Sunday, April 17, 2011

Two Posts in One Day!

Today went very well. I even managed to get some photos from last week's project.
Below is a couple of pictures of  last weekend's brew day. Last weekend I started an American Amber. It's a partial grain kit from Brewer's Best. I picked it up at small brew shop in Baldwin, Maryland. It was my first time in that store. Was a little hard to find but the staff were friendly and helpful.

Boiling the wort.

Racked to secondary after a week of fermentation.

Here are a couple of images from today's brew with my friend Wes. He brought over a "Lawnmower" Partial grain kit with coriander and orange peel. It was a special from Midwest Supplies. 

Cooling the wort with the low tech method of running cold water in a tub.

 The wort brought to 5 gallons (US) OG of 1.045 at 85 degrees.

Wesley's brother built a wort chiller using copper tubing and an aquarium pump. I've commissioned him to build one for me. Hopefully, I won't be using the low tech method of cooling the wort much longer.


  1. Hello Dan - I have also just started a wine making blog, but on the other side of the Atlantic.

    I'm interested to see that you racked your wine within a week of putting it into the demijohn - I usually wait at least 2 months.

    I should be bottling my Crab Apple wine tomorrow.


  2. Ben,
    Glad to hear from across the pond.
    The reason why I rack my beer and wine over from the primary fermenter after a week or so is to remove the product from the gross lees/trub. An extended stay on the lees can produce off flavors in the wine or beer as the pulp from the grains and or fruit begins to decay.
    Racking to a secondary container such as a carboy/demijohn allows the wine to complete fermentation and reduces the head space as the protective CO2 levels decrease. After primary fermentation the wine or beer becomes susceptible to oxidation. Most primary fermentation vessels have a lot of head space to allow for foaming and expansion during primary fermentation and reducing the head space reduces the risk or oxidation.
    I hope that helps you to understand my reasoning for racking to secondary after about a week or so.
    Feel free to share a link to your making blog. I'd like to check it out.

  3. Hello Dan

    Here it is:

    I also have a blog set up by my publishers, which is less about wine. I write about what strikes me whilst at the computer (for example, a recent posting was about my Hat). However, Sunday's blog will be a repeat - virtually word for word - of my first blog on the above site about Dandelion wine. You can find it here:

    Do check them out and let me know what you think.