It has been a while since my last post, I’ve not brewed anything new, but my few bottles of Crafty Fox have been sitting in the dark conditioning. The bottles spent a couple of weeks in the relative warmth of our spare room (under a towel for darkness as I used green bottles); they then went into a cool dark cupboard to clear.
As I was quite impatient, one bottle went into the fridge a week ago to help it clear a bit quicker. This evening we got around to pouring it out and trying it. As this was my first all-grain brew (albeit from a kit) I wasn’t entirely confident about how it was going to turn out.
It turns out there wasn’t too much to worry about 🙂
The beer poured out nice and clear; there was plenty of sediment in the bottom of the bottle which had compacted nicely. Secondary fermentation had gone well, there was plenty of pressure and a nice waft of CO2 exited the bottle when I popped the cap off.
It actually tastes really rather good. It was probably a bit cold straight out of the fridge, as it tasted better as it warmed up. I think it is a little bit too bitter; I guess I dry hopped a bit too early, but it’s nothing that would put me off of drinking it. The kit is noted on homebrewonline as being similar to Brew Dog’s Punk IPA and I’d say it was pretty close. I’ve no idea how strong it is as I forgot to take a final gravity reading before I bottled – I’m not sure it really matters though.
I’ve made a few notes for next time for improvements:
- Use a different pan for boiling (now bought) to hopefully get the temperature up a bit more efficiently
- Dry hop slightly later
- Remember to take a FG reading!
- Purchase an auto syphon to save pouring beer all over the floor
- Decant to a bucket or keg with a tap and use a bottling attachment from here to bottle
I’m pretty please with how this has turned out – I think I’ll try a couple more of these kits until I’m a bit more confident and I spill slightly less, and then after that I’ll have a go at starting from scratch. I’ll be recommending the kits to anyone that wants to give all-grain brewing a go. I’m sure I made plenty of mistakes but I still got a good result – it can only be better if everything goes well.
In the meantime, I’ve found a couple of old cans of malt extract, which I’ll get into a fermenter soon with some fresh yeast to see what happens.