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Nut Brown Ale, Week #2

by VM Brasseur on May 15th, 2006

The foam has subsided from the top of the wort. The fermentation lock has slowed its bubbling. All sure signs that the ale was ready to be racked off into the secondary fermentation vessel. One problem: I didn’t have one. I knew I was forgetting something…

Another trip to The Beverage People. Those folks are all getting so they recognize me. Lucky gal that I am, they had used carboys in stock (a rarity). While I was there I also picked up a couple of cases of bottles in anticipation of the bottling fest that’s going to happen next Sunday.

I also got a massive syringe to use as a siphon starter, but this ended up being five bucks down the tube, so to speak, as I never managed to get a good siphon going with it and ended up doing a “very bad thing” and mouth-started the racking siphon. So sue me. The first few ounces of wort siphoned from the primary went into the hydrometer flask anyway. A measurement gave me a specific gravity of 1.0215. The mixture tasted exactly like flat warm stale beer, so I guess I must be doing something right.

After getting all of the wort into the secondary vessel I figured out that I had neglected to buy another drilled stopper for the new carboy. Ah, bugger… Thankfully I had a solid stopper, a Craftsman power drill and a 5/16″ drill bit. A few minutes later I had a (somewhat roughly) drilled stopper into which the fermentation lock would just barely fit.

So now there’s five gallons of slightly cloudy but otherwise decent looking ale hanging out in my closet. Next Sunday the priming sugar will be added (for fizz production) and the whole lot will be portioned into the bottles and capped. Two weeks later it should be ready to go.

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