My advise to any homebrewer that is making a big beer or any other for that matter, USE A BLOW OFF TUBE!
As you can see, my beer is all over the room. You wonder how this happened, well, I will tell. After the beer is put in the carboy, there is an airlock put on top. The airlock allows air (CO2) to leave, but doesn't allow air into the carboy. But sometimes the airlock can get clogged with foam and where does the CO2 go then? You guessed it, the air builds in the carboy until there is no more room and you have a beer fountain.
Let's back up a bit and I will tell you what we made this time.
The Barleywine we made a few months ago has been in the secondary for 2 months and it has really smoothed out. I transferred it in to my oak barrel to add some oaky goodness to it and it will be bottled within a couple of weeks. The wheat beer we made last week went into that carboy and I have some super juiced up yeast for the next brew, which is a Russian Imperial Stout.
The last couple of years of brewing has really helped me to start planning ahead with beer making. I have learned that you can't make a beer and always have it ready as soon as it is done fermenting. So Tony and I are making a Russian Imperial Stout in preparation of the winter season. We were planning on making this a big beer, but it looks like it will be more of an ok beer.
We missed our original gravity a little, so we will not have the super Imperial Stout that we wanted. We basically found a couple of established recipes that we could relate to and put our own little twist to it. This will be a little experiment for us as well because we are using some grains we have never used before and are interested in seeing what happens. For example, we used Carafa in place of chocolate malts. Carafa is supposed to have a smoother flavor, but also have that roasted flavor you would get from chocolate grain. From what I can smell of the beer, it will taste fine. I can't wait to see how it turns out.
So, now that the blog is up to date, I guess I have a bit of cleaning to do... so if you would excuse me, I will be scrubbing the walls.
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