Friday, March 20, 2009

Rustlers, Devils and Maggie..

That's a fabulous picture of the deviled eggs I threw together the other day and ate for lunch and dinner (there were a lot of them! Spanned a few meals there..). I'm still gearing up for what to do with the eggs form my chicks when that day comes. :-) I never made these things before and wanted to show off my mad egg skillz. ;-]

This here is a photo of the Traxxas Rustler R/C I picked up last weekend and haven't had a chance to write about just yet. It's a VXL model which just means that it uses the newfangled brushless motor technology. Google it, there's lots of info out there on 'em. It's really pretty fast.. 30+ mph, and it's great fun chasing the dog with it. She's never had something that's faster than her chase her around, and it works wonders to tire her out by nipping it on her heels.

On to the real meat of the show! This here is the Oro de Maggie beer you've all been waiting so long to hear about. Check back on some previous posts to get the whole details on this, but suffice it to say, it's gonna be great. I just finished kegging it a couple hours ago, and everything went smooth. It's got a fabulous light golden color to it that doesn't quite come across in this pic as it does in person. There's a good sized maltiness to this beer, and a residual sweetness that I just don't understand, coming from a beer that finished out at 1.005 S.G. 6.3% abv in the end run! When I racked it from primary after about 10 days, it was still up at 1.033 from it's O.G. of 1.054, and during the course of time from January till now, the wild yeast went in on it big time, knocking that down. It's got a distinct sourness to it now, but not a huge, overpowering sourness. So, let's recap: Malty, Sweet and sour? WTF? How did that combo come together? Common brewing sense says this thing should be thin as a dime with an F.G. like that. I don't get it either. Just tellin' ya what I taste here in this warm, flat sample. My gut says it's a winner though, and for a 2.5 month start to finish sour beer, I think I can totally reccomend this Jolly Pumpkin yeast.. really nice stuff there at the bottom of those bottles. And that yeast flocculates like the dickens, too. Both beers I've made from it is clear as a bell rigt from the first beer off the tap. It's gonna be some more time in the keg downstairs till it gets some time in the fridge on the gas, so you'll have to hang tight till some other kegs kick to get the full report on the finished product. As always, I'll let you know when it's done and ya'll can come up for a taste.

Now go click my Google ads!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Coffee Brix? OK..

Been screwing with my Aeropress a lot these past few weeks. I still highly recommend it. I believe it may now be my favorite prep method. Every once in a while I break out my Vac pot to stay in tune, and I notice a definite difference in the taste. Sometimes one coffee preparation method makes a better taste in the mug than the other, but usually they're pretty close. Yesterday I was messing around with my Brix meter again while making a cup of this newfangled Wonko bean that Kevin sent me.. and I measured 1.9 on the meter. This, according to the SCAA, George Howell and Alan Adler (the guy who makes the Aeropress) multiplied by 0.85, roughly translates into the Total Dissolved Solids percent (TDS) of the cup you're measuring. According to SCAA stuff, they're currently thinking a number of 1.25% TDS is right on for brewed coffee. Well, I measured the Aeropress cup I was drinking yesterday and found it to taste like pure heaven.. and as it measured the 1.9 brix I mentioned above, that translates into ~1.6 TDS. A little stronger than SCAA thinks is ideal.

Today, I measured a cup of Yama Vacpot I brewed up using the 7 grams per 5oz water ratio I usually shoot for with vacpot and came up with 1.4 brix, equalling 1.19 TDS. A little short of the SCAA number of perfection. This cup was LACKING. Little body, a touch of astringency, and overall sadness compared to the cup of perfection I'd had the day before. Hmm.. seems I like my coffee on the higher end! I'll try for 1.25 TDS tomorrow and see what that tastes like before I get too carried away with this stuff, but it's an interesting new idea to wrap my head around. Plus, it's a way to meausure and quantify different prep methods and test them with roughly the same TDS numbers for the coffee, with only the brew method being the difference. Sort of levels the playing field that way, between brewers...

What a geek!

Now, go click that Google money link, you cheapskates!