Currently, I'm tapped out! The last beer I made was the German Pilsner which was brewed back in February. I wasn't able to keep stuff cold during the move or after, and the beers I had just did not hold up with the temperature fluctuations and general age (over 6 months). Additionally, the new house is lacking power receptacles in the dedicated brewery area. I currently am running an extension cord from the other side of the unfinished basement to power my kegerator as a stop-gap until I can get electrical installed.
I hope to brew this upcoming, but I need to do a bit of planning. Brewing in a new space always presents some challenges so I will use the rest of this post as a checklist to help identify and remediate any potential problems in advance to make the brewday go smoother.
New Brew-Space Checklist!
- Weather - Until I can get the all electric setup going inside of the basement (monetary donations welcome!), I will be back catching some sun in the great outdoors for my brewing (no garage at the new house). While this isn't a huge issue, weather was something I had conveniently forgotten at my rental due to the garage. If its raining I may have to postpone things.
- Utilities (Water and Fuel)
- Where will I get my brewing water from? - I don't have a potable hose, so it looks like I will need to fill up carboys in the kitchen and lug it downstairs and outside for my mash and sparge water. There is a spigot for chilling and cleaning water outside already, so that will make clean up easier.
- Do I have enough propane? - I have one tank that is low and a mostly full one connected to my grill. I should have enough for a brew, although there may be need of some regulator switching
- Electricity - Sometimes I use a pond pump to recirculate icewater through my immersion chiller to get temps down into the 60s. I hope my extension cord reaches!
- Salts, Cleanser and Sanitizer
- Do I have all necessary mash salts? Need to check on this one, think I have gypsum, CaCl, and campden. Should be all I need as long as I have acid malt, which i think I do.
- Do I have enough cleaner? - I know I am low on PBW, and I will most likely need to pick some up. I know i always have some C-Brite from my first kit I never used in a pinch.
- Do I have Sanitzer - Luckily, I know i have an ounce or so of Star San left, as well as an unopened 8oz. Good to go here!
- Random items - I think i need more fermcap-S as it has been out of the fridge for 3 months
- Brewhouse Tools - Are all thermometers and refractometers calibrated? Are my scales accessible? Are houses/racking canes clean - maybe I should just "snap myself off a fresh piece!"
- What style and what recipe? - This is always a big question mark if I havent brewed in a while. Inevitability it will be something of medium to low ABV and leaning towards the hoppy side - maybe that session IPA I have been dragging my foot on!
- Do I need ingredients I don't have in stock? - Once you have your recipe, make sure you have all the ingredients for it. I have had my yeast sitting at room temp for 3 months. The dry yeast is probably ok, the liquid yeast most likely is very low of viability. May need to pick up yeast based on recipe.
- Fermentation Control - This is usually not a problem, but because of the move and my lack of power, I will need to figure out how I am getting power to my ferm chamber. I may need a new extension cord if I can't determine how much power is available off of the circuit the current one is on.