Taco Mac Contest

20120723_182124

Here are our 4 contest entries for the inaugural Southern Brewer’s Challenge sponsored by Taco Mac and Atlanta Brewing Company.

Counter-pressure bottle filler

Just like the immersion chiller, I decided to build a counter-pressure bottle filler, rather than buy one. The main thing I wanted was all stainless-steel parts, no brass and nothing containing lead.

Parts arrive…

20120707_195915

Some assembly required, but nothing difficult.

Here’s the finished counter-pressure chiller. Mine is all stainless-steel and I saved about $40 building vs. buying.

20120712_223636 20120715_185304

Here are a few pictures of the counter-pressure filler in-use. It works very well.

20120715_184146 20120715_184131

Brew Day – GPA

Pictures and text forthcoming – we promise!!

 

 

Kegging the Cream Ale

Wish there were more and exciting pictures, but here’s the only one we took during kegging.20120609_133714

Nice work, JT!

Brew Day – Vanilla Cream Ale

It was time for something new…something light…something both refreshing and relaxing…and something for summer. It was time for a vanilla cream ale.

JT boiled up the water. Soon we added grain. Then we kept a mighty boil for an hour as the worty-goodness and hoppy smell filled the air. The color was perfect.

20120511_132327 Img_0907
We experimented with a double immersion chiller in an ice bath for the cool down. It seemed to speed up the chilling process greatly.

Img_0912 Img_0914

Here’s the final wort before we pitched the yeast.

20120511_154201

Brew Day – The Maple Wheat Experiment

We brewed a 3-gallon batch of a wheat beer with a hint of maple. Yessir, we done did.
I wanted to create a refreshing wheat beer, but with a hint of something other than citrus, which is what all the craft wheat beers seem to have. A friend suggested maple and soon an experimental recipe was created.

Had to start off with a picture of the brewing setup…

Img_0889

Here’s a picture of Eric, while we were waiting for the wort to boil…

Img_0885 …then we added the hop pellets…

Img_0887

Then we added the chiller to the boil (to sterilize it)…and then to chill the wort to the yeast pitching temperature range.

Img_0894Img_0888
The final product. Now we wait.

20120325_181429

20120325_181453

Chiller build

Rather than purchase a copper immersion chiller, I set out to build one. I figured I could build one to my specifications for about two-thirds of the cost of a pre-made one. I purchased a 50-foot spool of 1/2″OD (3/8″ ID) copper refrigeration tubing from Lowe’s for about $85. [Note: copper prices were near their peak and the price has since dropped].

Using a 5-gallon corny keg (perfect size), I wrapped the coil tightly around keeping about a foot from each end uncoiled.

20120224_155401 20120224_160323

I then slipped the keg out and had a finished coil.

20120224_160503

Next I had to bend the ends to form the chiller input and output.

20120224_163943 20120224_172911

Finished coil. All I had to do to complete this chiller was to add high temperature hosing and clamps. The total cost of my chiller was just under $110. If you can find a pre-made chiller made from 50′ of 1/2″ copper for under $130, I’d like to see it. And it works like a champ!

Tagged