So yesterday I brewed up my first 'real' homebrew (having done kits at university but never really getting into it at the time). I brewed up an APA with some speciality grains (got a taste for the Cascade on a trip to SF
) and everything went pretty well as far as I can see (with the beer anyway), no boil-overs although the bastard tried.
One thing that has emerged is that my stove may be producing carbon-monoxide. At the end of the session (i.e. 2+ hours in front of the hob) I was starting to feel like I had a case of the flu. This only started to clear-up a couple of hours later and I felt rough into the evening. I'm arranging to have it checked out this week.
The other thing that emerged is that winter has come in rapidly in Sydney and it's colder here than I anticipated; the fermenter was showing ~14c on the strip thermometer (~60F) this morning and little sign of fermentation. I've ordered a heat-pad but it probably won't appear for a few days; is this likely to be a problem?
Regardless of all this, I'm heartened by I've been reading on this board. Part of what attracted me to brewing again was the 'hacking' aspect of it (I'm a programmer/sysadmin by trade and nature) and I love the pure intersection of art and science. However I've been pleasantly surprised by the community spirit I'm seeing here, the sharing of recipes and assistance. It's reminds me much of the best of the open-source community but run by adults