Well, here in Michigan its colder than a well diggers ass. Which makes my cement block basement also cold. The low temperatures make it hard to enjoy the man cave in the basement, but on the plus side its still perfect for lagering some beer. The thermometer next to my brewing station stays pretty steady around 50 degrees, and that is right where I want it for primary fermentation of my German Oktoberfest.
The Brewer’s Best German Oktoberfest kits was the first partial mash kit I tried and I had really good luck with it. It was a big hit all my friends that came over, even ones that don’t usually drink craft beer explanation. The local home brew store just happened to have it on sale so I couldn’t say no. Especially since the last batch has been long gone.
The brewing process of this kit is very simple. There are 2 small amounts of Crystal malt included as the specialty grain, which we steeped at around 160 for 20 minutes. Then after bringing the wort to a nice boil we added the 1lb bag of Amber Dried malt extract and the 2-3.3lb cans of Munich Liquid malt extract.
Upon bringing the water back to a boil it was time for start the hop schedule. This kit only included 2 oz. of hops, 1 oz. of Willamette hops was added for bittering as soon as the water reached its boil. Then with 20 minutes to go in the 60 minute boil we added the other 1oz. package of Willamette for the flavoring hops. Let it boil for that final 20 minutes then it was time to start cooling the wort.
Our “Ghetto” cooling contraption is basically just a large metal tub we fill with ice or snow, in this case snow, and set the brew kettle down into. It usually works quite well especially with such a low quantity of water as this kit was designed for only a 2.5 gallon boil. Once the water cool off considerably it was poured into the primary fermentor and topped off with cool water. The bucket was capped and airlock filled, and we let everything sit for about another hourto cool before pitching the yeast, since the yeast in the this kit was designed to work between 48-58.
Unfortunately I wasn’t able to take an Original gravity reading since my dumbass broke my last hydrometer as I was sterilizing all my equipment before makeing this batch. But visually the beer was fermenting quite nicely after a few days, and should hopefully be juat about fermented out in 2 weeks when I will transfer to a secondary.