottled with love.

The empty bottles waiting eagerly to be filled with brew.
And that's about it for the changes. We had a yield of 54 bottles, slightly more than my prediction of two cases, but that is completely fine with me.

This should be on dirtiest jobs or some show. 

Tube looks cool. Am I right? Thanks Mr. Siphon for inventing the siphon.

Just wish I could drink it now. But patience is a virtue, or so they say.

The dredges. Very nasty. But at least it's at the bottom and not in your beer.

This will hold us for a while. Until we make the next batch

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