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Batch Management

Well, it’s February, and so far I’ve only made three batches of beer this holiday. However, I’m about to start brewing a lot more, and that means I need to empty out my fermenters and sort out my kegs.  I’m currently bulk aging stuff in four kegs, which really cuts into how much beer I can brew at a given time. However, I really must admit that some of that bulk aging isn’t really necessary anymore. I believe my cyser is ready to be bottled, for one thing, and that I ought to do the fining on my keg of bokbunja melomel as soon as possible too. (Not only because I feel like I should get the mead as clear as possible quickly and bottle it, but also because I feel like it ought to be about time to enjoy it now… plus, it’s cold out, which makes clearing a brew or mead easier. So I’m doing up a schedule in pixels, to help me wrap my head around what I need to get done the next few days; the fact I’m sharing it is just a way of throwing light onto the more mundane aspects of brewing, like managing one’s fermentation, aging, and serving vessels. Here are the brews and meads I have aging, and what needs to be done with them:

Bulk Aging or in Need of Blending, Needs To Be Dealt With Soon:

Bulk Aging: Should Be Dealt With This Month:

  • Wonmisan Oldboy : this is sitting in my 3G carboy, and has been for about 7 months. (Which supposedly is okay with Brett.) Needs to be racked to bottles, to free up the carboy for a Biere de Garde, a Berliner Weisse, and so on. 
  • Womisan Bokbunja Melomel: this has been sitting in a keg for a long, long time. Needs to be cleared with gelatin and bentonite. An in-line filter would be nice, but would necessitate bottling from a keg. (And not from the keg it’s in now.) It should be bottled still. Therefore need a stabilizer, ie. something that prevents oxidation… maybe.)
  • Wonmisan Birthday Cyser: This has been in the keg since about April, and is likely read to be fined (if necessary — the little I put into bottles cleared up nicely just with refrigeration) and racked to bottles. Some will be still, some will be carbonated. The still mead may need a stabilizer to prevent oxidation.
  • Wonmisan Super Sekrit Ale: I’m not sure what to do with this: as a “wheat beer,” it’s very plain, but it’s not bad enough to dump. Thinking of using it in blending, as it seems to blend nicely (at a proportion of about 3:2 Lichtenhainer:Super Sekrit) with my Lichtenhainer — lending it an invigorating sweetness it seems to otherwise lack (and which brings out its sour and smoke qualities). But I can’t see mixing in more than a gallon at most, since the Lichtenhainer is getting pretty empty… so what about the remaining beer? Should I keep it on hand for blending? Spike it with fruit? I’m thinking it over…
  • Wonmisan Bokbunja Sour Ale: This is still upstairs, with a nice pellicle on top of it. I pitched some Brett C. and it’s also fermenting with wild yeasts. Only 1 gallon, so it can be bottled. If tasty, the dregs should be pitched into something. I should deal with this one soon.
  • Assorted 1G batches of mead. 
Bulk Aging But Doesn’t Need to Be Dealt With:

Fresh Beers Needing Serving Kegs:

I was trying to do up a schedule for everything I need to do, but it got really confusing just doing it as text. I’ve done up a table, instead, and it seems to work better… now, if only I can keep to the table and do all the things I need to do in February! (See below for the table!) Oh, and Miss Jiwaku and I did the blending experiment, and found that, for our palates, the following blends work well: Lichtenhainer / Sooper-Sekrit Ale:

Fruitcake Ale / Fenian Raid:

I will likely eyeball it, when it comes time to actually blend, but knowing the approximate ratios is a big help. And now, the crazy table!


