Thursday, April 25, 2019

How did the Hail Storm Beer turn out? | Altbier bottling

So after an eventful brew day and a week of fermentation later, I needed to bottle out the Altbier.

This brew had a little bit of blow off on the second and third day of fermentation, which I was tipped off to it when my bedroom started to smell like bread after coming home. It was not serious like any of the times I've used WLP023 in the past. A quick cleaning of the airlock twice and it was good to go both times.
The strategy for that day was to bottle out as much beer as I possibly could in my growlers and bottles in the house, while the rest of the beer would fill up one of my kegs for longer term storage. It is much easier to transport a keg filled with beer than a bucket containing beer.
A gravity reading of this brew turned out at 1.018, which would mean this beer is only 4.2% ABV. I find this odd because although this brew should be a malt monster with all the Munich Malt we used, our low mash temperature should have converted more starch to sugars.
Diligently, I filled up around 29 bottles of beer after filling two 64 oz growlers. I did have one unfortunate accident where one bottle shattered when I went to cap it but I wasn't injured. Cleaning up broken glass is never fun.
So why did I bottle this only after a week? I'm moving! Not surprisingly, the beer was the last thing I removed from my room during this move out. How fitting!
After moving my entire life several miles away, and giving it about a week and a half to carbonate, I cracked open one of the beers to see how it turned out. As you can see, the color of this brew is a deep amber. It's very reminiscent of the Alternate Dimension Altbier I tasted not too long ago. I'm still doubtful that it only fermented to 4.2% ABV, so I'll have to grab a gravity reading when I bottle out that keg. I really think it's higher ABV based on how I feel after drinking it.
Now in regard to the flavor of this beer, this thing is a malt monster! For being half Munich malt, this tastes exactly how I thought it would. I love this flavor! The heavy malt and caramel flavor makes this brew really easy to put down. Now I can see how the Europeans can drink so much without stopping.... great tasting beers with low ABV is a winning formula in my eyes. Cheers!

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