So I bottled my first home brew today! Now that I’ve had 2 weeks to read a little bit more about home brewing, I have some thoughts and questions on the whole process.
Boiling for an hour on the kitchen stove was messy. I bought an 8 quart (2 gallon) stainless steel pot to cook for my 1 gallon small batch starter kit. Until i had the stove dialing in just right, I had to stay on top of it to prevent boil-over. The fan above my stove didn’t do too much to keep the cupboards above from becoming pretty messy. A burner that I could use in my garage would be nice. A larger pot would have been nice as well.
After the boiling part was done, I put my pot in the sink full of ice and water. It sat there for some amount of time before I used the siphon to move it to a 1 gallon glass carboy. I never checked the temperature at any time. Based on what I’ve read since then, I assume it was too hot when I added the yeast. A built in thermometer on the pot and immersion wort chiller would have been nice.
The auto siphon that came with my starter kit was messy, especially during the bottling process today. Both times when the source container was getting low, the siphon would quit working. I would manually pump it to get some more liquid, but ended up dumping out an inch or so of liquid each time then I couldn’t get the siphon to do much more. It felt like a big waste. The pots with a ball valve on the bottom looked really nice. Based on what I saw on the bottom of my carboy today I’m guessing you can’t get a fermenter with something like that, so you don’t have to use a siphon? That would be quite nice too.
I reused old 12oz beer bottles. I ended up filling 7 bottles of beer today. One gallon is 128 oz which would fill 10 bottles. I don’t expect that there is no waste, but do hope that my 1 gallon recipes will end up giving me a couple more than 7. Is that something that will happen as I become more efficient with the siphoning process?
I’ve got a Dead Ringer IPA that I think I’ll brew next weekend. I’m both excited about it, and worried that I might potentially ruin a good batch of beer.