Tuesday, February 13, 2024

2024 Mardi Bock (Batch 351)

I brewed in the garage this past (Super Bowl) Sunday.

We got a decent amount of snow again on Saturday, and so the back patio (where I usually like to brew) was covered, and I took advantage of the slightly warmer garage for brew day.

This is my 3rd batch of 2024. It's my 351st batch all-time. This is the 69th time I've brewed in my Anvil Foundry.

After Sunday, I've actually brewed this recipe (with minor tweaks, I'm sure) 4 times.

The day this posts will be Shrove Tuesday, aka Mardi Grad, aka Fat Tuesday, aka the day before Lent, and so it is an appropriate time to brew the  seasonal beer ....

I got started sometime between 6 and 6:15 Sunday morning. 

I usually like getting the water ready the night before and set the Foundry to start heating up in time for me to be ready to go when I get up.

I just didn't feel like it Saturday night.

Sunday, I got the water in the Foundry and mashed in at about 130 degrees or so. I set the temperature to 154, and let the Foundry bring the grains up to temp over 15 or 20 minutes.

I guess you could sort of call this a "Congress Mash". Sort of.

I mashed until just before 8am, which is time to get to church.

Right before we left, I lifted the grain basket to drain and set the temperature to 190ish so it could heat while I was away.

When I got back from church, I squeezed out wort from the malt pipe and then set the Foundry to raise the temperature to boiling. 

My pre-boil gravity was a little low, so I added table sugar to get back on track. NOTE TO SELF ... change the brew house efficiency on this recipe for future batches.

For whatever reason, it took quite awhile to get from 190 to boiling, but the boil itself went well.

Chilling also went well. This is certainly a nice advantage to brewing in the winter ... chilling is much more efficient in colder weather.

The yeast had been harvested from Said Strumpet Czech Pale Lager (Batch 350), and I grabbed enough recently enough that I didn't think I needed a starter. 

I pitched at around 55 degrees, and the fermentation took off before the next day, so apparently there was enough healthy yeast to get going.

As is my typical lager process, I'll let it ferment the rest of this week in the 50's and then unplug the cooling pump and have it finish out at ambient temperature.

If I have space, I'll have this beer kegged and chilling by the 24th of February.

After cleaning up, I was able to get out on my bike for a little less than 2 hours.

Then, it was time to start preparing Super Bowl food.

I probably made too much food considering it was just my wife and I watching the game together.

But, I don't mind left-overs.

Even so, I ate too much watching the game. But both the wings and the poppers were delicous.

It was a pretty good game, although I really didn't want the Chefs to win. I didn't particularly want the 49ers to win either, so I can't be too sad. 

I just don't like seeing the Chefs as good as they are.

I just realized that last year on Super Bowl Sunday, I brewed Mardi Bock, went for a bike ride, grilled chicken wings and poppers as well. I guess it's tradition.

Anyway ...

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Go Blackhawks!

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