Golden Solera 2022

>> Sunday, July 10, 2022

Finally, a new brewing post! First brew of 2022 and first brew since November of 2021! I've mentioned in a couple times, but I've been working on a kitchen remodel project that's finally wrapping up, so it's time to brew some beer!

Today is a another 10 gallons of my Golden Sour Solera. I'm bumping up the grain bill a little and using different base malt for this round. See the last version here.

12.0# Weyermann Barke Pilsner Malt
3.0# Spelt Malt
56g Aged Hops (60 min)
Yeast Nutrient
Inland Island Brett Barrel III

Mash at 160F. Collect  ~10.0 gallons, then top up to ~12 gallons. 90 minute boil, ferment at room temp.

Water Profile
50/50 blend of carbon filtered tap water and RO water.

Brewing Notes
Thankfully no issues during this session, especially since I considered myself a little rusty. I may have cur my sparge a little short (~9.5 gallons), but post-boil gravity came in same as the last batch. I'm fermenting this at room temp in a half barrel Torpedo Keg with a floating dip tube. When ready, I'll be able to push it straight into the Solera barrel for extended aging and souring. Here are this session's key readings:

Brewing Readings
Beginning mash pH 5.28
Ending mash pH 5.32
1st running gravity 20.5 (1.083)
Pre-boil gravity 9.5 (1.037)
Pre-boil pH 5.58
Post-boil gravity 11.2 (1.044)
Post-boil pH 5.64

Update 7-11-2022
I went to check and fermentation is super active this morning. As I mentioned, I'm fermenting in a half barrel Torpedo Keg with a floating dip tube. In order to vent CO2, I connected a gas quick-disconnect with a short section of 1/4" tubing that runs into a cup filled with sanitizer.  

Update 7-18-2022
Activity started decreasing about 3 days in, but there’s still some activity today; about a glug per minute.

Update 7/30/2022
On 7/27/2022, I transferred 10 gallons from the Solera barrel onto a combination of homegrown sweet cherries from my buddy Brandon’s tree, sour cherries from my tree, and dried Montmorency cherries for a total of about 30 pounds of fresh fruit (3#/gallon). I’ve used dried zante currants before in a Consecration clone, but this is the first time trying dried cherries. My thought process is even though you’re adding sugar with fresh fruit, the amount of water in fresh fruit usually ends up diluting the finished beer. By adding dried fruit, I should be getting fruit sugars without dilution. 
Also, the 10 gallons of fresh beer from this session wasn’t enough to top off the barrel due to angel’s share losses, so I brewed up another 10 gallons on 7/30 that’s currently fermenting. OG on the last batch was a little higher at 11.7 (1.046) and will give me enough to finish topping off the barrel plus some extra for future topping off.