Friday, May 11, 2012

Weekend Sans Kids

I have mentioned before on this blog that our family has a kid-swapping arrangement with another family. They have two boys who are each within a couple of weeks in age as our two boys. Every couple months or so, our families take turns taking all four boys for a weekend.

This past weekend was their turn to take all four boys. This made us sans-kids for the weekend.

Of course, if you have read this blog over the past couple of days, you know that one of the things we did was brew some beer (see Brewing the Laser Salt).

But we also did some other stuff.

For quite some time, I've been wanting to check out Dad and Dude's Breweria. Dad and Dude's is a little brewery / pizzeria close to where I work. I've heard really good things about their pizza crust, which they make from spent grain from their brewery.

Friday, I dragged my wife to the Breweria, and we were not disappointed.

You know how when you hear how awesome a movie is, you are usually disappointed when you see it?  Well, the pizza crust was not like that at all. The pizza blew me away, and the crust in particular was absolutely the best I think I have ever had.

The beer I had was really good too. I drank a Hoparazzi, which is black IPA that "Dude" makes. Of course, I thought it was really good. I don't really remember what the wife had, but she liked hers as well.

Drinking at Dad and Dude's
Saturday started out with an incredibly quiet house. It is always amazing how quiet and peaceful things are when the boys are not with us. It is sort of eery really, but nice as long as I know the boys will be back.

I made breakfast for my lovely wife, and then we brewed some Laser Salt. Of course you know this.

As I mentioned in the Laser Salt article,we went to Stomp Them Grapes to pick up some Clarity-Ferm.

The outside of Denver Beer Co.
Then, we hit another brewery I have never been to but always thought I should try, The Denver Beer Company. There, we got a sampler of 6 beers. I thought they were all good, but none really stood out to me. The Beer Model really liked a beer called "A Barrel Full Of Belgians".

Our beer sampler at Denver Beer Co.
The Denver Beer Company got pretty crowded by the time we left. They are in a great location to get lots of people coming in to drink their beer.

My wife and I at Denver Beer Co.

After Denver Beer Company, we found Strange Brewing Company. Yet another brewery that I have wanted to go to but never had. Strange was much harder to find and not nearly as crowded. It has a tiny little tasting room, but a huge selection of beers.

The outside of Strange Brewing Co.
All the beers were good. I really liked their Cherry Kriek. This time, my wife didn't come across one she thought stood out.

Our taster platter at Strange
When we went home, we finished up pitching the yeast and Clarity-Ferm in our home-brew. We played WII and did other fun activities.

Sunday, we had breakfast at Denny's. My wife had her usual. I had a meat-lovers omelet.

Then, we went up into the mountains a bit and went for a hike.

Apparently my wife thought it was cold.

Once she gets going, she starts stripping off some of her clothes

New Belgium advertisement.
The hike was close to where our boys were. We picked them up and headed home. Now, we have to return the favor.

Great Weekend.


  1. They make their pizza crust from the spent grain from their brewery? What a fabulous idea. Seriously. That *almost* makes me want to start brewing so I can have some spent grain from which to make pizza crust.

  2. Of course the May/June 2011 edition of Zymurgy has a recipe for spent-grain pizza dough on page 33. After tasting D&D's I'm going to have to try this out.

  3. Let's say I wanted to make spent grains without actually brewing any beer (hard to believe, I know). What would I do? Just take some grain, add hot water, and let it sit for a while, before decanting the water? What sorts of grains would I use? Wheat? Barley? Rye? Quinoa? Special beer-grains? Should it be whole grain? Cracked? Milled? Ground? Not ground.

  4. Interesting question. Do you have a home-brew shop close to you? Basically you want to do a mini mash. For this, you need some malted barely. You could play around with different types of specialty grains, but at the very least you need a base pale malt. The grains should be craked either at the home-brew shop's mill or you could just use a rolling pin at home. Heat 1.5 to 2 quarts water per pound of grain to around 155 degrees F. I would put the cracked grains into a mesh bag and place that bag in the water. You want to keep the water somewhere between 145 and 160 for about an hour.

    1. The liquid left behind is wort. It is sweet and I would think you could use it in something ... maybe even instaed of the water in the pizza dough.

      Keep in mind, wet warm spent barley can sour pretty quick. You want to use it that day or store it in an airtight container at fridgerator temps. Also, the typical spent grain recipe that I have seen does not use a whole lot of it. I think the rule of thumb is about half the flour (at most) is replaced by the grain.

  5. Another option ... call your local home-brew shop and ask if you can take a cup or two of spent grain from them next time they brew an all-grain batch. I would be willing to bet they would give you as much (more than) you want.

  6. Looking at microbreweries nearby right now. Thinking I might be able to beg a cup of spent grain off of 'em if I go for a tour.