May 20, 2005

Beers are on me

Not really, but you'd be surprised(okay, maybe not) at how many otherwise dead-to-the-world drunks somehow manage to hear this phrase when you're in a bar. I figured it would work just as well in my blog. Now back to beer.

I like to cook. I like beer. Homebrewing provides me with an opportunity to combine two of my passions into one rather entertaining enterprise.(Note: I've had a batch of homebrew sitting in a secondary fermenter for more than a year without bottling. My wife would have dumped it in a heartbeat if she could lift the carboy.) Add the malt extract(all you all grain snobbish types feel free to shut up now) and the hops to the water, bring it all to a boil, clean up the boil over, bring to a boil again, cool, pitch the yeast, wait, bottle and then drink the finished product. Ahhh. Good stuff.

I enjoy the smell of boiling wort. The aroma of hops and malt fills the house wonderfully. Unfortunately, the chief HATES the smell, and I mean despises it with a passion. She let me brew ONE batch in the house right after we were married and that's it. However, wonderful lady that she is, she gave me a propane cooker so I could brew in the garage, thereby allowing me to continue with my hobby without assaulting her sense of smell.

One side note for budding brewers: be careful with your hop disposal if you use leaf hops(ignore if using pellets). Back in the 1990's, a few cases of toxic hyperthermia in greyhounds were reported after the dogs ate the spent hops. I don't remember if any other dog owners reported similar problems. Cats might also be susceptible, but most don't eat their vegetables. Meat, meat and more meat is their meal of choice. In any event, take the trash out and put in a can with a lid.

The funny thing about beer you've brewed is that you will drink it even if it's not great. Okay, it stinks. A lot. The crappy taste is offset by the pride of having made it yourself. This does not include actual beer disasters. The first cream ale I tried to brew tasted like swamp water minus the mosquitoes, only not as potable. It's the only batch I've ever poured straight down the drain. Wasting 5 gallons of beer would normally be a crime punsihable by flogging, but that batch didn't qualify as beer. Probably could have used it as a chemical weapon.

Good beer is its own reward. That's why I've flown out to Denver 5 years in a row for the GABF, and I'm going there again after a brief hiatus due to the birth of my second child. I highly recommend this trip to others. Free beer(if you volunteer) and a chance to meet other beer lovers. Me too, but that's just a bonus.

Posted by Physics Geek at May 20, 2005 06:36 PM StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble It!

Getting stuffed out in the garage... that's what my wife does to me & my cigars.

Which is fine, since it gives me time for quiet reflection.

Just not a lot of fun in the winter, though :-)

Posted by: Harvey at May 21, 2005 03:14 PM