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Archive for the ‘Bitter’ Category

So, 3 days after I kicked off the Sherwood Forest Bitter, it is time to add the bag of hops. I stupidly added them before taking a picture, but it was basically a small seal bag, about the size of a couple of postage stamps next to each other, full of what looked like a dark cat litter – mmm, nice.

I sprinkled the contents into the beer and, having poured boiling hot water over the stirrer, I stirred them in. Initially, they mostly stayed on the surface, but I’m sure I recall reading that aerating the wort during the early stages of fermentation is not a problem, so I made my best effort to stir them all off the surface. Job done. Hopefully this will add a little more flavour to the final beer.

Prior to adding the hops, I did take a gravity reading:

I took the reading as being about 1.020 – not too bad after 3 days. I will now leave it for at least another 3 or 4 days before taking another reading. I am now keen to not leave any brews for more than a few days once fermentation has stopped.

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After bottling the stout I took a trip to the homebrew shop while the fermentation bucket was soaking. I had intended to buy a lager style beer ready for the summer, but for no reason at all the missus pointed this box out so I figured – why not. I am keen, for now at least, to stick to two tin kits where no sugar is required.

The kit didn’t take long to get going. I emptied the two tins into the bucket and added a kettle and a half of boiling water to the bucket, via the tins to rinse them out. I stirred this for some time until all the wort was dissolved. I then filled up the rest of the bucket with cold water, before checking the temperature, and then adding the yeast. This again became very lumpy, but with another really good stir they finally all broke down. I popped the top on the bucket and carried it into the brewery.

In 3 days time I will add the hops. There were two options for adding the hops – either boil it to add extra bitterness, or simply add it to the wort on day three. Given the amount of home brewing I had done by this point I went for the easy option. It will be interesting to see how this comes out, and whether it misses a bit of bite.

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