Last year for Father's Day, I wanted to get something that my husband and dad would both enjoy to do together. Hmmm.... They get along well...and both appreciate a good beer. So, I decided to get them a gift certificate to The Home Brew Outlet. Although brewing took a backseat to more important things last year, they ended up getting together a couple months ago to work on it.
My dad used to brew and enjoyed it. A little of this, a little of that-and voila! You know, the good stuff. What he didn't remember was how much time and tending it takes. And since he lives a ways away, doing it together just wasn't gonna work. While I was a little disappointed, my two awesome men seemed cool with it. Before my dad left that day, he helped get the supplies ready...
...and told a hilarious story about sampling the compressed hops.
The moral of the story is...don't do it! You'll never get the taste off your tongue!
My dad left, and my husband happily assumed the role of mad scientist! He sterilized the brew water and then began the wort. He added malted barley and let it cook. The house smelled sooo pungent and good!
Then he added the sugar and malt syrup and cooked it some more. All this sterilizing and cooking is what took the longest time that first day.
My hubby then cooled the wort quickly and siphoned it into the fermentor. He topped it off with sterilized water, added the yeast, and aerated. Now we were to wait for it to do its magic for a couple weeks.
So we waited. And watched. Later the next day the percolator announced that something was happening. (Sorry I couldn't rotate this video. You'll just have to imagine that you've had a few too many ales!)
And a couple days later we could see massive churning in the carboy.
We were making beer! This was very exciting (even though I prefer tequila)!
The tedious part now lay ahead of us: sanitizing everything.
My husband and I washed the bottles...
...then bleached them...
...then thoroughly rinsed them.
That's a lot of bottles! I'll refrain from singing that boisterous, back of the schoolbus song that you know you sang as a kid! Woa-ah-ah!
My little creamy shadow thought this was all very interesting, though!
After fermenting for two weeks, it was time to round 'er up! My husband transferred the beer to the bottling container and added the priming sugar. I gently stirred, as he bottled.
Then he capped them all and let them sit for two more weeks.
When they were done, we split the beer between us and my dad. And then, well, I'm sorry to report, the beer fairy must have come and drank it all, because I don't have any pictures of the finished product! (I wonder if that happened to my dad, too?)
Next Father's Day-a kegerator!