Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Whats been brewing with the Freak Brothers?

It' s time to update everyone as to whats been brewing in the last couple of weeks. The first recipe from a couple of weeks ago is a revised Red Cock Ale recipe which is as follows:

Red Cock Ale II (18 gallons)

33 lbs Bries 2 Row Barley
8 lbs Weyerman Munich Malt
3 lbs Carapils Malt
.5 lbs Crystal 80 Malt
.5 lbs Roasted Barley
2 oz Centennial Hops 10.5 aau 90 min
2 oz Cascade Hops 5.9 aau 30 mins
2 oz Fuggles Hops 4.75 aau 5 min
1/2 gallon Fat Tire Ale yeast starter

1.072 OG
40 IBUs
13.3 SRM

This is a remake of the recipe that we served last fall at Freaktoberfest. If all goes well this should be around 7-8% alcohol low hop profile and an ass kicker.

The most recent recipe is a slight change on our oatmeal stout recipe the only change being instead of crystal 60 we substituted dark munich malt, I'm thinking that there shouldn't be a drastic change in the recipe because this beer was fine just as it was, a nice easy drinking stout. I know that we got it right because even Freak was singing it's praises and he's not a big stout guy.
Here is the revised E.F.S.

E.F.S. (18 gallons)

27 lbs Breiss 2 row
3 lbs Weyerman Dark Munich Malt
1.5 lbs Chocolate Malt
1.5 Roasted Barley
3 lbs Flaked Oats
2 oz Chinook Hops 12.9 aau 60 min
2oz Cascade Hops 5.6 aau 15 min
3 11g packets Nottingham Ale Yeast

1.054 OG
38 IBUs

This recipe was brewed last Sunday and will be a welcome addition to my fridge in another 3 weeks or 10 days for Freak. I also need to add that it's not a good idea to drink nothing but HG IPA and Barleywine on brew day, all I can say is that the Change O' Plans IPA will fuck you up! you don't really realize it when your drinking it because you don't notice the alcohol until it's too late, right Freak? Thats all for now, keep on brewing everyone!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Homebrew System of the month

First off, I would like to thank Travis from CNYBrew.com for sharing his brewing setup. I think that this should encourage anyone that is thinking about going all-grain to make the switch. Here is a few pics of his setup along with some links about how he converted a keg for brewing.

Homebrew slideshow
Keg conversion
Tap box

Friday, January 11, 2008

We've shown you ours, now show us yours...

Last night I was down at El Bait Shop (a very cool local pub) for "Jimmy Carter Happy Hour" which is a weekly event where a local homebrewer can bring in his beer for everyone who wants one (or 10) to sample. The beer served was a "Robust Porter" which was very good and a nice American Brown Ale. I also ran into fellow homebrewers from the local homebrew clubs, here in Des Moines, that I haven't seen in quite a while which was good to see but not surprising considering the free beer. This made me realize that there are a lot of brewers out there, some still going strong after decades and some starting their journey right now. We would like to start a "Brewery/Brewer of the Month". To everyone out there, it's time to share with us your brewery whether it's just a 3 gallon brewpot and a bucket (my first system) or a full on 3.5BBL Micro brew setup. Take pride in your setup and send some pics with a description and your brewing background to: freakbrothershomebrew@gmail.com

Keep Freakin' on but not Freakin' out!

PS: Freak, I picked up a bottle of Bourbon County Stout for you.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Let Me Be Perfectly Clear!

One of the things that I am annal about is clarity. The unfortunate thing is that I don't have the will to wait for it. However, I think this is a good example of why you should always do a protein rest. I have always taken the time to do them and it pays off. Send us some photos of your clear beer perfection. We want to see them. By the way, the photo does it no justice. I can see my finger prints and read the computer monitor through it.


P.S. This is a Scottish Export 80

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Share Your Beer!

It appears once again that Freak has gone off the deep end and said something that he has regretted. He has mysteriously disappeared since the original message was posted, there have also been sightings of all black helicopters hovering overhead and unmarked delivery trucks parked across from his house. On a serious note, all invites will be through email correspondence on an exclusive need to know basis. Watch your inbox to find out more.

Freaked out and Freak on!

Is your beer killing you?

I was browsing through the blog circuit this morning and I found this little tidbit from the "kegerator" website, underneath a draft kit for a home fridge.

