Not Using My Normal Methods.


I was out back …. working on cutting cardboard dividers to store empty beer bottles and I had another little idea over the weekend. What if I didn’t have my propane burners or my electric brewer and had to limit myself to simpler means to brew a rustic frontier beer. What it be any good? Heating my water on charcoal or on a open fire. How would I cool my boiling temp beer wort wehn it was ready? Whole hops and no pellets. Hand cranked my mill instead of the cordless drill. I didn’t run my water through my normal filtration methods. No gypsum or calcium chloride on the sparge wash. My city was decent water, part of it is well water. It’s been said,  “if your water is oood enough to drink, it’s good enough to make beer.” What would be allowed for my little project and what was I not going to use? I decided to give it a go and see what happened.

I invited my father over to my place to help me brewing. Papi is a retired Aerospace engineer and he helped put men on the moon years ago and built the Space Shuttle orbiter. It was fun to spend the time with him and try to figure out how this was all going to go. 

Well … there were a few surprises. I captured some video clips which I will make into a little movie to tell the story. Heating 3 or 4 gallons of water over a smoker BBQ with charcoals and bringing it to boil is not easy. We eventually had to give up this time and break out the propane burner to finish the job and get it into the sink to run my chillers and get it into the fermenter. My Pops was a trooper and I have him a little chilled bottle of white wine to enjoy as we headed towards 3rd plate on our mission. 

I have not given up. I got a few more things to keep working at this idea. Our beer is chugging away in the fermenter at the moment. My secret ingredient in this creation was 16 ounces of maple syrup on top of the simple, single base malt recipe and two types of whole hops I picked up for the brew. I am curious to see how it turns out. I will keep on working on this rustic frontier beer idea and see where it goes.