Brewhouse BlogIndependent. Brewer Owned. Brewing What We Like to Drink.

Baby Steps - On Ice

January 26, 2009

We seem to be having a real Winter this year, and things are again "progressing" slower than I would like. A busted pipe reminded me that the equipment isn't too happy with the sub-freezing temperatures. (Unlike the fermentation room, my little brewhouse is unheated.) Couple that with the fact that this is a small-scale, part-time endeavor (brewing on weekends or days where I can play hooky from work), the beer isn't flowing out too rapidly at present. As warmer weekends approach, so will new batches of beer.

Meanwhile some Weizenbock should be out early February.

I'll be kicking the smoke up a notch with the next batch of Hellsmoke Porter. The earlier homebrew version was a lot smokier than what was available to folks in December's "First Flight", but I seemed to be the only one who was happy with the homebrew level of smoke. Perhaps I brought the smoke level down too much. A good number of RateBeer / BeerAdvocate reviewers indicated that they would like more smoke, so I'll try to find a happy balance between the old homebrew smoke and that of the December release. Not too much to overwhelm the senses, but a bit more smoke seems to be called for.

The Severest Critics of All

January 19, 2009

While the Hellsmoke Porter has been receiving decent reviews on RateBeer and BeerAdvocate, the two cows at the old Lewis-Oliver Dairy in Northport haven't been taking at all to the last batch of spent grains from the Wheatley Hills Weizenbock. So, at least for the mix of spent wheat and barley, it's off to the compost.

Was too wintery to brew the next batch of Hellsmoke Porter this weekend (not just for me, but more importantly, for the equipment as the brewery currently needs to be set up). Please check back for news on that.

Hellsmoke Spotted in Manhattan

January 11, 2009

I'm not sure how it got there, but I just got word from one of the folks signed up for my email updates that they came across (and purchased) some of the Hellsmoke Porter in New Beer Distributors in lower Manhattan.

More Weizenbock

January 6, 2009

Took a day off from the regular job to brew more Weizenbock, but it turned out to be a bit longer of a day (into night) than expected. So, we missed getting to last night's Friends of the Farm meeting in nearby Northport. I will be getting more spent grains to the cows later this week, though, "leftovers" from yesterday's brew session.

Next to brew: More of the Hellsmoke Porter.

Feeding Time (Yeast and Cows)

January 2, 2009

I've had some good feedback on the Hellsmoke Porter, and will be smoking and brewing up more soon. If you have had some, and haven't yet shared what you thought of it, please do -- either via the "Be the Judge" form on, or on Beer Advocate or RateBeer (or all three). I truly appreciate honest criticism. (And thanks to those who have given feedback.)

Meanwhile, back in the Fermentation Room, the yeast is happily eating the sugars, creating alcohol and carbon dioxide to make the wort into Wheatley Hills Weizenbock.

I finally got the spent grains to the cows in nearby Northport (no one was a the old dairy when I went on Sunday). If you have kids and happen to be near Northport, some free family fun can be had at the old Lewis Oliver Farm in Northport. They've got two cows ("Sassy" and "Half-Pint"), as well as some chickens, ducks, geese, and a pig. For more information check out the Friends of the Farm blog at

Image of Cows eating spent grain in Northport

The farm happens to be looking for volunteers. If you are free, they are having a meeting at the farm at 7:30 this coming Monday night (January 5, 2009).

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