with the occasional rant about tin openers...

Thursday, October 14, 2010

An Update:

I've opened the Geordie Bitter! After only a couple of weeks it was a fantastic beer. I've used the past tense there, but there is still some left, and I'm trying to leave it alone!

I took a bottle over to Dad in Wales, as he's something of a connoiseur of real ales, and he liked it, I think. Although he said it lacked sparkle, he did manage to drink it all. We were drinking a bottled ale called 'Dandelion Ale' by Badger Organic, and it's much more like the real ale I want to be brewing. I'm going to look into some tasting notes and recipes to see what it takes to produce something more like it - though it will be a lot more complicated than just opening the tin, like I'm used to - and frankly, with our crappy tin opener, that's hard enough!

I recieved a parcel with bungs and bubblers etc in it, so I've been itching to get scrumping for a couple of weeks. Luckily, my need for apples coincided with a wedding over in England we (Girlfriend and I) were going to, so I've brought back a bag-for-life full of apples from Mum's garden. We travelled by car, which was handy, as I doubt the Ryanair baggage restriction would have allowed me to take on that kind of weight!

So I'll be putting a borrowed juicer through it's paces next week, and hopefully end up with a good gallon of cider to comment on come spring. I'll have to be much more patient than I have been so far, but luckily I've got some Triple ready soon. That should take my mind off it.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

On Order

Living in a relatively far flung town, in a similarly distant peninsula of Ireland (it’s not the end of the world, but you can see it) as I do, I have to get my home brew mail order. I’ve written that like it’s a bad thing, but I love getting parcels. Most of the home brew is ordered online, and I really have to like a website, find it easy to navigate and with a good FAQ section before I buy. There’s nothing quite like judging a book by its cover. I don’t know what it is about such beautifully constructed websites, but they have cheaper beer too, I’m sure of it. And my brew always comes out better. Well, alright, maybe not.

But I’m on the prowl again. I might try the John Thompson Bitter this time, and will definitely be doing some early Christmas shopping. I’m thinking about Brewferm’s Christmas beer, or Munton’s Winter Warmer. They prefer a long condition, apparently, being of a higher alcohol content and stronger flavour, I presume, so I will need to start soon. I’ve already started on the mince pies, this year.

It’s nearly autumn (it must be - it feels like christmas), and there are loads of apples just lying about the place, so I've been on the phone to mammy, with polite instructions that on her next trip to Wilkinsons she send over some bungs for the two glass demijohns I found in a charity shop, some champagne yeast and campden tablets.

The plan? To make dynamite cider!

N.B. Whilst scouring the internet for a good home brew website I stumbled across the Chichester Real Ale and Jazz Festival. Two of my favourite things! Now... where did I put that Visa...