First Batch of Brew: From Fermenting to Drinking
When I’m checking on my brew — daily — my wife always asks: “How’s your girlfriend doing?” I might be a bit obsessed but I really haven’t been this passionate about anything (other than my wife) in quite some time.
I’m really excited about the prospect of drinking something I made, and I’m looking forward to the creative outlet the hobby should afford me once I get a few batches under my belt.
I left the carboy in the kitchen for a week before transferring it to a secondary fermenter. It sat in there for another week before I couldn’t wait any longer (and the gravity had stabilized) and I scheduled a bottling day.
I took a Friday off work, not to bottle beer specifically, but it made for a good day to do it. I did my due diligence in sanitizing 48 standard 12-ounce brown glass bottles. It took a while but I didn’t want to come this far and start cutting corners now.
Again, the process of filling the bottles went off without a hitch. Very little beer was spilled and I ended up filling all the bottles I purchased with not much beer left in the bottling bucket. Success!
Now we’re back to the waiting game. This time I decided to store the beers in the first-floor utility closet. It averages about 72 degrees during the day and it’s dark.
I let the bottles condition for a week and on the seventh day I put one in the refrigerator. The familiar — albeit faint — “psst” sound emanated from the bottle. One of my greatest fears was that the 48 bottles wouldn’t carbonate.
It appears that they are carbonating, but they’re not quite there yet. I decided to let them sit in the closet for another week before testing a second bottle.
But I didn’t waste the initial bottle. It tasted decent, though a little flat. I think another week or two will result in a satisfactory first batch.
And that’s really all I was hoping for on the maiden voyage.
On bottling day I ordered my second extract kit from Northern Brewer. This time I chose the American Amber, which is probably my favorite style of beer. Brew Day No. 2 coming up!