Zoiglbeir – Fresh Bavarian Lager

2.5 Gallon recipe

3 lbs Pilsner DME, 1lb Munich DME, .5oz Hellertau 60 min boil ( 30 min whirlpool) Bavarian lager yeast

As I have written about technique previously, I won’t go too deep into it with this beer either, but will stay more high level.
A Zoiglbeir is a traditional Bavarian Lager brewed fresh and locally. It is brewed almost farmhouse style in open top fermentor and served at cellar temperatures from the tap house/Pub basement.

This malty lager is fresh and clean tasing with hop and malt complexities. Great spring time or early fall beer.

Bring your 1.5 gallons of water to a boil and add your dry malt extract (DME). Once a slow boil has returned to your wort, add in your hops and cut the heat, stirring almost continuously for 30 minutes with a low IBU hop. We used German Noble Hellertau at .5 oz for this 2.5 gallon batch.

Let wort cool to 70F before throwing in your lager yeast. S-189 works great, but I used Mangrove Jack’s Bavarian Lager yeast this time. Gives a lightly fruity finish to the beer that works well with the spicy hops.

Ferment cool for 1-2 weeks until ferment is complete and then lager (or store in a cool dark place) for 1-3 weeks. Let the beer drop clear before you either bottle condition or force carbonate.

Lastly enjoy a regional specialty not normally seen outside of Bavaria. Prost!

AFD

Brew Day – Christmas “lager” – Sparkling Vienna Amber Lager with seasonal spices.

3 lbs Sparking Amber DME
1lb Caramunich III malt grain
1 oz German Tettnang hops
1 packet M12 Kveik yeast (dry)
Dash Pumpkin Pie spice ( or just nutmeg, allspice, cinnamon, clove)
2 Dash Ground Clove

Bring 1.5 gallons of water and steeping grains up to 185 and remove grain bag.
Whirlpool hops for 10-15 minutes depending on strength you desire.
Remove hop bag and throw in your DME and stir till mixed well.
Add 1 gallon COLD water and stir.
Sprinkle in your spices and stir again.

Let the mix cool to about 90 degrees and move to fermenting vessel.
Pitch yeast and close up fermenter in a warm place. The yeast (kveik) responds well to warmer temperatures and will burn through fermentation. Expect this to be done in 1-1.5 weeks before you can bottle condition or keg. Just in time for Christmas.

I will update when I get this on the gas and show follow up pictures and flavors.

Update #1

3 days in a 72 degree house was all it took for complete fermentation. The taste is malty with light-ish body and a mellow flavor of spices. I am cold crashing now before force carbonation. I am shocked at house aggressive and clean the Kveik yeast is. May be a new standard go to. The hops are a bit strong with peppery and good bitterness for a malt forward beer. Close to Pale Ale IBUs. Once I get it on the gas I will post another update and pictures with final gravity and taste test.

Musings and possibly a book.

First and foremost – happy 600 days of “14 days to flatten the curve.”

I am tired of things not being back to “normal” and the new normal is pretty f*cked up.

That said, it has given us all more time at home with our families if we are lucky. That has been the driving factor behind TVD and our stories, experiences and tidbits of info we provide on the blog and instagram.

I was out blowing leaves and was thinking about the blog and being a start up company/entrepreneurs. We provide a product – this blog and its information that is actionable to not only help you in your life and journey but ours as well.
We are passionate about many things and most are covered here in the blog, but one thing that is a top passion for me, besides my family, is my love of fermentation and home brewing. Now – I would NEVER be good enough to be a professional brewer – there is a lot to learn, and buy to even get close, but I can certainly help others find a love for the art and if they then go on to become pros… so be it.

With that all in mind – I am going to try to WRITE A BOOK! About brewing for people who don’t want to know everything but make solid beverages and develop new skills! Plus it will be for quick and lazy brewing! No day long brew days here!

More to come soon!

1* AFD



Brew Day – Schwarz Bier ( German Black Lager)

Recipe:
1/2 lb Black Malt – milled
1/4 lb Roasted Barley
3 lbs DME Golden Light
2.5 gallons water
1/2 oz Hellertau Mittelfuher hops
S-189 Dry Lager Yeast from Saflager

Process:
Steep grain in bag as 1.5 gallons water heats to 180 F
Pull Grain bag and bring to boil
Mix in DME
Bring to boil then cut heat
Whirlpool hops for 20 minutes, then remove
Add 1 gallon COLD water
Let wort chill to 68-70 degrees then pitch yeast
ferment 1-2 weeks or until complete and cold crash beer for clarity.

Keg or bottle as desired.

