Happy HolidaySs Giveaway - Last Sponsor Giveaway of the Year!

Come Enter the BrewDeals/FastFerment Giveaway!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Shameless Rants and Confessions of an Aspiring Pro
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 11-22-2012, 04:50 AM   #1
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default Shameless Rants and Confessions of an Aspiring Pro

I've been really wanting a place to vent about beer to people who understand...beer.
I want to be able to talk about my frustrations, victories, whatever I feel like. This first post is a bit of a rant.
I was inspired by Mjdonnelly68 and his wonderful thread "My Year in Beer" (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f45/my-year-beer-298708/) and am finally getting around to starting my own thread. I find blogs to be somewhat pretentious and would prefer to write in this format.
I am a senior at Georgia Southern University. I am a Communication Arts major, and a writing minor. Needless to say, after a couple years I discovered 'communication' is a steaming load of rhetorical crap. If I want to be content I need to find something else to do. I love writing, but I hardly consider it to be a stable job choice.
I'll skip some of the boring details and get to the point. I found brewing almost two years ago and love everything about it. I love the science. I love the amount of building, and hands on work involved. I love the comradery. I am normally very shy, I have trouble talking to people without a specific reason to do so. Some days I worry I won't be able to meet new people effectively after college, when 'adulthood' begins. But with professional brewing, this can never be the case, someone will always be there to belly up to the bar and have a pint with me. I love beer itself. I love the community. So full of positivity, culture and festivity.

I am a full-time student with a thin wallet. I get $75 a week for food and entertainment. The majority of my battle brewing-wise is my my budget. Not having an income makes it really difficult to put out 10-30 gallons a month. I skip a couple meals a day to fuel the brewery (yet somehow I still have managed to gain weight, damn beer calories!). Repairs on boot-strapped gear have been killing me lately.

I have been scrapping together a system over the past couple years, I am lucky to be surrounded by sceney bar-owners who are willing to sell me keg-shells and generous local homebrewers. I brew on the back patio of my crappy apartment. No cover sucks, it rains down here almost every day. The outlet outside doesn't work and there is no spigot. I run a hose and an extension cord out the window.
rainy-brutus.jpg

I got my stand super cheap ($200) all stainless! I dislike the lower tier, it's too low to support another pump (not that I can afford one). My stand needs wheels with brakes as well. But she makes great beer regardless. I do a direct fire recirculation mash and ferment in carboys in a temp controlled freezer.

I have a huge base of supportive friends and family. They always want samples. I just drove to Atlanta today with 80 bottles of several different kinds of beer. I really wanted to have beer to show off and rushed a few batches.
1121121505.jpg
Chocolate Hazelnut Porter- I won a Rogue kit in a brewing competition and refuse to use extract, precrushed grain, and poorly stored hops. So I decided to just use the hazelnut. Blah, Slightly undercarbonated, brewcraft hazelnut extract made the beer worse.
Galaxy Vienna Lager- Didn't get enough lagering time, but man is it tasty (Galaxy, Simcoe, Tett dryhop!)
Mild-been in the fridge a couple weeks and is over-carbonated. Should be great warm and flat. but is past it's prime.
Munich Dunkel- Got plenty of lagering time, but I used German Lager X. I'm not a huge fan.
American Light Lager- I made this for my dad. He is a Coors man and rarely drinks my beer. I wanted to make something impressive for him to take with him on a hunting trip. But figures, when it counts, I gotta screw up. I wanted maximum lagering time, so I waited until last night to carbonate. I managed to flip the wrong switch on my co2 distributor and the beer didn't carbonate as planned. I needed it today, so force-carbonation was the only option. Great, now all that lagering time is wasted. I waited as long as I could before I bottled, but the co2 hadn't fully absorbed into the beer. I'm fairly certain the beer in the bottles are flat-ish. I brought the case up regardless. My dad asked about his beer and I told him what had happened. I got the "I just hope it's got bubbles" and "that's your product, it better be 100%" comments. The beer tastes wonderful, but it has gone from well-meditated crystal clear lager to murky and flat. Maybe I'm being too hard on myself, but perfection is expected and I failed.
Blues aside, I plan to post up about every beer I make. If you'd like a sample of pretty much any beer I talk about just shoot me a PM and I'll send a cold one your way (you gotta cover shipping though)

On a more positive note, I got a call a few weeks ago, an amateur homebrewer in the area (who owns several restaurants) just got his federal brewing license and wants me to head up the 15bbl brewery. I am wary, I have only talked to him over the phone and haven't seen any physical evidence. I've been told he has the money though, so fingers crossed.

__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-19-2012, 12:09 PM   #2
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Sorry I have taken so long to update. Finals and Pro-brewer happenings have distracted me greatly.

My Galaxy Vienna Lager and Munich Dunkel both took awards this week at Max Lagers First Annual Homebrew Competition. I judged for the first time, and look forward to judging more. I was glad to see my autonomous scores were always within 5 points of the National-rank BJCP judge at the table. I love being reaffirmed that my palate isn't terrible, because I often fear it is.


I have been progressing with my financiers. They have purchased a few 30bbl fermenters and brite tanks for me to play with! I have also moved my brew system to a garage, so no more rain or wind to slow me down!

