Monday, December 30, 2013

December boxes

I ditched BeerAdvocate and moved over to BeerTrading (now TalkBeer) back in September. What a wonderful place, especially compared to BA. The community on TB is exponentially better, and it helped me back into the trading scene a little bit. First up was actually a trade with claaark13, who I had previously traded with on BA. He reached out about Allagash Resurgam (and who can blame him). I wasn't really particular about what he sent back, and this is what showed up:

Crooked Stave Persica Batch 1 and 2 ('13), Bruery Beauregarde, Bruery Oude Tart with Cherries, Bruery Bottleworks XII, Bruery Sour in the Rye with Kumquats

While this trade was in the works, I noticed that TB was having a Secret Santa BIF. This, along with the Blind Beer BIF, was a favorite of mine so I opted in. Received this haul from xpimptastikx:

Bruery Black Tuesday '13, Bruery Bottleworks XII, Boulevard Bourbon Barrel Quad '13, Prairie Ales Prairie Hop, Westvleteren 12, Cantillon Rose de Gambrinus '11, North Coast Old Stock '08, Prairie Ales Saint Somewhere, Austin Brewing Heavy Machinery IPA, Adelbert's Brewery glass, Austin Brewing glass, Night Shift taster, Espresso BBQ sauce, homemade jelly

What was especially awesome is both boxes showed up on the same day. Needless to say it was an awesome Thursday. Going forward, I will still probably keep trading to a minimum but I will certainly be more than I was on BA towards the end. Currently have a pending deal with OlavZipser that we are just waiting until the holidays pass.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Blind Beer BIF #8

Ah, the Blind Beer BIF. My second time doing it - so much fun. Actually received this box back in June but didn't post until now as I was super busy planning for my wedding/honeymoon. Forgot about pictures, so here's just the haul.  Sent by nlmartin:

1 - Listerman Cincinnatus 2011
2 - Founders Nemesis 2009
3 - Goose Island Bourbon County Stout 2007
4 - Bells Batch 9000
5 - Stone Imperial Russian Stout 2007
6 - Stone Old Guardian 2008
7 - Jackie Os Kentucky Monk
8 - Stone Double Bastard 2006
9 - Founders Nemesis 2010
10 - Hoppin Frog BA Naked Evil BBW
11 - Triple Digit Brewing Chickow!

Holy aged beers, Batman! This box was a blast to drink through, with highlights being '09 Nemesis and '07 BCBS

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Latest Haul

Scot strikes again.  Apparently he has been gathering beers over the past few months/trips to send my way.  Rather large box landed on my doorstep yesterday.  Such a badass haul out of nowhere


Cigar City Florida Cracker White Ale, Cigar City Jai Lai IPA x2, Cigar City Cucumber Saison, Dark Horse Whiskey Richard Lambeak, Dark Horse Militiagan, Flossmoor Station Pullman Brown Reserve, Flossmoor Station Fireside Chat, Three Floyds Dark Lord '13, Half Acre Chocolate Camaro

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Crooked Stave trade

I went to The Festival in Portland last month, and was particularly impressed with every beer I had from Crooked Stave. Someone posted on Beer Advocate they had a few for trade and were looking for Allagash Coolship Red, so I jumped at the chance to obtain some bottles


Crooked Stave Nightmare on Brett Grand Cru, Crooked Stave Surette Reserva Peach Whiskey Barrel Aged, Crooked Stave St. Bretta (Spring)

Monday, June 17, 2013


Pretty fun themed BIF I recently joined.  You and a partner had to send 9 "holes", with each hole having a different requirement.  This is the awesome haul we landed:


Hole 1 - Captain Lawrence Rosso E Marrone x2 (American Sour with Fruit)
Hole 2 - Firestone Walker Parabola (BA Stout or Barleywine, 92+ rating)
Hole 3 - Cisco Monomoy Kriek (Shelf Turd)
Hole 4 - Alchemist Heady Topper (98+ rating)
Hole 5 - Deschutes The Abyss '08 (2009 or earlier)
Hole 6 - Russian River Consecration (15oz or less and either BA, brewery only or 97+)
Hole 7 - New England Brewing Imperial Stout Trooper and BA Stout Trooper (BA beer and base beer)
Hole 8 - Two Roads Igor's Dream (brewery only)
Hole 9 - New England Brewing Gandhi Bot 32oz growler x2 (as fresh as possible)

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Forth Brew - Hef

Brewed my forth batch this past weekend.  Real simple hefeweizen for the warmer days ahead.

