Smaller is Faster
I racked my gallon of Mosaic IPA (it's really substantially less than a gallon) to my secondary and dry hopped with more of the eponymous hops.
I had to wait longer than I would have preferred to move out of primary because, silly me, I didn't have a suitable vessel to act as my secondary. My beer was in fermenting before I realized, “Hey, I need another one-gallon jug.” Somehow this didn't occur to me when I was fitting out my new miniscule brew house.
Therefore, I had to obtain another gallon jug. Quickly. My local home brew store was not open when I visited it – that was a fun trip with two kids on a blazing hot day. And my eventual internet purchase took a lot longer than I wish it had. In short, another argument for planning ahead and ensuring that you have everything you need prior to your brew day. I should really listen to my own advice.
This is not only my first one gallon batch, it is also my first single hop beer. I am really very curious to see how the Mosaic performs through all phases of this brew. Simply put, Mosaic is an incredibly appealing hop. I like its brightness of aroma and flavor and it has a decent amount of alpha acid (around 12%), which should make it a reasonably effective bittering hop. So it should bring a lot to this beer.
Once I finally had all my equipment and got to work, I was struck by the ease and speed of small batch brewing. Each task is so much simpler with a smaller volume of beer.
Racking out of primary was a breeze. My beer was into the secondary in approximately three minutes. I threw the airlock on and was cleaning up in a jiffy. The whole process, from sanitizing to sitting on the couch with a beer, took about 15 minutes.
The same was true with bottling. First of all, my maximum volume is only 128 ounces. My actual working volume, due to trub loss and boil off, is more like 120 ounces. I'm not good at math but even I know that's only 10 bottles of beer. So not only did I need an infinitesimal amount of carbonating sugar – less than half an ounce, in fact – but, here again, everything was accomplished in no time.
Cleaning and sanitizing that few bottles is so much more manageable than two cases worth. And bottling itself is, like racking, that much quicker. From start to finish, sanitizing, carbonating and cleaning up took about 45 minutes. A snap, really!
At one gallon, everything is faster … everything, that is, except carbonating. Alas, I still have to wait a couple of weeks for my beer to be ready.Last modified on