30-bbl-1.jpg

They will be arriving in January. (Sorry the pic is sideways, it is formatted oddly)
Of course we need somewhere to put these beasts so my financiers are also working out getting a building. The one they are in the process of buying is a whopping $700k! I am beyond stoked. There are apartments above it, so I will be living above the brewery and working on a 15bbl system as Head-Brewer. I am currently developing recipes for the company. I had never dreamed someone would foster my passions quite like this.
We have our federal and local brewing licenses. Our state will be in soon. As soon as the website launches and we have official media I will reveal more about the brewery. Or I may remain anonymous so I can say what I want. Idk yet.

__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-27-2012, 09:12 PM   #3
EnjoyGoodBeer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Posts: 418
Liked 16 Times on 15 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Congrats man im envy. I love everything about beer. If I could do that for a living I would love getting up every morning for work.

But how life works I see that as much as me "trying to make it as a rapper". To bad because thats my only passion I have in life.

Keep it up and brew some good beers I would love to drink them!

Best regards -James

P.S. I don't want to be a rapper.

__________________
EnjoyGoodBeer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-28-2012, 03:22 PM   #4
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Thanks. I feel you on the rapper thing. I intend to pursue my professional career as far as possible, but I don't intend to ever be a starving artist type =P Damn reality.

Suppose I'll continue my rant.

-Had Sam Adams White Water IPA yesterday, while they aren't my favorite brewery this particular beer is great. Aroma hop is quality, smells/tastes like a a cascade/chinook or cascade/mt.hood combo. The base beer is excellent as well. Wonderful billowy head, and lacing down to the last sip.

-While it is small to some homebrewers on this site, it's huge to me. Got my first pallet of grain for recipe development (albeit, not full pallet) This is also my first shipment from my commercial ingredient supplier.forklift-grain.jpg (Don't worry I'm not in the photo =P)

When the brewery launches we expect to have 3 flagship beers with seasonal and special releases coming soon after. I've been hammering down a really nice pale ale, may go classic pale ale (Cali I, Simcoe, Centennial, Cascade) or may go with one a bit more off the wall (German Ale, Crystal and Citra hops).
I am unsure as to what the other two flagship beers will be yet, I really want to put my Munich Dunkel out there.
I am pushing my financiers for a sour beer barrel program, while it isn't in the works yet. I suspect it will be soon.
__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-02-2013, 07:36 PM   #5
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Had a Petrus Aged Pale Ale for the first time. Blew my mind.
0102131357_0001.jpg
Lemon Rind and Oak. The selection of sour locally is very limited. I got this one from Five Points Bottle Shop in Athens. (~3 hour drive). I sampled my flanders red. Sour and tannic, but I will give it 12 more months (18months total) I intend to blend it with a 2-4month version.

I brewed the last batch on my boot-strapped brutus system, a little Northern English Brown with a really interesting malt bill. I hit 90% efficiency so I got a free keg of mild out of it. Due to mill breaking down I reset anticipated eff to 75%. I threw a few pounds of homemade apple-cranberry chutney into the mild.
I will be brewing pilots on a 26 gallon tippy dump system for the brewery. Still haven't got building, but hopefully will in the next 30 days. Going to start work on an IPA and a not-hoppy third flagship beer.
IPA Pilot Ideas: Classic West Coast Style IPA, Double English IPA, White IPA, or Wild Citra IPA.
Not-Hoppy Pilot Ideas: Munich Dunkel, Chocolate Robust Porter, Belgian wit, Lemon Wheat, English Brown Ale.
Ideally I want a tasty quick turn around English ale, real German style lager, and off the wall wild/sour for my first 3 beers released. Maximum Variety.

__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-11-2013, 07:57 AM   #6
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Alright, shameless bump

http://www.eaglecreekbrewingco.com/

Site should be operational very soon.

We've trenched the floors and started painting the walls! Conicals and Brite are expected in on Saturday.

Still shopping for a 15bbl brewhouse if anyone wants to sell us a nice one!

__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-16-2013, 05:15 AM   #7
blawjr
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Statesboro, Georgia
Posts: 259
Liked 6 Times on 6 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Looking good!

__________________
blawjr is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-20-2013, 09:17 PM   #8
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Tanks took until Monday to arrive.
downsized950219131445_0001.jpg
This is just one of the three shiny 30bbl fermenters. We were supposed to get a brite with the shipment, but we were told that it wouldn't fit. Lo and behold there was 16ft of empty room on the truck. We suspect they still had beer the brite and couldn't move it. We'll be sorting that fiasco out soon enough.

But hey, Tanks are here! They are beauties too. All the welds look clean, and the fittings are all GW kent stuff. Really nice heavy butterfly valves, rotating racking arm, PRVR, sample valve, blowoff assembly.

__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-26-2013, 12:55 PM   #9
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Got my ticket and airfare to the Craft Brewers Conference in DC

__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-27-2013, 06:30 PM   #10
Thundercougarfalconbird
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: , GA
Posts: 783
Liked 22 Times on 18 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

Brite Tank is in. Been breaking down and cleaning the used ball valves all week. We are seriously considering a GW kent brewhouse.

cold-end.jpg

__________________

The best beer I ever made was the next one I brew.

Thundercougarfalconbird is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply



Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Aspiring Meader torahanjyuu Introductions 1 05-03-2010 11:45 PM
Aspiring Hop Grower has some question fat x nub Hops Growing 9 09-08-2008 03:50 PM
KC Aspiring Home Brewer jdp213 Introductions 2 08-16-2007 05:13 AM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS