First Pilsner and JaDeD Hydra

I’ve been wanting to brew a pilsner from the beginning. Now that I have my brew fridge in place – game on! I’ve patterned the technique off of Brulosophy ( short and shoddy techniques, and the recipe is a 60’s esque American pilsner, but with all west coast hops – I try to keep all my brews ‘west coast’ in origin

My recipe:
4# Pale 2 row
4# Pale 6 row
3# Corn flakes
0.5# Victory malt
1 oz Mt. Hood – first wort
1 oz Mt. Hood – 15′
1 oz Mt. Hood – 1′
Whirlfloc 1/2 tab 15′
WLP 800 in 1L starter

I used the brew in a bag method. Brought water to 155*F (8.25G), mashed the grain ~152*F.  The grain converted in 35 minutes by iodine test – but I let it go another 20 minutes, then heated the mash to 168*F before removing my grain bag. I planned to boil for 60′, but at 45′ I had too much liquid, and too low specific gravity, so I extended to 75 minute boil.

nice boil

JaDeD Hydra wow!

I chilled the wort with my new JaDeD Hydra.  Wow, the hydra is truly amazing. I would guess I used about 20 gallons of water to cool my wort.  I captured the first 10 Gallons in two corny kegs – and used that hot water for clean up. The other 10 gallons watered the yard. Post boil wort measured out at 1.052 (vs 1.056 predicted)

trub, boy, I got trub-bles

.  I pitched the yeast starter at 6pm, and moved the glass carboy to my fermentation chamber.  I have added a 5W light to my fermentation chamber for use in the cold winter months – I had found my chamber was getting too cold while fermenting my annual holiday apple cider.  The wort was bubbling happily the next morning when I woke up.

Brew ON!


Mold in the Keezer – yuk!

I’ve had a recent problem with mold in my keezer. I live in the Sacrameno area – dry in summer, cool – sometimes moist in winter (rainy season). I setup my keezer last summer – no issues. However, over the winter I developed a mold problem. I’ve added a tub of damp rid ( to the keezer. After just 1 day – the smell of mold is gone – let’s see how this works.

Tasty Beer

Racked my Pete’s Wicked Ale clone from secondary to keg and a few bottles.  It is sooooo tasty right now.  Very balanced, but has some of the Pete’s Wicked Ale character to it…with a couple of the changes I made.  This was an all grain batch.  Only concern I have is that the Primary fermentation was warmer than I would have liked – high 70’s vs. mid 60’s.  After 1 week in primary and a little over a week in secondary – I did not pick up any off flavors.  I kegged about 3 gallons, and bottled the rest.   I’m really interested to see if there is any significant flavor difference between the bottled beer and the kegged beer.  My kegged beers have always tasted ‘fresher’ to me, while my bottled beers tend to develop an off flavor after about a month … a taste I cant quite place.  it’s almost like the hop character diminishes more in the bottle than it does in the keg.  First taste should be in a week.

This weekend – I’ll brew some more Pale Ale I think…though I plan to go very pale with it…

Off to my first homebrew club meeting tonight – the Gold Country Homebrew Club in Sacto, then I’ll head to the Hangtown Association of Zymurgy Enthusiasts on Thursday.

Brew On!