Beery Goodness

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

I sometimes have to remember that I started this bloggity to be a beer blog, along with politics. Beer has taken a slight back seat to politics, but with complete and utter bullshit like this out there, it's hard not to write about it and shake my sword at the abyss.

A week or so ago, I mentioned I ordered a big upgrade to my brewing apparatus. It's time, folks, as my 2 existing kegs begin to drain, to put it to good use.

I feel weird about it, but I'm cheating. I am buying 2 highly-recommended all-grain kits from Northern Brewer. I normally like to formulate my own recipes, given them a trial run, make a tweak or two, and consider a good recipe developed. But the process of all-grain brewing is longer and a few steps more complicated. Maybe complicated isn't the right word, because all I am doing is pouring hot water over grain a couple times and straining it into a big pot. But it adds a few more steps that a beginner at the process could fuck up by not paying a hint of attention. So I bought the kits, and can follow a tried-and-true recipe from start to finish, using every new step along the way, and will have an idea of how the beer should taste versus how it ends up tasting.

I ordered Northern Brewer's American Wheat Ale kit and their Caribou Slobber kit, which is a clone of Big Sky Brewing Company's massively-famous Moose Drool. So, classic Oberon as we Michiganians knew it when it was better, and a highly-coveted big American Brown Ale. Here we go.

Speaking of making my own recipes, I just obtained an iPad app specifically for homebrewers: iBrewMaster. Oh, sweet motherload of beery calculating heaven. This app has it all. It has pre-installed recipes for you to test and tweak. You can write you own. Keep track of batches, suppliers, test what a particular adjunct may do to your beer (licorice? honey?), and even share recipes over an iBrewMaster community. If you brew, extract and/or all-grain, this app is so user-friendly and comprehensive that it's like it was built from the ground-up by homebrewers who would know exactly what they'd want in brewing software. Oh...wait...

Oh, I can't help it. More awesome screenshots from the app. It's like brewer porn.

I stumbled across an iPhone app that pulled at my heartstrings. No, it's not this. It's BrewVault. It keeps track of the beers in my fridge, the beers I am cellaring, the beers I keep meaning to buy, beers I've tasted at a bar and want to purchase later elsewhere...all of that and more. It organizes by state, by brewery, by type. It allows me to add tasting notes, which helps my reviews, especially if I am at a bar and am like "oh man, I need to review this beer" but don't have a pen and a cocktail napkin. Now I have BrewVault! Check out its cool features.

The path to sudsy goodness resides in awesome iOS apps.


Bob 4:27 PM  

In other racist/politics related news, David Duke is considering a run for President.

Maybe he wants to make Bachmann look like a moderate, tolerant Rebulican. Duke says the Tea Party folks are asking him to run. I am shocked.

On the beer front - I may need to get an iPhone just so I can get BrewVault.

Smitty 3:55 PM  

My beer cellar and fridge, as they are, aren't nearly as impressive as some people's; I tend to buy mine and drink them rather than hang onto them dearly, unless I know it is a style or particular beer that is recommends aging/conditioning (like Stone's RIS).

But tasting notes and the "want" list functions are my personal highlights for this app.

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