Just in case you hadn't heard, this was the first rainy weekend in Portland in quite a while. Not only that, Sunday turned out to have one ripper of a windstorm come through during the day. Lots of trees down, lots of power lines down, and my backyard was quite the mess for a while. On the bright side, a dead hanging branch that was needing to be removed managed to remove itself after a series of particularly big gusts...while I was outside...with the kids. Thankfully, I had been keeping an eye on it and when the big set of winds came through, it was time to hide under the eaves of the house. Good times, but ON TO THE BEER!
In order to do the big brew I wanted to do this weekend, I had to move my CDL into secondary. Well, even after 4 solid days of primary fermentation, it had another plan. It's plan? A 3rd round of a full on high krausen (big fermentation).
Thankfully, I had a bucket I could let it do its thing in for a while - 36 hours worth! Sure, I should have probably rigged up a blow-off tube, but I figured since it already pushed any air out, and would continue to do so, I'd just let it go and do a bit of an open fermentation in the garage - less to clean up this way. Hopefully there will be no ill effects to the final product. It's now cleaned up and bubbling away in a cool cupboard in the garage and probably going to need to be racked to another jug to clarify.
All of this was to make room for a big beer, which I've been lacking since haven't made a stout since before Christmas....although the dopplebock I did was pretty close...or possibly the belgian dark strong that is now in the bottle and hopefully carbonating up as you read this.
|That doesn't look chocolatey at all, does it?|
|Longest boil in a long time.|
In the end, the chocolate stout went into the bucket with an OG of 1.084. If those yeastie beasties do what they're supposed to do, this is going to be a strong, rich, chocolatey dessert beer - just what I was hoping for.
Since the boil took so long, I took the kids out into the wind to pick up branches and check on the yard, including my hops.
|Cascades, year 2...sort of.|
|Newport hops starting make a break for it.|
|The carbonation was actually quite smooth despite the appearance of the initial pour.|