Monthly Archives: December 2011

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all my readers!

A very quiet day here while I wait for the turkey to roast. Daughters are at their aunt’s. My wife is napping and reading alternately. I’m enjoying two of my favourite things, beer and sudoku.

I wish you and yours all the best that the season may bring.

Xmas beer and sudoku... Joy.

Scored a prize!

Submissions at Alan’s photo contest over at A Good Beer Blog have ended and prizes are being awarded. I’m thrilled to announce that I won a prize for this photo:


I have won a one year subscription to Taps magazine for “capturing glow”.

There is still the grand prize to be awarded in the contest but I’m not holding my breath. I’m not sure if winning an earlier prize takes me out of the running for the biggie but there were a lot of nice photos submitted so we’ll just wait and see. It should be announced later today.

Lesson learned.

Was sitting and practicing yesterday when I heard a rather loud pop! from the “brewery” in the basement. Never a good sign. Went in to have a look and found this:

Exploded gallon of cider.

Not sure if the picture really does it justice but the jug is completely broken and the contents are all over the inside of the box.

What was originally in there was a gallon of fermented apple cider in secondary on pomegranate seeds. The lid was on it because I had run out of air locks but was venting the jug every so often. Apparently it needed just one more vent. ­čśÇ

Lesson learned? Don’t use the one gallon jugs or growlers for fermentation without airlocks. Don’t even use them for bottle conditioning, it’s not worth the risk. I did have all the jugs in the cardboard box just in the event of this happening… and it did.

Random bits.

Almost a welly.

Nothing major to post about at this point in time, just a few odds and ends.

Saw the above image on my back deck last week and had to snap a quick photo. We keep a pair of wellies on the back deck to put on when we go outside. We’re housebreaking a puppy currently so they come in handy several times a day. One had fallen over and a light dusting of snow had started and caused the image you see above.

Brewed commercially twice last week and had a great brew day on the second brew. Text book. I do like it when that happens.

Brewing tomorrow with my friend, Scott. Rent beer, nothing special.

Fin de la Saison got transferred last week and is gassing up now. Should be ready to bottle on the weekend or early next week. Just that one transfer has freed up a bit of space in my basement and in fermenters that it will allow me to brew tomorrow. Good stuff!

I have some product shots to do for Grand River Brewing this week for their website. Updating all the shots here with the new labels.

The beer advent calendar started last week so I have been enjoying several different kinds of beer over the last few days. Certainly stuff that I wouldn’t brew on my own but all good! Getting some good ideas for second tap brews coming up.



New toy!

My wonderful, caring wife was wondering what to get me for my birthday a couple of weeks ago. She wanted to get me some brewing gear but so much of it is specialized and tricky to find if you don’t know where you’re looking or what you’re looking for. She asked for a list with items and sites etc. and I complied with the usual assortment of books and gear and everything was fine.

In one of my commercial brew days shortly before my birthday I ended up using the brewery’s refractometer because the brew house hydrometer was broken. A light bulb went on in my head: This would make a great birthday present! I had heard that ebay has refractometers that are shipping from Hong Kong at very reasonable prices. I looked one up and found a Brix/SG refractometer from a company in Hong Kong for only $17 plus $7 shipping. Done and done!

The package arrived yesterday with everything in order and ready to go. I have to do a bit of playing and calibrating to figure it out but I think I’m up to the task.

Time to play!

Refractometer fun!