I have been thinking of making and bottling this combo for a while now. I am talking about a cyser. For me it is one that is kinda like a braggot (at least as far as how often I make key components). When you are only making certain boozes once a year it puts a bit of a damper on how often you are able to make different combos. With the fermentation space I am hoping to add to the brewery, I am hoping to remedy that in short order. But I digress…
I normally keep my meads as stills and make my ciders sparkling. In this experiment that is putting a damper, I think, on the flavor profile a slight bit. I will say though, that other than that, this combo is bringing out the best in both worlds. The inherent sweetness of the mead (even in a dry mead) counterbalances the inherent acidic tartness of the cider. This mellows the over all flavor out a little bit allowing other nuances to shine through (ooo big word that, nuances). I think the best part of this sampler though, I am mixing as I drink so I get to explore how different ratios affect the overall flavor.
This does bring to mind, I am not always a fan of mixing different beers to create new flavor profiles. But, in the end, there are times when the mix just works. What do you find that seems to make a great combo?
Ponder that while I finish my pint…
I have started cracking open the saison now. I dare say the choice to referment in the bottle and carb it like a champagne fits perfectly.
The beer itself finished quite dry. And with it being only about 4.5% normal carbonation would not have given it quite enough body. The higher level of carbonation gives it a bit more bite and a more pleasing effervescence that fits perfectly.
In other news, I will be taking the cider to secondary tomorrow. I am thinking that I will most likely hit it with oak at the same time and then let it sit on oak for 3 to 4 weeks. Wow, too much to drink, too little time.
I believe I will now finish this pint…
I made a self realization recently. Brewing can be compared to writing (if you look deep enough you can come up with your own analogy). When I am making big beers, meads, and ciders, I am brewing novels. They take a while to finish and require care and patience. Small beers are like short stories and novellas. They don’t require as much of a time commitment to bring them to completion.
I believe it was Hart Johnson who took this analogy a bit further recently. She went so far as to compare different beer styles to different story themes. You can tell quite a bit about a brewer by what they brew and how they brew it.
There is a story in every pint. What does it tell you?
Speaking of pints … I think I’ll find one
The new seal for the freezer door on the kegerator project (wow, that seems a mouthful) is now in place. After working with a hair dryer to bring the seal back into proper shape I now have a well sealed freezer. Everything is plugged in again and coming down to cooler temps.
The next step in this project will be to pick up a CO2 tank so that I can begin carbing up in this unit. This will mean I am transferring my picnic tap between kegs for a bit. But it is a start to having full service taps.
Soon I will have the current mead inside to chill out and clarify a bit more before I bottle it (yeps, I still have been a bit of a slacker when it comes to bottlings that need to happen). Mind you, I did manage to get the Saison bottled.
While on that subject, the Saison finished around 4.5% and is in (as I mentioned) bottled. I am conditioning it in the bottle, it should end up roughly around champagne carbonation levels.
The next liquid project will be another mead. I am considering adding some agave nectar to this one. The more I play with the agave the more I find I enjoy what it brings to the table.
Enough of this, its time for beer…