5lb Bavarian Wheat DME
8oz Carahell
1oz Tettnanger 3.5AAU
Wyeast 3333

Stepped the grains for 20' at 155.  Two lbs of DME and the hops at the start of the boil, the rest of the DME at 15'.  I completely forgot to add the Carahell - noticed when I was running the wort chiller and there may have been a bit of swearing.  Oh well, guess the beer will have a little less body.  Still thinking about this, but I may split half the batch and rack onto some toasted coconut for a week.  This is why I love homebrewing!

Speaking of experiments, the coffee IPA came out awesome.  Great aroma and definitely picked it up in flavor too.  I'll be making a few tweaks next time though.  Need to sub out a hop (Cascade or Simcoe) for one that is a little more bitter/grapefruity.  The hop profile was all sweet citrus, very little bitterness.  I think that combined with a little more coffee will take this to the next level.  I am getting low, so it's about time to brew again...

Bottled the blonde.  If I did my calculations right, the beer came out around 3.5 ABV.  Don't think it was supposed to be that low.  Sample at bottling was definitely on the lighter side with a big ginger presence, so we'll see how it tastes in a few weeks.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Hello Spring!

Had a pretty good last half of March.  Brewed batch #2 (see below) and just bottled it last week.  Also brewed batch #3 on 3/20 - it's a Thai inspired Blonde Ale.  Going to let this one sit another week or so, mostly so I can save up empty bottles!  The IPA still has about another 2 weeks before being ready, so looks like I'll be drinking a lot of Porter for the time being.  The Porter is rounding into form, but is undercarbonated and too bitter (guessing that's due to the accidental early addition of cocoa powder).  It's not a drainpour though, so I'll consider that small victory!  Here's the recipe for the Blonde:

3.3lbs Light LME
2lbs Extra Light DME
2lbs American 2 Row
1.5lbs White Wheat Malt
8oz Honey Malt
Wyeast 1056

0.5oz Sorachi Ace at 60'
0.5oz Sorachi Ace at 10'
1oz Sorachi Ace at 0'

3oz minced ginger at 10'
2oz lemongrass leaves at 10'
1 lime, zested at 10'
1oz coriander at 10'
1 whirlfloc tab at 10'

Locally, two new beer-centric places just opened up.  First was In'finiti Fermentation and Distillation.  Really nice place, love the atmosphere.  All 3 beers they've put out - House (belgian table beer), IPA and Blonde have been really tasty.  Food's a bit pricey, but was worth it.  Next up was The Little Tap House.  Great beer selection, but seems like they need time to tweak their menu.  Prime example - the Soup, Salad, Sandwich section lists 3 salads and a burger.  Potential to be a frequent spot for me.  Finally, Allagash continues to turn out great coolship beers, with the most recent release being batch 2 of Cerise

Speaking of coolships, worked out a small deal involving Resurgam, FV13 and a few locals...

* - extra

Columbus Brewing IPA x2*, Bruery Otiose, Bruery Sour in the Rye, Bruery Tart of Darkness*

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Brew Day #2

Last Saturday I decided to brew again and this time it was an IPA.  Pretty simple recipe I found online.  I used DME this time - a little more pricey but a lot easier to use

As I'm sure you can tell, I'm really glad I used the blow-off tube for this one.  It was bubbling like crazy for about 48 hours before finally calming down Tuesday morning.

