By Saturday I'd been snowed in for five days.
So I did what any reasonable person would do: I made beer. I cracked out one of my Brewer's Best ingredient kits and cooked up a 5 gallon batch of Red Ale. I'd made this recipe once before and was happy with the result.
Brewer's Best describes the beer thusly:
A medium-light bodied ale with a deep red hue. Our Red Ale is smooth and easy drinking. Nice balance of caramel malts and specialty grains. Low hop bitterness. IBUs: 19 - 23 ABV: 5.0% - 5.5%
The process was pretty uneventful. My electric range doesn't get hot enough to cause a boil-over with 2.5 gallons of wort, so I was finally able to get caught up on my email. During the brewing process I finished off the last of my Pumpkin Spice Porter, which I'd made around Christmas (I was supposed to make it in October, but I've been busy).
I took an OG reading once the wort was in the fermentor and I got a reading of 1.050- smack in the middle of the recommended OG (1.048-1.052).
Now sealed and in my closet, I'm happy to report my beer is steadily percolating away in the darkness. it'll probably be about a week and a half before I get around to bottling it. Until then I have a whole closet of homebrewed cream ale to tide me over.
I can't forget to give a shoutout to my friends at Bull City Homebrew who sold me the kit and are always a blast to hangout with!
Here's hoping the Red Ale turns out alright1 Cheers!
UPDATE: Bottling Day
My, how the weather has changed since the day I brewed this beer:
On Sunday when I bottle my red ale it was 65 degrees and sunny. I should have been outside enjoying the weather, but instead I was in the kitchen bottling beer. I regret nothing.
My Final Gravity was 1.012 (suggested range: 1.011 - 1.015), giving me an ABV of 5%. I'm very pleased with this, since the last few batches I've brewed have had surprisingly low ABVs (3% - 4%) that I couldn't explain since they were also kits and I'd followed the recipes perfectly.
The bottling process took a few hours, but I had plenty of brews left from my last batch so I took my time. I'd also thought ahead and removed the labels from all the bottles I needed a few weeks ago, so all they needed was a quick wash and a sani-rinse.
But now the bottles are capped and carbonating in the closet. I'll post a taste test in a week or two to let you know how it turned out.