So part of the fun of homebrewing is being an advocate for the craft. Sharing the process, sharing the results, and sharing knowledge is always important. My buddy Sully has enjoyed many of my homebrews across the years. I love getting Sully’s opinions on my beers. Sully has always stated he wanted to try brewing. He has gotten some kits in the past, but never brewed them. On a “normal” poker night, when we didn’t have poker, Sully and I decided to get our brew on. Not only was it a first time for him, but it was also MY first time brewing in the great outdoors, aka Sully’s patio.
So for this first outdoor brewing, I decided we would take the Mr. Beer stuff that he had, add some Mr. Beer stuff that I had, and we would have some fun. Sully’s wife is a big IPA gal now, and so I decided to cater to that. I brought over an extra lemon, some Falconer’s Flight 7 Cs hops, some Citra hops, and a few extra cans of Mr. Beer extract to help add to the overall abv of the beer.
To start, we first made a quick pilgrimage to a local grocer, a fine purveyor of craft beers, and picked up a few tasties for the night. We brought a few beers outside and began our boil. We used a Camp Chef Explorer 2 Burner Stove that he had gotten for his infamous tailgate parties. Using the Mr. Beer was a great idea, as it was easy to start with a quick extract, I had the extra ingredients on hand, and he had a Little Brown Keg for the fermentation.
Some funny things to note. I gave Sully a list of things to have on hand, including a nice big pot. He borrowed a good soup pot from his mom. That’s when I realized I forgot my pot. I remembered EVERY THING else, in cluding a test tube, the hydrometer, all the extra ingredients…..boy, did this brewmaster feel dumb. I warned Sully about the possibilities of a boil over. Yup. you guessed it. I boiled over and he did not. I blame it on the smaller pot……
My beer, Sully Bubba and the 7 Cs, was a mixture of two Mr Beer extracts, Red Ale and American Light. Falconer’s Flight 7Cs hops, and a little extra lemon. Sully made a Sully’s Tailgate Ale. His was a Mr. Beer Blonde, American Light extract, Citra hops, and some lemon. In total, both 2.5 gallon brews had 2.5 cans of Mr. Beer extract. Similar in ingredients, but different enough for Sully to be able to taste how small things change a recipe.
I found brewing outside to be fun. I liked the idea of using the camp stove and being able to brew outdoors. I don’t have a burner of my own to use outdoors….YET. I liked the ability to sit on the patio and enjoy the outdoor air while brewing. I think my wife may like me to brew outside as well, she hates the smell of brewing hops.
When it all comes down to it, brewing with someone else is a whole lot of fun. I highly re commend it. So be a brewing champion. Invite someone to brew with you. Teach someone else to brew. Drink with others while brewing. It is a rewarding experience!