Thinking about 2 weeks in primary before transferring to secondary for 1 week of dry hopping.  When it's time to bottle, I'll do half the batch as regular and the other half I'm going to add about 2oz of cold steeped coffee to.  Here's the recipe I used:

7.5lbs Extra Light DME
1.5lbs Caramel Malt 80L (mash in 45' at 158°, mash out 15' at 168°)
WYeast 1272 (American II)

1oz Cascade (3.2 AAU) at 60'
1oz Amarillo (9.3 AAU) at 35'
0.5oz Simcoe (13.0 AAU) at 30'
0.5oz Warrior (16.7 AAU) at 30'
1oz Cascade secondary
1oz Simcoe secondary
1oz Warrior secondary

I also ended up bottling my first batch the next day on Sunday.  What a mess.  Turns out that I only had a transferring spigot for the bottling bucket.  Did not realize this until after the bucket was full, of course.  I filled the bottles straight from the bucket so there was a lot of oxygen that got into the beer.  Guess I'll just have to drink them sooner than later once they're ready!  Just for fun, I filled a swingtop growler and added half a bourbon vanilla bean.  I have concerns that the beer won't carbonate fully in the growler and that the vanilla bean will be in there too long, dominating the flavor of the beer.  But if it works, I'm thinking it'll be pretty tasty.  I'll be sure to report back with details in a few weeks

Monday, February 18, 2013

First Brew Day

I was very lucky to receive brewing equipment for Christmas but have just been looking at it ever since.  I knew there was a lot of reading to do first (highly recommend but there was also some procrastination involved.  For whatever reason, on Saturday I felt it was finally time.  I did some research online and found a pretty simple Chocolate Porter receipe from  There were some tweaks I made, one accidently!

3.3lbs Dark LME
3.3lbs Light LME
0.75lbs Molasses
0.25lbs Chocolate Malt (45' at 158°)
8oz Cocoa Powder

1oz EKG 4.7 AAU at 60'
1oz Fuggles 4.0 AAU at 30'
1oz EKG 5.7 AAU at 5'

The hops in the original receipe were slightly different, but given that I was making a non-hopcentric beer I figured that it wouldn't really matter.  The mistake I made was related to the cocoa powder.  I wasn't really paying attention and added it at the beginning of the boil.  Again, pretty sure it won't ruin anything, but just to be sure I added another ~6oz at the same time as the last hop addition.  Now it's time to wait!

I also received a box of beer in the mail a few weeks back and completey forgot to post it.  I'm already gearing up for my response


Bell's Hopslam x3, Surly Darkness '12, Goose Island Madame Rose, Kuhnhenn A Few Shillings Too Many, Kuhnhenn Bourbon Barrel Solar Eclipse, Kuhnhenn 4th Dementia, homebrew Rye Saison with brett, homebrew DIPA

Thursday, January 17, 2013

And I'm Back!

Admittedly, my interest in beer trading has greatly declined as of late.  Maine has been getting so many new brands that things I used to have to trade for, I can just pick up on the shelve.  However, I just couldn't pass up on the Secret Santa BIF that I loved in previous years.  The guy running the BIF moved it to Facebook for various reasons, most of which I completely understood.  Received the following box which met all my expectations!

Victory Dark Intrigue '10, Victory Red Thunder, Stoudts Old Abominable, Spring House Brewing Planet Bean Coffee Stout, St. Boniface Libation Double IPA, St. Boniface ESB, St. Boniface Hegemony Stout, Troegs Perpetual IPA, Troegs Mad Elf '12, Troegs Scratch 78, Troegs Scratch Fest Lager, Williamsburg Coffeehouse Stout, Twisted Pine Ghost Face Killer, Sly Fox Odyssey, Sly Fox Christmas, Sly Fox stein, Stoudts t-shirt, Wilburs chocolate

Well, this apparently got me in the trading spirit.  That, or not finding any Imperial Stout Trooper when I was home for Christmas.  So I set up a small trade to ease my way back into the game.

* - extra

New England Brewing Imperial Stout Trooper, Bruery Five Golden Rings, Pliny the Elder*