Saturday, January 25, 2003

Now That's More Like It!

Okay, so it took until 11 instead of 9, but it was worth it.

The new lauter tun worked beautifully. Because of this, I was able to filter and re-filter the wort until it ran clear as a bell. The branches in the bottom of the tun caused no sticking during lautering or sparging, and because of the juniper my apartment smells like a dark, musty mix between bread and Christmas trees. :-)

And then there was the wort chiller. Bloody amazing. I don't think I've actually giggled at a gadget working so well in a long time. It took four gallons from boiling to 78° F in nineteen minutes flat. I achieved a cold break like none I've ever seen before (I could actually see the chiller extending three coils down into the wort - about 2½ inches), but after such a spiffy lauter and sparge, there was precious little sediment to worry about anyway. :-D

The chiller worked so well I became worried about the dilution water I'd prechilled being too cold (which would make for sluggish yeast), at which point Matt recommended I shoot hot water through the 'chiller' (more accurately a heat-exchanger) to warm up the gallon-plus of 40° F water to room temperature. It took all of two minutes. Simply astounding. I wound up waiting on the starter culture for the yeast! I've never experienced this much control over fluid temperatures before. Hee hee hee.

So anyway, the brew went wonderfully well, for a change. Rich's Nearly-Finnish Sahti is in the fermenter. Now we'll see how well the "rapid rise" bread yeast works.

Hum te tum te tum... Makin' beer...