Yay! We made it. Through the 4-week fermentation period that is. Kathy and I bottled our first beerious homebrew on Saturday.
We collected 46 empty beer bottles, sanitized EVERYTHING and got to work. The first thing we had to do was add the priming sugar solution to the wort/beer. The sugar provides “food” for the active yeast to eat up and naturally carbonate the beer.
Next we did what is referred to as “racking,” which is when you gently transfer the wort from the fermenting bucket into a freshly sanitized bucket. A layer of sediment consisting of spent yeast, live yeast and grain proteins called “trub” is left behind in the bottom fermenting bucket. During racking, you want to be careful not to let the trub mix in because, while harmless, it can make the beer flavor taste off.
Kathy is seriously rockin’ the racking here :)
After racking we attached the sanitized bottling tube to the bucket’s spigot and were on our way.
With the bottle cap affixed, this baby is sitting patiently for two weeks gettin’ all bubbly.
I’ll be the first to admit I don’t know much of anything when it comes to the history of beer and brewing. It’s one of the reasons I’m a Beerious Girl. Here to learn and share, people.
Most women might be interested to find out that we were the world’s first when it came to making the beer. Some beg to differ, but for the most part, everyone agrees the term for a female brewer is brewster. It has even been said that making beer might have come before the baking of bread! So beer is literally better than sliced bread.
There are many different stories, but all credit women as the ones who ruled the brew. It does make sense, but I’m a bit sad we were eventually overthrown by the big commercial beer makers.
The monasteries in the Middle Ages began brewing mass quantities for travelers and this is why many people credit them with the beginning of beer for the masses and not just the household. Furthermore, during the Industrial Revolution, men had a lot more free time. Thus, the tavern was born giving a space outside of the home kitchen to brew and sell beer as a way of life. Then women were referred to as Alewives and since the rules of the day took ownership of most things away from women, the taverns were owned by the men.
Alas, brewsters never completely died out and, actually, in the American colonies women continued to brew often adding things like pumpkin, corn, oats, honey, molasses and even artichokes. All of these ingredients remind me a lot of the reason I became interested in the making of beer and how all the different ingredients can be tweaked to produce many different flavors and styles.
I truly believe women are poised for a comeback in the brewing world and since we have more tastebuds than men I think it’s only natural in the craft beer world. Viva Brewsters!!