bells competition

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eriktlupus

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anyone get their wort from bell's today?
what are you gonna make?



doing an all michigan pale ale now. all homegrown hops to match their michigan 2row, chinnook and cascade.
 

Burton

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My first post on this board (have done a few weeks of lurking but no posting)... but yes, I am doing the competition... thinking about a Rye beer... but still browsing for ideas.
 

Burton

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It was insanity there. We got there right at 11am to sign up for time spots and got one at 1:40. I felt sorry for the suckers who showed up after noon. They had a 50+ person waiting list.
 
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The sig. other and I are brewing up our two 5-gallon batches as four - 2.5 gallon batches. Go big or go home!!!

maple ale w/ cream ale yeast
Imperial IPA
Pumpkin Ale
Caramel Apple Ale
 

Burton

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heylookasensai- I thought about that too, but they only give 4 labels for entry into the competition for each 5-gal... are you just planning on entering the two of the four that turn out best?
 
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heylookasensai- I thought about that too, but they only give 4 labels for entry into the competition for each 5-gal... are you just planning on entering the two of the four that turn out best?
Exactly!

my maple cream ale is fermenting nicely as we speak, and my imperial IPA is chilling down from the boil this morning.

any ideas as to what you're brewing?
 

Burton

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Exactly!

my maple cream ale is fermenting nicely as we speak, and my imperial IPA is chilling down from the boil this morning.

any ideas as to what you're brewing?
Nice! My rye pale ale was the original idea... I am starting to second guess myself,though, as the guy behind me in line was planning on brewing the same thing!
 
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eriktlupus

eriktlupus

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did up mine within 4hrs of receipt of the wort.
and no i'm not rrevealing my recipe yet


bells set up a 25th anniversary competition where they gave out 5g of unhopped wort to us.

winners of the comp get to brew their beer with the head brewer at bells and have it on tap in the eccentric cafe.
 

MetallHed

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I'm confused. So they give you just wort? So where do you go from there? How would you make it your own recipe if they already put their stuff in it?

:drunk:
 

Homercidal

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Dammit! I wish I'd heard of this! I totally would have run downstate to participate. Screw the kids' birthday party!

Did they at least tell you what the specs were for the wort?
 

JSomps6

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In my opinion, Bell's handled this poorly. I got there about 1215 and so people standing around with buckets and nobody really knew was going going on. About 1245 some dreadlock guy asks if I'm on the list. I said I didn't know anything about the list and he put me on the "waiting list" and said to come back about 3:00 to see if there was any left as they would only guarantee it to the first 100 people, then move to the waiting list. Disappointed, I went to the brewery tour, and came back around 2:00. I went around the back and asked the brewer who was filled buckets for people where they stood on wort. They were on #125 and I was #142 and he said it would be close. So I went and got in the line. 15 minutes later I heard there were no longer going in order and just taking people from the line. I think there were 12 people ahead of me when they ran out. I saw many people with a bucket for themselves, and their sig. other. Now i'm sure some of them were brewers, I'm doubting all the wives brew. So with these selfish people taking 10 gallons, it left none for me. So if you are one of these people, shame on you... It should have been 5 gallons per household. And it should have been get in line and wait, instead of come back at this time.

Sorry - had to rant. Just pissed I didn't get any.
 

Burton

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So how would you do a rye pale ale with pre-made wort?
I am debating whether I steep in separate water and combine, or just steep in the wort preboil. A bit unorthodox but I think enough of the rye character will show through for what I want.
 

Burton

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In my opinion, Bell's handled this poorly. I got there about 1215 and so people standing around with buckets and nobody really knew was going going on. About 1245 some dreadlock guy asks if I'm on the list. I said I didn't know anything about the list and he put me on the "waiting list" and said to come back about 3:00 to see if there was any left as they would only guarantee it to the first 100 people, then move to the waiting list. Disappointed, I went to the brewery tour, and came back around 2:00. I went around the back and asked the brewer who was filled buckets for people where they stood on wort. They were on #125 and I was #142 and he said it would be close. So I went and got in the line. 15 minutes later I heard there were no longer going in order and just taking people from the line. I think there were 12 people ahead of me when they ran out. I saw many people with a bucket for themselves, and their sig. other. Now i'm sure some of them were brewers, I'm doubting all the wives brew. So with these selfish people taking 10 gallons, it left none for me. So if you are one of these people, shame on you... It should have been 5 gallons per household. And it should have been get in line and wait, instead of come back at this time.

