Brewing Apricot Saison in collaboration with my friend and fellow BFD Mike Damiano, and Patriot Oatmeal Stout. We brewed the Saison in a 15 gal batch on Mikes electric brewery, which was pretty freakin cool! I have about 4.5 gals on apricot puree sitting in my apartment right now, while Mike has the remaining 10 gals. So we have 5 for AHA and about 4 for each of us! This is my first fruit beer (unless you count a pumpkin ale I made right after I started brewing). Here's the info on how to add fruit: http://www.homebrewjunkie.com/2008/05/adding-fruit-to-home-brew.html
After speaking to a couple folks who have done this recently, I think we may have been light on the Apricot, but we will see.
Today I am brewing the Oatmeal stout, and I have had the difficult experience of trying to do a double infusion in a 10 gal cooler. I added another 2 gals of boiling water to the mash to get to Mashout temp (168 degrees F) and ended up with minor overflow. This was one of the most difficult brew days I have had in some time, and it all started with the grain crush. I couldn't get it to crush properly, and I ended up with the grain still in the husk, even though I conditioned it and re-milled it. I think there could have been two issues:
- I was using some Valley Malt 2 row that is now 2 years old, I think. It is possible that it isn't good anymore.
- I was trying to mill the grain using a drill instead of hand cranking, as I usually do. I wonder if I milled too fast and it just squirted through.
- (oh, yeah, I said two--well tough) I might not have sprayed sufficient water to condition the grain .
Next up for tasting is the apricot saison. I may get another can of apricot and add that in as well.