THE BEER GUNNER

THE BEER GUNNER

Grains. Hops. Water. Yeast.

Just another afternoon drinking delicious local lagers in historic Nassau brewery lagering tunnels from the 1860s. 

Welcome to Brooklyn KBS!

Welcome to Brooklyn KBS!

Electric Amarillo Pale Ale

A few months ago Midwest Supplies was cool enough to contact me and ask if I would review one of their beer recipe kits. After looking through their wide selection of available styles- available in both all grain and extract with yeast type and grain crushing options - I decided the Amarillo Pale Ale all grain kit with Wyeast Northwest Ale 1332 would be perfect for the spring weather.  A few days later the kit was on my doorstep with all the ingredients necessary to brew a great batch of beer and a detailed recipe. Included in the kit was the following:

10 lb crushed 2-Row  8 oz. Carapils, 8 oz. Caramel 40L specialty grains, 1/2 oz. Columbus, 2 oz. Amarillo hops, priming sugar, muslin bag and yeast

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That night I made a 1 liter starter with the Northwest Ale yeast and looked over the hop bill for the recipe which had the following directions:

Add 1/2 oz Columbus bittering hops (half the bag) and boil for 60 minutes for optimal hop utilization. After boiling for 40 minutes add 1 oz Amarillo flavor hops. Boil for 20 minutes then add 1 oz Amarillo aroma hops and remove the kettle from the heat.

While I thought this was a great base for the hop bill I decided I wanted to add a few more hop additions to the boil and purchase some more Amarillo hops for dry-hopping as well.  Unfortunately my local homebrewing store was out of Amarillo, so I decided to dry hop using 1 oz each of Centennial, Citra, and Mosaic hops. Also, since I keg my beers I decided to throw the 5 oz of priming sugar (dextrose) to the boil to add a little bit of gravity and dry the beer out a little bit more. 

Here is my final recipe for those interested:

OG 1.050
FG 1.012
IBU - 26
ABV 5%

Grain
10 lb 2 row
8 oz carapils
8 oz cararamel 40L
5 oz corn sugar (dextrose)
Hops 
.5 oz Columbus at 60 minutes
.33 oz Amarillo at 15 minutes
.33 oz Amarillo at 5 minutes
.33 oz Amarillo at 1 minute
1 oz Amarillo at turn off
Dry hop - 1 oz mosaic, 1 oz centennial, 1 oz citra, 1/2 oz columbus
I usually add 1 oz of mixed hops every 2 days for 8 days for dry hopping schedule- wanted to use amarillo but my homebrew store was out of it
Yeast
Wyeast 1332 Northwest Ale
Single Step Infusion at 151 degrees for 60 minutes

The Results
After fermentation and dry-hopping I transferred this beer to the keezer and carbonated for a week. As of now this beer is almost gone and everyone has really enjoyed the citrus and tropical aroma and flavor, the beautiful bright blonde color, the dry character, moderate bitterness, and immense drinkability. It is very easy to drink several of these beers and keep reaching for more. 
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Final Verdict

The Amarillo Pale Ale recipe kit from Midwest Brewing is a great kit that I would highly recommend to any homebrewer from novice to award winner. With a few small recipe tweaks to fit my palatte and available ingredients, I am quite pleased with the results and would happily make this beer again. 
Pros- great service, yeast options, grain crushing options, front door delivery, quality ingredients, easy to understand directions
Cons- liquid yeast viability dates could be old, dry hopping not included in recipe or ingredients

My keezer is finally finished. Many thanks to Billy at BillyBrew.com for the awesome tutorial and my buddy Tim for helping me build the collar.

My keezer is finally finished. Many thanks to Billy at BillyBrew.com for the awesome tutorial and my buddy Tim for helping me build the collar.

birthday beers

birthday beers

The keezer collar is almost complete. The taps are in the mail and the woodstain is almost dry…

The keezer collar is almost complete. The taps are in the mail and the woodstain is almost dry…

On April the 28th, twenty-five homebrewers at Public Assembly in Williamsburg shared their brews with the public in the biannual Brooklyn Wort 2012 homebrew competition.  The competition has been organized by Brooklyn Homebrew and Sycamore bar since 2009 and has steadily been growing in size and stature.  This year all potential participants were required to submit a beer in a preliminary round before being selected to participate in the main event. There were over 125 entries to get one of the 25 spots. 

I was lucky enough to be one of the brewers selected to share their beer at the event. It was a lot of fun meeting other brewers, sampling beers (hoppy ipa’s, chile beers, funky beers, belgian beers, etc), and getting feedback from both the public and a group of judges including brewers (Sixpoint, Brooklyn Brewery, Kelso, Carton), distributors, and bar owners. A lot of people said they really enjoyed my Lupulin Lager- a hoppy lager with big hop aromas and a nice smooth finish - and I got pretty good scores from the judges (average of 36 out of 50), but I did not place in either of the two categories- people’s choice and judges choice- however I was just happy to be there among all the creative homebrewers. 

Congratulations to all the brewers that won…and many thanks to all the judges and Brooklyn Homebrew and Sycamore for putting on a really fun and unique event.

Hopefully I’ll be back next time.

My new homebrew labels. What do you think?

My new homebrew labels. What do you think?

Rule changes to cost New York breweries millions

brewyork:

A ruling last month in a lawsuit that an out-of-state beer importer brought against the New York State Liquor Authority has ended a major tax and fee exemption for small brewers in the state, which will cost them millions of dollars in previously-waived costs.

The lawsuit was filed by Massachusetts-based Shelton Brothers in the wake of the SLA’s rejection of a handful of Ridgeway beer labels in 2006 on the grounds that they would appeal to underage drinkers. The importer claimed First Amendment rights were violated by the Authority’s censorship of the labels, but then went one step further to also challenge the Constitutionality of the Authority’s label registration fees and excise taxes, which were levied for all out-of-state brewers and waived for small in-state brewers.

To resolve the lawsuit, the State Liquor Authority issued new rules [PDF] two weeks ago that lifted the 12-year old excise tax exemption, which applied to the first 200,000 barrels of beer brewed by in-state brewers. Since all but two in-state brewers brew less than that amount, nearly every drop of beer brewed by a New York craft brewery was previously not taxed by the state. It now will be, effective immediately, and retroactive to March 28th. In addition, the authority has re-imposed the $150 label registration fee that was previously waived on in-state batches of beer smaller than 1,500 barrels. Many of New York’s smallest brewers will be subject to this fee for the first time.

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