I had been looking forward to this day for several weeks now. Before I left for work this morning, I popped two of my bottles homebrewed beer into the fridge after the whole batch of seven and a half bottles had been sitting in the kitchen cabinet for two weeks following bottling and capping. Today was a Wednesday, which means it was my “long day” at work. When it was finally time to leave work, I was amped up. I knew in just a short time I’d finally be tasting my first homebrewed beer.
For some background, my brother bought this Brooklyn Brew Shop Chocolate Maple Porter kit for me for Christmas of 2016. I started my whole brewing experience at the end of January and had been anxiously waiting to see how it turned out for several weeks now. To put things in perspective, the brew process all went mostly as planned except for when I began primary fermentation. For some reason I misread the instructions and pushed my blow-off tube too deep into my fermenter causing some of my wort to escape out of my blow-off tube and into the bowl of sanitizing solution that I had at the end of it. I thought for sure that might cause some issues – in fact it did, kind of, because I ended up with about a 3/4 gallon batch rather than the full gallon batch that I had been shooting for. I corrected my mistake and continued the rest of the way without any major hiccups and even went ahead with making a second batch of beer after bottling my first batch (see my previous article for more details!). But then came the moment of truth: was the beer going to taste good?
I cracked open two bottles: one for myself which I poured into a beer glass and the other for my wife which I left in the bottle. I smelled both of them deeply and then tried them both – let me tell you both of these beers are delicious! I’m so glad they came out so tasty. Not trying to talk myself up, but they honestly taste like they could have been professionally done. I love them so much that I definitely could see this being a long-standing hobby of mine. The one that I left in the bottle to drink seemingly tastes better to me than the one I poured into a glass, but I’m not sure if that’s just psychological.
For me the real excitement comes from the second batch I made, which I’m currently waiting another a few days to begin bottling. While the first batch makes me extremely proud since it came out so well for a first batch, the second batch was primarily my own brainchild. See, with the Brooklyn Brew Shop kits, the ingredients, yeast, and hops all come along with the packaging, which really takes out a lot of the experimentation and guesswork that you’d have to use if you were shopping for your ingredients and equipment on your own. With the second batch, I used Beersmith for a blueprint of a good recipe but then tinkered with it on my own to replace certain ingredients that I wasn’t able to find at my homebrew outlet or that I didn’t think would taste as well as the ones I settled on. If my second batch comes out great, I’d be even more proud of it than my first one.
One thing’s for certain: now that I know that I enjoy my own homebrews, I’ll be purchasing a larger carboy to make larger batches at a time so that I always have a continuous supply of homebrew right in my kitchen. I will keep you all posted with my progress!!