Today was bottling day for my Pliny the Elder homebrew clone, Commandant Pliny. This is the second brew in my Clone Wars series. This homebrew was made back in February, during a beer tasting with buddies. It was nice to bottle just 25 total bottles. I used 20 bottles that were 20 oz or bigger, which made the process go much faster. Once I get a kegerator up and running, I can see this getting even quicker!
Some things I pondered:
- The new bottling wand with the spring is a HUGE help. I had less than 3 drops of spillage the whole time. This is a big thing considering there was so much hop material in the beer from all that hops.
- I had just short of 4.5 gallons go into the bottling bucket. Of that, I actually bottled just short of 4 gallons due to sample testing, and massive amounts of hops sludge that made it in through the siphon. I didn’t want to have bottles that were hop sludge depositories.
- I left it in the secondary longer than needed. I am not sure what this will do to the overall flavor, but the hopping schedule for the dry hopping for the bottling was almost spot on.
- I did have some loss from the transfer and yeast collection, next time, I think I will push a little more volume at initial fermentation to get more bottles next time.
- The idea of a beer tasting while brewing was a great one. In fact, one of the tasters is hosting a group of us this weekend while he brews and we taste again! Woohoo! I look forward for a little reporting back from that night.
- I am looking forward to the reuse of the WLP001 yeast that I harvested. I got hopefully a viable amount to use in the future. I will also look into making over sized starters with fresh yeast, and splitting them in the future as well….this would alleviate the hop trub to decant with super hoppy brews like this one.
- I probably won’t be able to taste this side by side with Pliny the Elder. I have had it before, but it is tough to procure here in NY State. Oh well…..it should be a tasty beer either way.