Most domestic draft beer is not pasteurized, so it must be kept cold. The temperature must be maintained between 36-38°F, and the temperature must be maintained all the way to the faucet. Temperatures above 38°F will cause foam and promote sour/cloudy beer. If the temperature rises above 50-55°F, bacteria growth rapidly begins to spoil flavor and cloud the beer. Simply put, keg beer storage can be compared to milk storage: "If it is not kept cold, it will spoil.""

Wow, I never realized that I had been cheating death for so many years by keeping my keg fridge a nice and constant 50 degrees. Sarcasm aside this got me thinking, If you are a home brewer and have a fridge dedicated for kegs or bottles (you really should keg) you should absolutely get an external temperature controller for your fridge. There are so many good reasons to invest in one, initially I bought mine to make lagers and keep my ales as they should be at 50
-53°. The one I've been using forever is a digital controller used for commercial coolers wired to an extension cord, it allows me to set a temp, and a temp range + or -. Please make the small investment and serve your beer at its proper temp and ignore any advise to chill the hell out your beer, you will notice the difference.

The Freak Brothers, cheating death since the early 90's.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

A New Look at "Freak Brother's" Blog!

As you may have noticed, the videos are gone from our blog. E is going to put up links to a remote site so you will be able to navigate our blog much faster. You will still be able to see the videos once he gets the links up. Be sure to watch them. You will also be able to see, on the side bar, all of the beers that we have made, have on tap and what is coming down the pipe. I hope you all like the new look and please feel free to add a link to our site on your own blog or web page. We will be adding yours to ours!

Freak out and brew on!

The Freak Brothers

Update: Our videos are still on the blog for all to ridicule, they're just archived. They will eventually be moved to google video. To speed things up I've just limited the number of posts shown on the main page.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

The Gremlins Are Gone!

Well Folks! Here it is! The beer from hell. And I don't mean that as a good thing. Nor is it a bad thing. What I am talking about is the big scare followed by a big save. You have all been here and I must tell you all, don't give up. Here is the story of a beer that was almost not.
This is the Scottish Export 80 that got stuck. Well, it ain't stuck any more. This was gonna be a great brew. Then all hell broke loose. Since I bought this system, back in the mid 90's, I have not had to toss out a single batch of beer. Well, this one came close to gettin' poured down the shitter. We used a Scottish ale yeast and it petered out after the beer was half way done. The SG was 1.050. It stuck at 1.024. I was just sick. This was the yeast we planed to use on our Barleywine. I found out that it was stuck the day before we planed to re-pitch. What a bummer. (Speaking of BUM, have you seen the really bad brewer guy on youtube that wears the BUM sweatshirt?) Anyway, we had to shift gears mid-stream. Next thing I knew we were pitching dry yeast into an IPA. The Barleywine did not happen. We will get that one done in a couple of weeks. Anyhow, back to the Export 80. We dumped dry yeast and a yeast nutrient into the beer. We took that shit and shook the crap out of it. We blew CO2 into the bottom of the fermentor to stir it up. We did it all! After a day or so of worrying, it took off again. Ahhhh! Happy times again! After about a week it dropped down to 1.012. In the end we wound up with a great beer. The moral of the story is, relax, don't worry and never give up on a homebrew.

The king of all "BIG" beers...

Last week I stopped at one of my favorite bars, El Bait Shop here in Des Moines (the bar deserves it's own post 100+ micros on tap 100+ bottled...) looking for a barley wine to try, they were out of Bigfoot bw and another that escapes me at the moment. So I ordered a pint of Rouge Ale that was new on tap and very tasty. While enjoying my pint I noticed the Goose Island Bourbon County Stout in the cooler, I'll admit I'm a big fan of Goose Island beer so I had to try it. I ordered the stout and the bartender asks me "are you sure?" which was kind of puzzling at best, I responded "Yeah, don't you like it?" which brought out a long, glowing diatribe ending with "this is the best beer we have in the bar" that's a lot of hype for a beer, could it possibly live up to it? The beer was poured into a brandy snifter like the one pictured in a previous post and the first thing I noticed was very little head, what was there faded quickly. I lifted the glass, slowly inhaled the aroma and took my first taste. It was an explosion of flavors, the first thing that hits you is the alcohol combined with a taste of bourbon, followed by a huge dose of caramelized malt with hints of molasses and a touch of toasted flavor. My God this is a HUGE beer! a King of beers! I was absolutely amazed that a beer could be taken to this level. As I continued to savour the beer, each sip brought more and more flavor. This beer is simply amazing! If your a fan of barley wine or "big" beers I highly recommend trying it, if you can get it your hands on it.