I am making this today and will let you know how it turns out in a few days/week!

Update: fermented 5 days then cold crashes for 4 at 40 degrees. Force carb over night and the results are stellar. Flavor of dark roast and barely but light body as should be for a lager.

AFD 1*

Stop drinking so damn much!

I know that sounds like an odd thing to hear coming from me, being I am the one teaching you how to make your own hootch at home, but just because you have it doesn’t mean its a breakfast or lunch item every day.

With the onset of the “pandemic” more people then ever before are drinking more and more. I myself am one of them but I am doing so in a controlled manner. I have rules you see. They are very simple.

1. No booze before noon except for brunch on Saturdays OR Sundays… not both.
2. Avoid hard liquor till the evenings unless mixed with seltzer.
3. No beers except on Saturday OR after cutting the lawn (1 max).
4. Dry alcohol or liquor during the week (2 drinks -3 max a day).
5. You MUST workout before you can have any type of alcoholic beverage. – NON-NEGOTIABLE.

Those rules above will keep you from getting drunk, being a slob, killing your gym gains and efforts, lowering testosterone, getting you fat, and wasting your fucking life by drinking instead of spending quality time with your family.

Listen, alcohol is good and enjoyable, as long as you’re not a lush or all around drunkard. Do you want your kids drinking like you? Do you think they want half-bombed or totally bombed Daddy at their parties or sporting events etc? No they don’t.
Be a better version of yourself.

I love my mead/beer/wine/scotch as much or more than the next guy – but I also don’t want to be an embarrassment and addicted to something that will control me if I let it.

Stay sane but stay safe!

AFD 1*

Brew Day – No-Boil Dry Irish Stout (Greyson’s Blarney Bitter Stout)

Hey all,
In honor of my son, and with St. Patrick’s Day rapidly approaching I have a quick Dry Irish Stout beer recipe that can be brewed and drank within 2 week ( with a force carb system) or a month without.

This recipe will be very close to a Guinness Foreign Stout clone. The dark malts and added mild hop flavor from the Bullion hops give a nice mellow bite to this Bitter Stout. If you have a nitrogen system I suggest you give it a go and see how it turns out, but its great on CO2.

Grain Bill, Hops & Extract:
2.5 lbs golden lite DME
12.5 oz Marris Otter
10oz Roast Barley
2.5oz Caraffa II
1.25oz Black Patent
1 pack W34/70 dry Lager Yeast
1oz Bullion Hops

I steeped all the grain with the DME and enough water to hit 2.5 gallons at 180 degrees for 30 minutes. I then removed the grain and whirlpooled the hops for 30 minutes before removing from heat and letting cool to room temperature (over night).

I transferred the wort to fermentation vessel and pitched the dry yeast. Kept at 70 degrees for 6 days before cold crashing and conditioning in a fridge (or outside -winter here) for 4 days.

I kegged and force carbonated overnight for 12 hours at 40 PSI before bumping the gas down to serving pressure of 12 psi.

The results are amazing. Creamy thick foam, complex flavor with notes of toffee, coffee, roasted break and a slight bitterness from the hops and dark grains.

Slainte folks!

Mmmm Greyson’s Blarney Stout… Just in time for St. Patrick’s Day 🍀🍀🍀☘️

Brew Day 2: Peach Session Mead

Today I am writing about a recent brew I did that I bottled today. It tastes AWESOME. If you like Peach with just a touch of honey flavor on the back end, then you will love this mead.

Now I know its cinco de mayo and I will be enjoying a taco salad and cerveza later, but right now I need to express how great this mead is and would go well with some flan or Churros! Now to get on with how I brewed it –

I used a flavorful Peach Tea blend (2 bags) and 3 pounds of clover honey to create this spring/summer sipper in just 5 days. That’s right, just 5 days. Some people will say that is sacrilege, but anyone who has tried this mead will protest! I steeped the tea in 4 cups of water and let it sit till it was room temperature. I then added 3 pounds of honey and .5 oz of Wyeast nutrient into my (clean and sterilized) fermentor and mixed the hell out of the solution. I then added more water to get my final volume to 2.5 gallons. a final stir to make sure everything is all mixed together and a good amount of oxygen taken in, I pitch my D47 yeast (2 packs).

I let the wort ( un-fermented beer or mead/wine) ferment for 3 days at 68 degrees. On the 3rd day I sampled the mead and it was semi-dry, flavorful of peach and some vanilla and petulant ( slightly fizzy). It had a good aroma on it and hazy very hazy ( think Wheat Beer). I did a gravity reading and the mead was sitting at 6% AVB on the nose.