Brewing Tasks
Date Brew Task Free Kegs (Running Count) Free Carboys (Running Count) Done?
Feb 3 – Step 1 Miss Jiwaku’s Old Ale Bottled. +1 = 1 0 Yes
Feb 3 – Step 2 Wonmisan Sour Pale Ale Racked onto Old Ale dregs in keg. -1 +1 =1 0 Yes
Feb 3 – Step 3 Wonmisan Lichtenhainer, Wonmisan Super Sekrit Ale, Wonmisan Fenian Raid, Wonmisan Fruitcake Ale Experiment with blending ratios of first two and last two together. 0 1x6G Yes
Feb 3 – Step 4 Wonmisan Brunner Racked into empty keg. -1 = 0 +1 =1x6G Yes
Feb 4 – Step 1 Wonmisan Gratzer Brew it! (using spare 3G fermenter) 0 1x6G Yes
Feb 4 – Step 2 Wonmisan ESB Rack to secondary. Save yeast cake (wash!) for Barley Wine. 1 1 +1 -1 = 1x6G Yes
Feb 4 – Step 3 Miss Jiwaku’s Holiday Stout Bottle remaining beer from keg. +1 = 1 1x6G Yes
Feb 4 – Step 4 Lichtenhainer / Super Sekrit Wheat Ale Blend & Bottle 2 +1 = 3 1x6G Yes
Feb 4 – Step 5 Fruitcake Ale / Fenian Raid Blend & Bottle 1 +1 = 2 1x6G Yes
Feb 6 – Step 1 Wonmisan Silvered Moon Barleywine / Mild Brown Dog Brew them! (Partigyle, fermenting one in a bucket.) 3 1x6G – 1x6G = 0 Yes
Feb 7 – Step 1 Wonmisan Oldboy Bottle. 3 +1x3G = 1x3G NO
Feb 8 – Step 1 Wonmisan Bokbunja Melomel, Wonmisan Birthday Cyser Add finings to keg. Add oak to Wonmisan Bokbunja Melomel. 3 1x3G NO
Feb 9 – Step 1 Wonmisan Gratzer Rack to secondary. (If ready.) 3 1x3G NO
Feb 10 – Step 1 Wonmisan ESB Rack to empty keg. Dry hop. 3-1 =2 +1x6G = 1x6G & 1x3G YES
Feb 10 – Step 2 Wonmisan BPA Rack to secondary. 2 1x6G, 1x3G YES
Feb 10 – Step 3 Wonmisan Bokbunja Melomel Add bentonite. 2 1x6G & 1x3G NO
Feb 11 – Step 1 Wonmisan Mittelfruh Metheglin, Pomegranate Melomel, Mint Metheglin Bottle from 0.75/1G fermenters. 2 1x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 11 – Step 2 Wonmisan Sour Agent Secret Saison Bottle from 2G fermenter. 2 1x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 11 – Step 3 Wonmisan Sour Bokbunja Wheat Ale Bottle from 1G fermenter. Save dregs, wash yeast cake. 2 1x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 13 – Step 1 Wonmisan Gratzer Cold Crash and rack to bottle or keg. ? 0x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 13 – Step 2 Wonmisan Mild Brown Dog Rack to Secondary 3 -1x6G = 0x6G, 1x3G YES
Feb 13 – Step 3 Wonmisan Birthday Cyser Bottle 1/s sparkling, 1/2 still 2+1 = 3 1x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 15 – Step 1 Wonmisan Berliner Weisse Brew it! 2 -1x6G = 0x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 15 – Step 2 Wonmisan BPA Rack to keg. 3-1 = 2 +1x6G = 1x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 17 – Step 1 Wonmisan Mild Brown Dog Rack to keg, force carb for meetup on the 18th. 3 -1 =2 +1x6G = 1x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 17 – Step 2 Wonmisan Bokbunja Melomel Bottle from keg, if sufficiently oaky. 2 +1 = 3 0x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 18 – Step 1 Brewers’ Meetup! n/a n/a 0x6G, 1x3G NO
Feb 21 – Step 1 Wonmisan Quadrupel/Dubbel partigyle Brew it! 2 – (1x6G & 1x3G) = 0 NO
Feb 23 – Step 1 Wonmisan Berliner Weisse Cold crash & Rack to keg. Inoculate with Brett B. 2-1 = 1 +1x6G = 1x6G NO
Feb 27 – Step 1 Mittelfruh Metheglin (5G batch) Brew it! 1 1X6G NO
March 2 – Step 1 Wonmisan On a Jag Abbey Dubbel Rack to secondary 1 -1x6G +1x6G = 1x6G NO
March 16 – Step 1 On a Jag Abbey Dubbel Bottle. 1 1x6G NO
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