Monthly Archives: December 2011



In the last year, I have been delving more and more into Rauch Biers, often times falling in love with the ones I try.  This recipe came from the BYO article that published the GABF winners. These beers both spent 23 days in their respective casks

Scotch Barrel Rauch (left) vs Evan Barrel Rauch (right)

The scotch Barrel Rauch Bier:

Apperance: A little cloudy and not clear enough to see through.  The color is a wonderful amber brown

Nose:  Big time oak, Ham, and an odd spearmint hint to the nose

Taste: The front is very smooth, with a smokey, oaky finish.  The scotch character is present throughout, but is always a pleasant highlight that doesn’t get in the way.  The oak and the smoke go great together

Overall: A long flavor with a  smooth sweetness, but a dry finish at the end. Add this one to the “must do again list”

9.5/ 10

The Evan Bourbon Rauch Bier:

Appearance: a darker amber color than the scotch barrel

Nose: the scent of bourbon is significant in the nose.  Underneath that, there is some malty scents showing up, but barely getting past the bourbon

Taste: A subtle cloying character and the flavors do not seem to blend well. Their is a slight tartness that comes out of this beer as well, but I don’t think its from micro’s, kinda feel like its from the blend of smoke and bourbon

Overall: win some and loose some huh?! This beer is drinkable, but not very enjoyable. I feel a pork shoulder coming in the near future for this.  5/10



After using a potassium metabisulfite treatment on my infected Earl Wit, I waited about 2 weeks (kegs were all full, dammit) I finally kegged this beer and hoped for the best. The next day it was carbed and tasted, here’s what I found out

infected Earl wit

The beer looked perfect, just like a normal batch, but when I went to smelt it, it wasn’t what I was expecting.  Earl Wit has a great lemon nose with hints of tea and wheat, this beer smelt like a stanky becks.  Which isn’t that horrible, but out of place.  The taste of the beer completely blew my mind.  This beer, after the infection and treatment, had a flavor nearly exactly to an uninfected beer.  There is a very subtle tartness, but nearly unnoticeable, and I really think it might be my mind convincing me of the off flavor.

Final observation….. infection? so what! keg it and drink it. I’m really glad I didn’t dump this beer! I still pray to the shrine of “Relax, don’t worry, HAVE A HOMEBREW”



Ladies and Gentlemen, the day has finally arrived. For the first time in my brewing experience I have managed to brew an infected beer. It seems that between transferring beer in my casks and racking into secondary, some unwanted critters came along. After a few days, my batch of Earl Wit looked like an alien eye stressfully starring at me!


Once I discovered this bad boy, I thought it was a good time to use the information I picked up at a wine making class. I threw in about 3 teaspoons of potassium metabisulfite into the carboy and gave it a good shake. It seemed to knock out the growing micro organism, but things definitely looked weird

infection 1 week after potassium sulfite addition

I just kegged this batch up and put it on today! I’ll post a tasting soon

Rye Cask Tasting, 1.0 vs 2.0


When I got my first cask, I quickly put some cheap Canadian rye into it and started aging ASAP. As soon as I could (about 6 weeks), I emptied the cask and put in a cream stout. The cream stout ended up being way over powered by the oak and by the rye, so I stashed away as much as I could and to let them age.

Six months later and there is only 1 bottle left, but a purpose has been found for the last one standing. In an effort to learn from my first attempt, I poured the last stout along side the foreign export stout that I aged in the same cask (which I had since aged with Pendleton Rye for around 5 months). So here is the comparison version 1.0 v 2.0, both were the first beer aged in the cask after the rye was taken out.

My roommates Tom and Justin helped me with this. Justin is cool and Tom is a sommelier

2.0 in the smaller glasses to the left, 1.0 in the taller glasses to the right

Version 1.0 (cream stout, aged 7 months) 5.3 % ABV

APPERANCE: A nice dark brown color that reminds me of raisins

NOSE: Had a big maple syrup and oak nose

TASTE: A sweet bourbon taste (which is weird, this is a rye cask) with a solid oak mid mouth taste. The end gave a faint raspberry with a slight wine character. It seemed like the oak and tannins overpowered this beer, but the age allowed for a real nice mellowing of the flavors

MOUTHFEEL: Good carbonation and a easy initial flavor. The tannins lingered on the back of the tongue

OVERALL: This was a damn good beer, it was a great first attempt at oak aging. Nevertheless, I would beef up the beer in both alcohol and roastiness.


me and justin, developing our palates

Version 2.0 (foreign export stout, aged about 1 month) 8.0% ABV

APPEARANCE: Completely black, can’t even see light through it.

NOSE: Had an alcohol hot nose, kind of sharp, definitely a roasty scent underneath the hotness.

TASTE: A full bodied stout with a nice light cream flavor. The oak background goes hand in hand with the rye flavor. Underneath is a neutral nutty flavor.

MOUTHFEEL: A wonderful round softness to this beer. Carbonation was perfect and a little higher than normal.

OVERALL: This was a fantastic beer! It will be made again (and already has been)