I decided I liked the ABV and flavor so much that I cold crashed the mead by placing in my fridge for 48 hours. Now some will argue that technically the mead was still fermenting and I could have gotten the ABV higher and had the mead clear more if I just has waited. Well screw that. I liked how it tastes, its at the alcohol level I want and it frees up a fermentor for another brew!

I bottled the mead this morning and have enjoyed it chilled with a splash of seltzer as well as straight in a highball glass over some ice. Its very reminiscent of peach tea and can be served similarly.

Brew Day 1 for April: MEAD

As part of my promise to help Dad’s everywhere develop hobbies, stay sane, and learn new skills, I present to you – BREW DAY – The posts that follow what I am brewing, the recipes I use/create, the process I took and other odds and ends as to why I do what I do.

For the first entry in our series I present a simple but tasty Mead that will hit about 5-6% alcohol by volume, so very session-able indeed. The ingredients are dead simple and the process even more so. This mead will technically be a Methglyn – herbs (or dried fruit) and honey mixed. The fruit in this case will be Wild Berry Blend tea which will impart flavor, and the honey will be a mild clover honey.

Items you will need:
• Fermentor- a bucket or gallon jug – total volume today will be 1 gallon.
• Yeast – dry white wine variant (D47 is solid)
• Yeast nutrient
• 1.5-2 lbs of honey – raw is better, local is best but $$$
• 1-2 tea packets – I used wild berry blend
• Stir device
• Airlock
First clean and sanitize anything that will touch your mead. Use hot water and a dash of bleach after you thoroughly clean everything.

  1. Take your tea and steep for 30 minutes or until it’s just warm to the touch in 4 cups of water.
  2. In your fermentor add .25 gallon of water that is warm
  3. Add 1 tsp yeast nutrient
  4. Add your honey, if it’s slow going, put the container in a warm water bath to make it easier to get out
  5. Mix the hell out of that stuff in your fermentor.
  6. Now that the tea is cooled down and steeped, add that to the fermentor and mix like hell again.
    a. Mixing like this incorporates oxygen which is needed to start a fermentation. Where sugar gets converted to alcohol. Once you close you container do not open or allow air to touch again till you bottle to drink.
  7. Level out to one gallon by adding room temperature water.
  8. Carefully open and pitch ( toss in without touching) your dry yeast over the top of the fermentor.
  9. Close lid on fermentor and add airlock – could be the plastic kind in a bung with water or even a ballon with a pin hole in it wrapped over the top of the jug. Google it for pictures)
  10. Let sit at room temperature (62-78 degrees, check temps for your yeast you pick) for a week to 10 days. This really should be finished fermenting in 3-5 days but if your house is on the colder side it will take longer to finish ferment.
  11. After 3-5 days if you see no more air bubbles in the airlock ( or your ballon droops) and the mixture is looking clear and the yeast is on the bottom of the container, you are ready to syphon your MEAD to drinking vessels or a secondary container to carbonate. Chill mead and DRINK. Should be between 5-6% abv and may have slight fizz tingle.
Step 5
Sealed and ready to go ferment

OPTIONAL IF YOU WANT FIZZY/ CARBONATED MEAD
Seal the mead in a gallon jug or keg, add priming sugar or more honey and let the container sit for another 10-14 days. After that time the residual yeast will have eaten the new sugar/ honey you added and convert it into CO2 which will be absorbed into the beverage due to not having and airlock. Then, chill and consume within 2 days unless you individually bottled the mead.

CONGRATULATIONS YOU HAVE JUST MADE MEAD, HONEY WINE, NECTUR OF THE GODS. GO DRINK LIKE A VIKING YOU SAVAGE! SKÖL

5 gallons of strong honey wine, 2.5 gallons of Melomel (Grape Mead), Today’s 1 gallon test batch of Wild berry Mead

Things to Do and Learn During Isolation This Easter/Passover (Keep Sane and Make Your Own Booze!)

Happy Friday All,

I know the coming weekend is a popular holiday with many of the world’s big 3 religions, Easter, Passover, Ramadan. It will be very different this year with the social lock down and stay at home orders. Just because you can’t go out doesn’t mean you still can’t celebrate with friends and family.