Sorry - had to rant. Just pissed I didn't get any.

It was pretty poorly organized for distribution. But everything they put out about the contest said signups began at 11am.

I totally agree about the one per household but it would be awfully hard to enforce. I'm just glad that they kept out the people who were pretending that they were on the list. That is what was pissing me off.

Sorry that you missed out! :( I thought the brewery tour was cool though! I got to meet Larry Bell and shake his hand. :)
 
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eriktlupus

eriktlupus

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yeah they did tell that signup was at 11am. and no i wasn't a double dipper except to have the wife sign a buddy up who went to the tour first. he was there to pick his own wort up though.

larry bell was in the cafe at @ 2pm taking pics with people(the wife was sitting next to him and didn't know who he was).

the brew was all michigan 2row pale malt at 3.5L and 1.047sg that was only boiled enough to sanitize it(my hot break was insane on this).
 

JSomps6

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It was pretty poorly organized for distribution. But everything they put out about the contest said signups began at 11am.

I totally agree about the one per household but it would be awfully hard to enforce. I'm just glad that they kept out the people who were pretending that they were on the list. That is what was pissing me off.

Sorry that you missed out! :( I thought the brewery tour was cool though! I got to meet Larry Bell and shake his hand. :)

Saturday, September 11th:
11:00 am - 4:00 pm: The Galesburg Brewery will be open to the public for tours.
There will be grilled food and soda available.
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm: Bell's celebrates homebrewers. You bring a 5 gallon carboy to the Eccentric Café, we fill it with cold wort made with our Michigan barley at no cost. Take it home, hop it, ferment it and send 2 bottles to us no later than November 1st for judging. Guidelines and more information available when you pick up your wort. There will be a limited amount, so get there early! Winners will be announced on All Stouts Day, November 7th. Limit - one entry per person.

I was there at 1215, expecting to get in line... I didnt see any of the stuff saying it started at 11AM, In fact, I didn't see anything saying there would be "sign ups."

Oh well... They grew the wheat themselves or something... probably an inferior product and I'm better off brewing something else. :)
 

boostsr20

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I don't get why they wouldn't just hold a homebrew competition for Michigan Only residents and pick style guideline. I don't see the real point in handing out Wort.
 

Calix_Meus_Inebrians

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Eek didn't see this thread till today, I was down there and got my wort. I made a Belgian Pale Ale, and did a small partial mash for additional adjuncts that filled out my grain bill.

While I was getting my wort I was talking to the guys that were doing the filling who happened to be the same guys that made the wort earlier that morning; he told me that they mashed at 151 for an hour, brought the wort up to 195 and held it there for 10 min then cooled. The grains were slightly darker than standard two row and should be about 3-4 srm; pre-boil gravity of 1.048 and that when they use it for beers onsite at the eccentric cafe he consistently gets about 82-83% attenuation if not higher.

I think it was just a big thing for their 25th anniversary, since bells frequently does some fascinating beers they didn't want to give style guide lines to see what eccentric brews they end up with and it doesn't seem to have any affiliation with the bjcp. I think it was an effort to also push their own barley they have been growing; all in all I think it was a neat idea that brought a lot of people out and had a lot of people buying home brewing supplies at their general store.

Did anyone get to try that '02 eccentric ale they had on tap?
 

Homercidal

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Got an Email from New Holland with a similar thing. Except there you get to actually brew on site and pitch yeast at home. They had room for 8 4-man teams. By the time I found 4 local guys the spots were all taken. Bummer.

We might go down there and hang out if it's open to the public (I think it's a demonstration) or maybe just do a local homebrew party ourselves. Maybe even a demonstration or something.
 

cuinrearview

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My take on the thing:

I am fortunate enough to be within driving distance to have been privy to the "un-published" rules so I knew to be there beforehand to sign up. Well, actually my wife went since I had to work until noon;). She had mentioned wanting to do a batch too but we decided that one was enough. I got the feeling that they probably got more response about this than they anticipated and that is why they kind of changed the rules. Dunno.

The Cafe was a mess when I got there. You could tell that people were confused. There were people in line and people just waiting (the wife, bless her heart) near the head of the line for the time slots to be called. It was pandamonium! Things will definately need to be made more clear next time. All of their rules stated bring 5G carboys, and I saw peeps with all sorts of containers. I wish I'd brought a keg as lots had due to their filling system.

