Batch #21

Batch #21

Wow it’s been a while since we’ve done any brewing.  Being retired really takes a lot of time getting everything done.  But, we’ve found a hole in our schedule that gives us a couple of weeks at home to brew, wait and bottle.

Today’s batch is another Smash Ale but with a little bit of a citrus twist- literally a twist of fresh limes and then some dried tangerines.  Our brewmaster is being creative with this one by adding some wonderful Cuban honey to add just a little extra sweetness.  Hmmmm I’m thinking this may be a little bit sweet and sour on the palate.  It’s a 2 fermentation brew but with each fermentation taking only a week it’ll still only be about 2 weeks and we’ll be ready to bottle.  I’m excited about this one since I do love a wonderful fruity tasting beer, like a shandy.  Oh and the name- Caribe Rompió Cítricos- Caribbean Smashed Citrus! Interpret it as you desire!

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Launch Day!

Launch Day!

It’s been a dream of mine forever to see a space launch. So on Sunday we were planning to go to Cape Canaveral to watch the Space X launch. What a perfect way to end our anniversary/birthday celebration week! Due to mechanical issues it got scrubbed from Sunday to Wednesday. Plan B kicked into place and on Wednesday we packed up the car with our chairs, snacks, drinks, and the 4 of us. Off we headed to our adventure- Disney Springs first for lunch, over to Cocoa Beach and Rn Jon and the launch at 6:34. It rained, and cleared, and rained and cleared and as the sun came out on the beach and we stood their with our binoculars and cameras…. it got scrubbed with 30 sec. Left in the countdown!  Dang! But, we had a blast anyway. So a space launch is still on our FL to do list! 

Batch # 20!

Batch # 20!

It’s brew day today for milestone Batch #20.  It’s hard to believe that we actually have brewed 20 batches of beer, with very few repeats of the same type.  

Today’s brew is a Scottish Ale (yay).  It’s derived from Karl Engebretson (known from Northern Brewers catalog covers, BYO and Zymergy) 90/-shilling.  In between a 90/- and a Wee Heavy.  The 90 meaning it has a 90 minute brew time, during which we could smell the essence of the boozy praline, pecan, sugar and malt.  The hops have a wonderful sweet essence to them and the citrus in the malt lingers deliciously on the tongue.  And the color- a beautiful amber/mahogany darkness that if you are an ale drinker will make your mouth water.   

Since it’s a two fermentation beer it’ll take some patience on this one to wait for bottling day a month after brewing and then another two weeks in the bottle before popping the cap.  Thank goodness for the busyness of the holidays!!!

Oh and the name for our milestone Batch #20- well it has the essence of pralines and pecans, it’s a 90 minute brew and it’s Christmas time-

Noventa Nueces de Navidad del Caribe

Or

Ninety Caribbean Christmas Nuts. 

Update: January 10, 2019

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Bottling day today!  We’ve waited through 2 fermentation cycles- kind of like waiting for Christmas when you have no idea what goodies await!  First blush- a beautiful, dark caramel color similar to mahogany.  First taste- a nice little sweetness that lingers on your tongue with just that little bit of a hit of praline and pecan!  I knew we should’ve brought home some Pralines from New Orleans- what a pairing that would have been!  We even had a little extra bonus and got 50 bottles out of this batch!  2 more weeks in the bottles, a good chill and we’ll be ready for the final taste just in time for some northern company joining us! What a fun holiday brew!

The Big Number One!

The Big Number One!

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Squiggles and snuggles, giggles and goofy faces, babbling and bum bouncing, granddaughters together with hugs and laughter and smooches galore, family gathered celebrating a new milestone, surprise visitor to help celebrate, farm time, horse and buggy rides, food, food, food, little girl laughter and learning new games, hide and seek, grandma and grandpa come play, baby bye byes and words that sound like mom and dad and sit, precious time with family and friends, new memories created to last a lifetime.  God is good and Life is great!

 

Batch #19

Batch #19

Cool breezes, temperature in the mid 60’s, slightly cloudy.  It’s a perfect spring day for brewing in SWFL!  In anticipation for the hot summer coming up, today’s brew is a single malt and single hop style wonder- or as it is known- SMASH.  It’s a combination of a pale ale and an IPA.  An American Session Ale.  Think about when American Pale Ale was edgy and new and combine it with a new-school single hop, Simcoe.  Thoughts and essence of pine and jungle permeate your senses!  At first taste you can taste the pine and the hoppiness of it.  Which will become even more pronounce as it is a two-hop toss fermentation.  We are hoping it will be a nice light, summery refreshing, kick back and enjoy type of brew with a light ABV of 4.5%.   Just a little side note- I headed out for a run while our brewmaster was brewing and when I entered back into the house I encountered the most wonderful aroma!  I wonder if they make candles with this scent?  Just sayin…..

2 weeks till bottling.  Oh and the name!  Caribbean Jungle Smash American Session Ale!  Be back in two weeks on bottling day!

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UPDATE: Last week the second batch of hops were tossed into the brew.  It’s been an anxious 2 weeks waiting to see what the brew will be like.  Will it be too hoppy strong?  What will the ABV be?  Just all kinds of questions have been tossing about in our brewmaster’s brain!  Today it’s been two weeks of fermentation-which makes this…. bottling day!  First look at the brew it has a beautiful golden color, almost like a Florida sunset!  First taste-bold, but not too bold.  Citrusy with a tang of bite and sweet and sour all at the same time!  Absolutely delightful.  The best part is the ABV is a nice 4.73%.  Just right for sipping on our hot summer days in FL, which are already here!  We’ve been trying to pair some of our brews with “what would this taste good with”?  Just as our last one would go good with ice cream (I’m still thinking a nice ice cream float or shake) we decided this would be perfect with a good old fashioned burger on the grill or even pouring a little on one of our smoked pork shoulders!  That’ll be next on our food bucket list!  All in all, the telling will be in the next two weeks of bottle fermentation.  We are thinking it will mellow out even more!

What could be better?

What could be better?

Little girl laughter, playing games, hugs, playing dolls and little girl tea parties, party preparations, the anticipation of a birthday and picking out a new bike! Adorable baby laughter and giggles, army crawling, finding invisible crumbs on the floors, playing with dogs ears and tails, more giggles and funny noises, snuggles, and squiggles. What could be better than weekends with our granddaughters!

Hugs, and laughter. Gathering together for meals filled with incredible Mediterranean, Thai, and home cooked Mexican food, topped off by home baked incredible pop cakes, and chocolate chip/lemon/orange pound cake. Birthday party prep and shopping, dog walks, beer tastings, more laughter, gathering together for the big birthday party, church outreach and 168 palm crosses made for Palm Sunday, more laughter, more beer tastings, relaxing, chilling, movies, more laughter and just enjoying being together. What more could be better than weekends with our 2 sons and daughter-in-loves (my new name for our daughter-in-laws).

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Laughter, hugs, relaxing, sumptuous food, missional outreach, sitting by the fire pit, chatting, relaxing, sipping wine, more laughter, more sumptuous food, off-roading in the country, rummikube tournaments, being together. What could be better than time with wonderful and awesome friends!

We are blessed and our hearts are filled.

And We Have Liftoff!

And We Have Liftoff!

NASA we have had a successful launch at the launch pad birthday! The mission was filled with experimental planet cake pops surrounding Saturn, Galactic Punch, NASA banners, terrestrial tacos with all the fixings, Martian margaritas, a new two-wheel terrain vehicle and a bunch of giggling, new scientists.  The older scientists in the crowd had a blast getting the launch prepared and also enjoyed tons of laughter and hugs from the newest 7 y.o. scientist.  Mission complete!