Monthly Archives: February 2011

Brewed Slowly: #11 Poacher Valhalla* IPA

Boy, have I been a slacker. The last beer I posted about brewing was the fall beer, but I’ve made two beers since then. So but let’s just skip ahead to the beer I made last weekend. I’ll call it #11 but it’s technically #13. Lucky #13. A little bit of background on this beer: Ben and Scooter (who are 2/3 of Poacher (the band I’m the other 1/3 of)) thought that we should have a Poacher beer. And I thought: C’mon guys, that’s just AWESOME. But what I said was: OK, I can do that. So we decided that an IPA would be most representative of the band. (Cue pretentious synesthetic music/(tastes?))

Will I ever get tired of IPAs? Probably not, especially when there are so many bad ones that I try that are talked up as good ones. But why talk about bad IPAs when I’m hoping to make a good one. Right? This IPA was modeled, to some extent, after the Dogfish Head IPAs in that the beer was hopped continually throughout the boil (every 10 minutes). But because I don’t have one of those awesome vibrating football board games, I just periodically dropped in more hops during the boil. If there’s an American standard of IPAs, I imagine Dogfish Head owns the proverbial copyright.

So isn’t this post supposed to be about a beer I made?


1 lb (0.45 g) Briess Rye grain

3.15 lbs. (1.42 kg) Gold extract

6 lbs. (2.72 kg) Organic light extract

3.25 oz. (92 g) Warrior* hop pellets

1/4 tsp Irish moss

Wyeast 1272 American Ale II

Here’s how it all went down.

1. Steeped the rye grain at 150F for 30 minutes. Sparged, removed, and brought the liquid to a boil.

2. Added 28g (1 oz.) of the hop pellets and the Gold extract to the boil

3. After 10 minutes, added 7g hops


4. After 20 minutes, added 14g hops

5. 30 minutes–7g hops

6. 40 minutes–14g hops

7. 45 minutes–added Irish moss and 6 lbs Light extract

8. 50 minutes–7g hops

9. 60 minutes–14g hops. Then put the pot into an icechest full of snow (it’d snowed here about 4/5 days earlier and we still had quite a bit in the yard).

10. Pitched the yeast when the wort was below 80F.

OG: 1.069

Just so you know that I’m being completely honest (and if you’re not familiar with brewing and measuring beer gravity, just ignore this), this original gravity is based purely on math rather than what I sampled from the wort. Because I made the mistake of not mixing up the wort with the 3 odd gallons of water that I topped it off with before I pitched the yeast and took a sample to measure. Basically, I pulled about 4 oz. worth of water heavy/wort light  liquid from the top of the fermentor and thought I’d take an accurate reading. Needless to say, I was surprised (but shouldn’t have been) when it read 1.010 OG. But when I put the figures into more than one beer calculators (I mean, why didn’t I hear about these in math class?), I came up with a gravity of 1.066, so that’s what I’m sticking to.

coolin' down

The Poacher beer is currently in the fermentor, and I’ll transfer it to the secondary probably this weekend–we’ll see.

Long Time

Well, it’s been like just about forever since I’ve last posted. Since then a lot’s happened. Found $10 in a jacket from last winter. Got seriously into Guided By Voices (the band) and Lost (the TV show). Read Ulysses. Gave up the Internet for a month. Got back onto the Internet after that month. Did not post on this website. So why post now? Why not.

I’ve made a few beers since 10/18 (but I doubt I’ll backtrack and post about them (but then I may be convinced)), and I’ve tried a handful of beers that I should’ve posted about but didn’t. Do I have excuses? Possibly. Are they good ones? Not really. Do they matter to you, reader, who stopped buying into the whole inner-monologue/Q&A horseshit about as soon as it started?


So if there’s a point to this post, it is (arguably) this: I am here. I still like beer. I will still write about drinking beer. And, hopefully, you’ll still come here to read about me drinking beer.

Also, I have new beermaking toys on the way (surprises. surprises? surprises!), so, in ways, I’m (we’re) moving on to beer grad school. The admission process was fair and completely unrelated to GRE scores (which, what a racket anyway. Ask anybody.) and was completely facilitated by eBay. Be us good little capitalists.

Basically, I’m fixing to start brewing all-grain recipes, and I’ll continue reviewing beers for the enjoyment of all who want text accompaniments for their beer drinking good times. So, really, nothing much has changed, and typedslowly is back up and running. Grab a beer or get out of its (typedslowly’s) way, fool.