Thanks to the advent of different technologies you can Zoom/ Facebook Message or FaceTime your friends/families/parents/dog or cat/ goldfish(?). Regardless you can use this weekend and downtime to advance your skills that you can share with those people (and almost all of them over video chat). I am going to list some options below and then link out to other posts and sites I have either made or have found extremely helpful. Lists of ingredients/tools/materials needed are listed as well. So without further adieu:

Learn an instrument: I personally love playing the ukulele and have a few. You can find affordable starter soprano and tenor (bigger, lower tones, better for bigger hands) on Amazon, MusiciansFriend, and other sites. I personally love my Makala ukuleles with Nygut strings. Sites to help you learn basic chords with TONS of songs are out there but I love this site. This is also awesome as its a great starting point for your kids to get into other musical instruments such as guitar!,

Learn another Language: My wife and I love to travel. I lived abroad for many years and was exposed to many languages in Europe. Since my wife and I have started seeing each other we make it a point to go adventure! Now I know right now that’s not an option but that gives you more time to learn a language in as little as 5 minute a day playing games and listening to stories. https://www.duolingo.com/learn is a free resource that allows you to create a profile and go out an learn TONS of languages _FREE_. I have used this to teach myself German, which I used to navigate Munich,Germany, Austria and Switzerland! “Eins Mas, Bitte” ( a Mas (1L stein) of beer please!) I used it to help me remember my high school and college French and I have even started learning DANISH on there – Jeg Drikker Ol! (“I drink Beer”, remember start with the essentials). There is an app that you can download as well from Duolingo and can be installed on you iPad/phone/android devices. This is a great way to expose your children to another language and help educate them when online school meetings have lost their appeal.

Learn to make your own Alcohol: Beer, Wine, Mead – All use the same basic principals for fermenting sugar into alcohol. How they taste, the volumes, and the creativity in formulating recipes are all up to you!
I will add more posts in regards to wine and beer, but go online to find resources locally, such as local brew shops, who can provide you a vast knowledge of where and how to start brewing, but also to help you with any questions you may have. This also helps your local communities and the economy so do your civic duty and drink up. Personally I have been brewing only Mead (Honey Wine) recently. I do it many ways mixing in fruit or spices or Hops. I primarily make Mead in 2 styles, wine style ( 12-15% alcohol), or Session style (4-7% alcohol and carbonated like beer). You can get a decent Session mead from raw ingredients to something you can drink in as little as a week!

Dry Hopped Session Mead

The folks over at Groennfell Meadery in VT have great resources online to teach you how to make and trouble shoot your own meads at home, and the head Meadmaker Ricky, is a delight with his knowledge and awesome “Ask the Meadmaker” YouTube videos. https://www.groennfell.com/blog

Self care – Meditation: There are many apps out there that will give you guided meditations and many more videos on YouTube etc. to help. The simplest tool I have found to help anyone start is Box breathing. Here is how is goes:
1. Find a quiet area and sit comfortably or lay down and close your eyes.

2. Clear your mind and just focus on your breath, coming in, going out and how it feels in your head/chest/back then arms and legs.

3. Now just focus on the breath, inhale for a count of 4. Hold it in for a count of 4. slowly breath out for a count of 4. Hold you breath without air in your lungs for a count of 4. Then repeat inhalation instructions. Do this once or twice a day for 5-10 minutes. You will feel clear headed and calmer with lower levels of anxiety after.

This is a technique taught to first responder’s, Navy SEALs, Military and other professions of high stress situations. You do not even need to sit down and close your eyes but this activity helps calm the nervous system and is an essential *Life Hack* when things are just getting too intense.

Alright everyone – I hope you enjoyed these tips and advice. Much much more to come in the future around these topics and many more. The meditation/Breath technique will definitely help during this pandemic and being stuck at home. Thanks all for reading! Happy Easter/Oester/Passover!

1*

AFD

Pregnant wife and new baby coming during a pandemic…

I am going to be a new father. Its my first child. I am currently under isolation because the world is fighting against a virus that is ravaging populations. What a time to try to plan to bring new life into this world.

I have fears: Will my wife remain healthy till our child’s birth? If she does get sick, and it is COVID-19, can it pass to the baby? Will I be able to be in the hospital and see my child when they are born? Will I have to wait in isolation before I can see and hold my child?

I have hope: We see the curve flattening, we see communities coming together and communicating, we see medical staff, first responder’s ( where my LEO and fire brothers at?) going above and beyond to treat those who are sick. I am hopeful that the economy will recover and my retirement isn’t lost and those facing hardships will be back to work soon. I have hope that I will be a good father and be able to provide for my family.

What does this mean for the rest of you? Keep going strong, take it a day at a time, keep your powder dry, work out, meditate, care for your kin, and keep moving forward!

For meditation without the woowoo – Calm app

For Workout that gives you biggest bang for buck with minimal barbell/kettlebell – Tactical Barbell or Simple and Sinister books

For advice on Dad life: theversatiledad.com

1*


AFD

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