Day 523

No classes today, but no time to snooze! My somnolent black IPA needed to be awakened! The Valentines Day party at the brewery where I worked last summer is this Saturday, and the beer will need a few days in a sealed cask for the yeast to gorge on priming sugar and produce enough CO2 to naturally carbonate the beer. (Of course, if there’s too much priming sugar, the extra pressure will blow the bung out of the cask and send beer far and wide. It’s worrying about these things that keeps brewers awake at night.)

It’s always neat being in the brewery–there’s beer being brewed, and beer being packaged, and people dropping in to say hello, and generally a lot of opportunity for chatting. Although I was there to transfer my beer, at one point I somehow found myself pouring 20-kilo bags of barley into the grain mill.

However, eventually I did do the transfer, and needless to say, I couldn’t just do that without examining it more closely, right?

The colour, I would say, was dark brown rather than black, with a decidedly fruity nose. Although it had received a healthy dose of black pepper, it seems most of the black pepper flavour had perhaps been blown off during fermentation–it had a good mouthfeel, some assertive bitterness, but the pepperiness was around the edges rather than in your face.

Next step: serve it to real customers this Saturday.

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