Monday, March 19, 2012

Keep it Crispy: Slightly Soured Citra Saison with Peppercorns

Coca-cola my ass! What's missing is a nice porter...
it could be sitting right there...
Battling a drafty house and consuming porter for warmth, I've recently been planning the nice crispy beers I will be drinking to slake my thirst during the summer. Although not a strict votary when it comes to drinking, I do find my year to be divided into two brewing seasons that correspond to my schedule at the university: richer malt-forward beers in late summer, fall and early winter (the "fall semester," in prep for the alcoholic hibernations of winter break); and drier, crisper beers in late winter, spring, and early summer (the "spring semester," gearing up for the horseshoe tournaments and canoe trips of summer).

While mid-winter is made for cast-iron stoves and comfort food, mid-summer (as Shakespeare has taught us) is for free-wheeling adventures and drinking in quantity with reunited friends. It being spring semester, I'm in prep mode for crispy summer drinking.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Enchanted Silver Bullet: Keeping Coors Light Classy

Round about 10 years ago a legendary, now-forgotten, shaman-schwiller of cheap beers introduced me to a method "enchanting" my silver bullets. I have no idea the origin of this spell, nor have I the desire to take the effort to research (google) it. It would be interesting to know if any readers have heard of this technique, so do leave a response. The effect is, well, flavor.

Forgive me Gambrinus, for I have sinned. It has been a thirty-pack since my last confession...

Next stop -- Flavor Country!
I confess that I have a special place in my heart for Coors. I grew into a drinker favoring their Banquet Beer, and still find myself tapping the rockies frequently during summers. I love the aesthetic of their cans, love the feel of a beer-laden koozie in my hand, and never get tired of "silver bullet jokes" (its the only thing that can stop a wook!). I am not claiming that it is the finest beverage on the planet, nor am I attempting to persuade you to become a Coors drinker (honest!). Rather, I am confessing that (for me) there is a time and a place for affordable light beers to be drunk in mass quantities, and Coors fits the bill.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Glüten-Tag! - Malting Buckwheat

In an attempt to design a more "beery" gluten-free beer, the Special Lady-Friend (SLF) and I turned to buckwheat. I first heard about brewing with buckwheat on a Sunday Session podcast on The Brewing Network (an excellent resource for all things brewing), and then followed the directions for malting the buckwheat found on Jon Plise's website. This post is meant to document my process, while providing a redacted step-by-step how-to. Be sure to check out Jon's site for more extensive (and aesthetically pleasing) instructions.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Glüten-Tag!: The Gluten-Free Beer Project

With a recent revelation in my Special Lady-Friend's (hereafter SLF) dietary regimen, I have been provided with another brewing related challenge -- to find and capture the ever elusive tasty gluten-free beer!

You can learn a lot more about gluten sensitivities from websites and blogs by people with far more relevant PhDs after their surnames (see links below), so I will spare you from this pedant's attempt to explain SLF's situation . Just know it sucks, and this dietary limitation is not by her choosing. I'm sure it must be even more torturous living with an obsessed brewer and borderline alcoholic while such a ban is in place. Pause and reflect on a fallen drinking homette next time you are sipping a nice malty brown or IPA -- she would appreciate.

Monday, February 27, 2012

All hail our kombucha overlords!

Kombucha is pretty easy and inexpensive to make, and is supposedly pretty dang healthy. I prefer my homemade kombucha to any of the commercial examples that I have tasted -- it just seems much more flavorful and tart. There are a lot of different recipes and ratios out there in internet land to match different preferences in intensity and balance of flavor. I like mine with a nice acidic tang, and slight carbonation to add a bit of a bittering sensation to the sweeter backdrop of sugars. It can certainly put a pep in my step, even when coffee won't do the trick.