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

A productive spring

Fraz Wheat, Frosty Dog, Amber, Chasseur de Bruin

Man, it’s FINALLY warming up here in chilly Minnesota. It has taken so long to get to this point that coincidently I had a lot of time to brew these past few months. Further motivation was provided by the fact that my wife and I will be going to Europe very soon (my first time), and I don’t anticipate having much time to brew until maybe late-June, but more likely not until mid-July. As a result, I hit it hard in March/April, having brewed something crazy like five batches in seven weeks. Considering I did a total of only eight batches in all of 2010, this spring has indeed been quite intense.

I just bottled two batches this past Saturday, a first for me to bottle twice in one day. It probably takes me about three hours per batch, start to finish. A majority of this time is devoted to sterilizing the bottles via the dishwasher. The bottles are already clean at that point, so I just use the extremely hot water from the washer to sterilize them. That way, there is no chance of any sterilizing agent getting into the finished product (a little of which wouldn’t necessarily be bad for you), no matter how small the amount. It takes more time and I know I’m just being a clean-freak about this, but I just feel better about my beers this way.

Here are the four batches I’ve bottled in the last month, representing my output from the last weekend in March through mid-April:

By the time we get back from Europe, I will have 12 different types of homebrew ready and available for consumption. I’m already set for summer and am going to use this to start brewing ahead of season so I can have seasonally appropriate homebrews available for consumption in season.

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