I hate bottling.
My original plan was to let the X-Mas Ale sit in secondary longer, but when I made that plan, I was forgetting that I need the secondary for adding spices to my pumpkin ale. So, I decided to go ahead and bottle today.
Have I mentioned that I hate bottling? Hate is probably too strong a word. It is mostly that it is just more time-consuming than kegging. It has been a long time that I've bottled a whole batch of beer, and I had almost forgotten how much more time consuming it is. I'm not too sure what the last batch of beer was that I bottled. It might be last year's X-Mas Ale.
Or I might not.
So, when I bottle, I rack my beer into an empty keg and then use my Beer Gun to fill bottles. This time, something weird happened.
|A poor-man's beer gun|
I did the same thing this time too, but the tip got past me (I thought) into the second bottle. And then I poured back and forth ... getting more and more confused. Eventually I admitted to myself that the tip had disappeared! It was not in either bottle.
I looked through the glass at bottles already filled. Nothing.
I looked in the sink thinking maybe I had somehow completely missed it jumping out when going back and forth. Nothing. Not even down in the garbage disposal. Yes, I looked there too. I looked on the table. I looked on the floor. I could not find this stupid little black tip anywhere.
Eventually, I decided to give up and put a bottling wand in a picnic-tap (see the picture above labeled "poor-man's beer gun"). I sanitized this and used it to fill the rest of the bottles. It worked fine. I suspect (if I remember) this is what I'll use next time I bottle a significant number of bottles.
After filling the rest, while cleaning up, I finally discovered that the black tip had gotten stuck in the funnel's narrow part. Of course, I feel like an idiot for not looking there. Looking back, that would have been the logical place to look when I discovered it was not in either of the bottles I was pouring back and forth from.
Oh well. Sometimes I'm not not that smart. What can I say?
|Found the tip.|
I will have to write John Blichmann and communicate my disappointment with the gun.
But, the good news is that I now have my X-Mas Ale bottled.
I got 4 PET liter bottles, 7 bombers, and 29 12oz bottles.
In about a month (around Halloween), I'll start sampling.
The good news is that the beer tasted fantastic warm and flat. Obviously it will be even better cool and carbonated.
I'll let you know for sure around Halloween. I'll probably let you know again around Thanksgiving. And then, of course, around Christmas.
Can't wait, can you?