Searching for the line between "hobby" and "obsession"

CUJO SPICE Pumpkin Ale

Friends Jim and MaKenzie came over to help me brew this batch on a Friday night, and honestly we got a little drunk on some good craft brews (apparently the delicious Alfrenzo pizza from Fat Lorenzo’s didn’t offer enough sustenance) so the details are as hazy as this beer turned out. Also, some friends in town stopped by as we were in the process of transferring this beer into the primary fermentor and I got a bit distracted. I almost started to boil the priming sugar for bottling! Whoops. Did I mention already we weren’t sober for this brew day?

What I can tell you:

  • 1 oz. Mt. Hood hops and some brown sugar went in along with the extract at the beginning of the 60 min. partial volume boil
  • Two 16 oz. cans of pumpkin puree went into the boil in the last 5 or 10 minutes of the boil. The puree had been cooked in the oven at 350 degrees for 5-10 min. with some pumpkin spices per suggestion from the recipe. Alternatively, I could have taken a real pumpkin, core and cut it into cubes and bake those the same way and toss them in a nylon bag into the boil for the last 5 min. but that sounded like a lot of work.
  • 1 oz. Cascade hops and probably 1/4 cup (maybe 1/3 cup??) pumpkin spices that came with the kit and some I had in my cupboard went in during the last 2 min. of the boil.

Other than that, I ended up breaking the hydrometer during the last brew day so we didn’t take any gravity readings. OG should have been 1.042-1.046. Pitched a White Labs ale yeast that started up just fine in a day’s time. Got it bottled about two weeks later after a week in both primary and secondary. Cracked the first one on Halloween! Carbonated and ready to go.

I didn’t take any other gravity readings on this batch because I thought “what’s the point really if you didn’t have the OG?” I know now that I could have been monitoring it to see if fermentation had completed. Turned out great nonetheless. I’m almost out of this brew as I write. People were digging this batch. I’m thinking about doing a sweet potato version of this to be ready in October/November 2011, as I like sweet potato flavor a bit more than pumpkin when not accompanied by copious amounts of sugar and fat (aka pumpkin pie).

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One response

  1. Pingback: CUJO SPICE v. 2.0 – pumpkin rye beer « Barking Dog Beer

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