So I finally get into the brew house and they just had giant hoses and funnels to fill with. You guessed it, foam city as it splashed into the carboy. Most, like me, ended up with only ~4 gallons of wort in our carboys. Man it smelled good though! As noted it was considerably darker IMO than what I expected an all 2-row wort to look like and mentioned that to a couple of other guys. This is where a keg would have been nice as to direct the wort to the bottom and get MORE :D . As stated before the guys that were filling answered any questions we had.

So I had to mash more grain then I had thought I would need to but I got through the brew store quickly and it was stocked with everything that I needed(for once). It was packed too! Everything went smoothly with the batch later that night and she's still fermenting like mad! I built it back up to five gallons and perked up the ABV slightly to make what I was thinking about making. It rides the line grist-wise between a black pale and IPA, but hopped to IIPA standards with all homegrown hops. I've never made a beer in this style. I've been talking with people about it and my final line is always "it's either gonna be awesome or really really suck". But I have no doubt it will find it's way through a tap in my kegerator so at the end of the day that's a win.

And I completely understand the sentiment of those that did not know about the early sign up. If I hadn't had a problem a couple weeks ago with my auto-siphon I wouldn't have had to stop by there(I don't usually use them) for a replacement and I wouldn't have known. And I was REALLY stoked when they announced this.

All in all I feel like I got to use my brewing brain a bit on this one. This was a unique concept and will be my first competition. With all of the unknowns up until the moment that the carboy got filled if I even make something drinkable I will be very happy.
 

scoobsean

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Well, I was the first guy in line and got there at 9.45, expecting it to be very busy. There were only 3 of us in line until about 10.45 and then it rapidly filled up the parking lot in the rain.
I got the very first batch of wort at 1.00.
I waited from 11.00 until 1.00 in the bar and had lunch too - so I expect they made a lot of money from all the folks waiting around (which perhaps was the idea).
I've made an Irish Extra Stout with a hint of coffee added
 

cuinrearview

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Wanted to bump this back up for the people that have entered. How did your beer come out? What did you make? Anyone planning on attending All Stouts Day to hear results?

My Hop Coffee was terrible last weekend. I was very unhappy with it. Then, I popped a bottle on Saturday evening and was pleasantly suprised to learn that it did a complete 180. I dropped off my bottles on Sunday. Out of 142 people that got wort I'd be happy to at least get some feedback from the judges from my first competition. I'll probably swing by around 3:00 on the 7th to hear what won.
 

scoobsean

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I dropped mine off yesterday. I've done an Irish Extra Staout with a small amount of coffee added at the end of the boil. It turned out pretty well - the coffee is very subtle. I think I'll show up for the results and sample some of the 14 stouts that they will have on sale.
 

Burton

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Mine was not doing so hot as of last week... hoping that it's had time to turn. I'll probably drop off on Thursday.
 

BearBrew

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I submitted a Scottish Export hopped like an American IPA.

Did anyone attend to see what won?
 

AdamWiz

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I know the guy that won. I believe he said it was an IPA, and he used some sort of crazy hops I have never heard of (from New Zealand I think). In fact, he still hasn't actually brewed it at Bell's because they had a hard time getting enough of the hops to brew such a large batch. Not a surprise that an IPA won, considering Larry is such a huge hop fanatic. I would have bet my life savings that an IPA would win. I was out of town, so I was unable to get wort, but hopefully they do this again some time and are better organized/prepared for a huge turnout. My friends who work there told me it was a total nightmare.
 

Calix_Meus_Inebrians

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The problem was that it was in the middle of the 25th anniversary so there were already a lot of people there. From what I hear the batch named Oscar's Folly was brewed already since they were able to source the crazy hops from New Zealand, I would imagine that it will be on tap sooner than later.

Although the question as to who won was posted over half a year ago, zombie thread!
 

AdamWiz

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Just heard that the winner, Oscar's folly, will be released at the eccentric cafe this Friday (May 27).
 

Homercidal

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Just heard that the winner, Oscar's folly, will be released at the eccentric cafe this Friday (May 27).
Hmm... by coincidence, I will be headed down that way to help the MIL with some more moving chores... Wife took me out this pass Saturday for my birthday, so not sure I can go again so soon, but we'll see. After a full day of being with her mother, she may be ready to go have a drink!
 
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