This weekend was bottling weekend for my first batch of home brew. Last Thursday I made my way out to the home brew store to get some bottling supplies. I really only knew the basics for what I needed when I walked in there so instead of making it a terrible experience from forgetting things or buying the wrong things, I asked the guy at the counter for some advice. He actually took the time to bring me into the back to show me a few things about bottling. If you are in Buffalo, NY and want to get into home brewing, I highly suggest going to Niagara Tradition Home Brew Supply. After watching him show me a few things, I was introduced to a few cool gadgets that make things easier, one being this:
This thing is awesome. You basically fill the bowl portion with about an inch of sanitizer, place the bottle on the thing in the center, and push down. It projects a forceful spray of sanitizer inside the bottle. This made it very easy to sanitize 2 cases of bottles in minutes.
I used the auto-siphon which was recommended to me over using a bottling bucket. Its a lot better for the beer. Starting the siphon was a bit of a challenge for me because I had never used one before. I ended up blowing the tip off my filler wand and sprayed beer all over, but hey, you live and learn. Once I got the siphon going it was super easy.
Ignore my pants, It’s Sunday, a day where normally we have things to do but this particular Sunday was a total day off so I was in no hurry to get dressed.
After a while, I got the hang of it and set up a little bottle stand. This allowed me to cap while the siphon slowly filled the bottles.
The bottle capping device was fairly easy to use. Again, I’m no expert so the first 5 minutes I looked like a cave man.
Overall my beer had a nice color and smelled good. I now have to keep the bottles in a 65-70 degree environment for 6-7 more days before moving them to the basement where they will be in a 50-60 degree environment. I hope its good. The guy at the brew store said that if he knew this was my first brew he would have advised against me trying to brew a beer this complicated, but its the type of beer I love, so its the one I want to be good at making!
In a little over a month, I find out if I’m any good!
That guy was quite accommodating to have brought you out back and teach some useful stuff. You know bottling liquids and beverages is a complex procedure, so actually seeing some of the practices does help a lot. Was that your first time? I hope you didn’t forget to sanitize EVERYTHING that comes in contact with the beer. 😉 Call me once they are ready, and let’s have a taste of that. Ha-ha!
Yeah the batch came out with really good flavor, honestly better than I imagined however the carbonation was not enough. So next time I'll have to use a bit more sugar I think. Just waiting to finish a few more bottles and then I'll start another batch. Fun stuff, thanks for reading!