Just had my inaugural brew and I think everything went great! Got this bad boy below working away:
It is the Extra Pale Ale kit from Northern Brewer. Pretty excited about this one, we hit our OG right on the nose. I do have a question though: After we cooled the wort to pitching temp, I set up a funnel with a strainer in it to go from the kettle to the primary. This took forever to do because there was so much sludge in our wort. It definitely smelled like the hop pellets. But it kept clogging up the strainer so the beer was literally trickling out, then we had to dump the sludge from the funnel and then repeat. (We had to do this like 5-6 times!) Is that normal? And if so how do you guys handle this step as I'm sure there is a better way to do it. I thought maybe get another bucket, cheesecloth the top, and just dump it all in there so at least that would get a majority of sludge, then go from that bucket to primary. What do the experts think?!
In other news, we were obviously drinking while we were brewing and I was fortunate enough to have Cigar City Either Or and Guava Grove. These beers were amazing! I highly encourage anyone that can get them to snag them. Cigar City is awesome!