Category Archives: homebrewing

Smoke-hopping: a stupid idea?

Why would I brew a 200-barrel batch of a beer based on an intriguing idea? I wouldn’t. And that’s why breweries have pilot systems–to test ideas. Sometimes ideas are bright, the resulting elixirs rushed into production. And sometimes ideas are … Continue reading

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Anti-Black Friday Beer Shenanigans

In an act of anti-Black Friday defiance, I elected not to knock down old ladies for bargains.¬†Instead, I had a turkey sandwich for lunch before joining forces with my merry band of local homebrewers for an afternoon of kegging and … Continue reading

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Barrel-aged book tour, part 2

Stop number two on the probably-two-stop Diary of a Part-Time Monk Barrel-aged Book Tour is Des Moines’ well-regarded¬†El Bait Shop, a must-see tap room with an explosion of personality, a wall full of taps and–coming soon–Barrel-aged Illuminator Doppelbock. November 17 … Continue reading

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Sniff, sniff

We just couldn’t stop sniffing. Two really good-smelling things the other day: 1. our Templeton Rye barrel 2. our Baltic Porter Our homebrew club combined those two into a glorious, whiskified brewser of an olfactory experience, as we racked 53 … Continue reading

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Welcome, Gabe!

The world is a better place. My friend Gabe joined the ranks of homebrewers over the weekend. We fired up a stout over the weekend (and sampled a gaggle of tasty brews along the way). Raise one!

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Brewing Illuminator–a beer for the fast lane

A few days ago I mentioned my doppelbock collaboration with Eric Sorensen of Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery–Des Moines, and it’s time to dive a little deeper into what that’s all about. Enamored with the story of the origins of … Continue reading

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AC/BC launches in style

4 mash tuns, 6 guys, 60 gallons of beer and a brand-new club When I moved to Adams County, Iowa, nearly four years ago, my biggest fear was that I would be a beer geek all alone. Thank goodness a … Continue reading

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Etched in chalk

Wonderful Beer Wife and I stopped by Rock Bottom-Des Moines today for a late lunch, and noticed by their chalkboard that it was time I shared a little information on a project that I’ve been working on for a few … Continue reading

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Rumble Seat

As you can see, yesterday was a good day. Our humble group of southwest Iowa homebrewers have a plan in mind, and yesterday I trekked to Templeton to pick up the sacred vessel which will bring us together one glorious … Continue reading

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Carbonic Plague: a wild hop experiment

  A little back story: last fall, a friend tipped me off about some wild hops growing in the ditch on a gravel road just outside Carbon, Iowa (pop. 28). This September, I went out and harvested. A couple of … Continue reading

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