2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog… it was obviously a very quiet year without a single post since February :-/

The plan is to start regular brews again in 2015… fingers crossed.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 700 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 12 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Homebrew: When is a bottle day not a bottle day?

When it’s a keg day!

So, the original plan was to bottle my latest homebrew batch. Last Sunday (09/02/2014) the beer was ready to go. The gravity had dropped from 1.044 to 1.012 and there had been no activity for at least 48 hours. All was good thus far…

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Extract Brew #4: Whitbread Mackeson Clone – Take 2

The first thing I noticed, when I opened my homebrew notebook to begin planning my latest batch, was that my last brew day was in July!

Anyway, for my first brew of the 2014 I decided to revisit the recipe I have for Whitbread Mackeson Stout. The main reason being that I had some issues with the temperature during fermentation last time.  Which I believe caused some off flavours.

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5 Fictional Beers I Want to Try

Ok, this is a bit of a silly post. But hey… what’s life without a bit of that every now and then. Also I’ve not done any homebrew for months, so I’ve not got too much to talk about.

Whilst reading of the different beers that I would like to taste, I started daydreaming of the fictional beers I would love to try.

I’m not talking about trying the beers which have been inspired by those from the small screen. No I’m talking (well… writing) about trying the actual fictional beers. To sit in Moes with a duff or in the Drunken Clam with a Pawtucket Patriot.

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Beer Nostalgia: End of Prohibition Picture

Ok this one isn’t an advert, but I found this to be quite a interesting picture.

Taken around the time that Prohibition in the USA was abolished. Not sure of the exact time and location:


End of Prohibition: The 18th Amendment was repealed on December 5, 1933

To quote Homer Simpson (after Springfield’s own Prohibition ended),

Beer: The cause of, and solution to, all of life’s problems.


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Consistent Homebrew Beer: Bitterness from Hops

Hop cone in the Hallertau, Germany, hop yard

Hop cone in the Hallertau, Germany, hop yard (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m not much of a fan of big hop flavours in beer. This led to a monumentally stupid mistake on my part – not paying much attention to hops when home brewing.

Yes, I use hops in my beers, but I have never fully appreciated or given hops the right amount of respect. That’s changing.

I think part of my ill-placed mistrust or disinterest in hops came from the current hops/alcohol arms race going on between some brewers. I’m sure you know what I mean. Brewers that seem to chase the “World’s Most Hoppiest/Strongest Beer” accolade. The title that seems more  marketing gimmick than anything else. 

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Jan Harding

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