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Bonsai & Brew

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Bonsai & Brew last won the day on May 31

Bonsai & Brew had the most liked content!


About Bonsai & Brew

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    Black Hawk, SD
  • Interests
    Bonsai, Japanese gardening, beer-themed Haiku, and tagging Mr. Beer forum members that have not posted anything since 2012.

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  1. Bonsai & Brew

    Redwood Ale

    Has anyone brewed this one yet? The recipe looks great as is, but I'm thinking of partial mashing it with some Maris Otter and maybe a specialty malt or two. https://www.mrbeer.com/redwood-ale
  2. Bonsai & Brew

    Churchill’s brown ale

    @Cato is kind of going that way with his Wee Heavy Winston, but you need to join in the fun with your own recipe!
  3. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    Little did I know it at the time, but after brewing Lock, Stock & Barrel Stout and then waiting 9 months to a year before enjoying it was definitely worth it. Chartwell's has a similarly high OG, and with the amaretto/fig addition, it just seems like I should let this Old Ale get 'old' before tapping it. Good luck with your Wee Heavy!
  4. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    I bottled "Chartwell's" this morning at FG 1.013 and 9.0% ABV. Now, hands-off till Christmas morning...
  5. Bonsai & Brew

    Kettle Sour V1.0

    Hopadopoulos Pale Sour Ale won 2nd place in its category in the Belgian Brew Brawl (Austin, TX). 🍻
  6. Bonsai & Brew


    @Creeps McLane If hops are like most other plants, I would think that clipping the 'extra' runners would direct more energy to the ones you're training. Then again, you don't want to run out of fresh hops on brew day either...
  7. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    You guessed it -- it was that cute little 100 ml can prominently placed near the register checkout that sucked me right in. How convenient! I purchased 2 and used one to soak the oak while saving the other for an afterwork taste test.
  8. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    For the record, my knowledge of whiskey is quite limited, let alone those produced from rye. Optional Rock & Rye Baltic Porter Mr. Beer Churchills Nut Brown Ale, 2.86 lb. Weyermann Dark Munich, 0.5 lb. BrewMax Smooth DME Mr. Beer Pilsner, 0.25 lb. Flaked rye, 0.12 lb. Weyermann CaraMunich Type 1, 0.18 lb. Crisp Amber malt, 0.18 lb. Chateau Special B, 0.12 lb. Carafa II, 2 oz. by volume Patagonia Chocolate malt, 1 oz. by volume Sovereign, 5.3% AA, 0.56 oz., 30 min. Sovereign, 5.3% AA, 0.19 oz., 10 min. Optional: Light toast American Oak in Hochstadter's Slow & Low Rock and Rye Whiskey, added after primary fermentation Danstar Nottingham Cold-steep Carafa + Chocolate malts for a few hours prior to brewing. Mini-mash remaining grains for 45 min. @ 152 F. Sprinkle sparge grain bag with hot tap water. Add DME, heat to hot break, then begin 30 min. boil, hopping as scheduled. Add cold-steep liquor with 15 min. left of boil. Add HME @ flame-out. Chill wort. Transfer to LBK and make to volume. Ferment cool with Nottingham @ 58-60 ºF for the first 7-10 days, then allow fermentation to finish closer to ale temps. OG. 1.068 SRM 32 ABV 7.6% IBU 34
  9. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    I just got excited over finding an online boil-off rate calculator! LL Thanks for the above comparison -- I'm already thinking about 3-4 gallon mash-in-sack batches and both of these kettles would accomplish that nicely. If it does come to retiring my 8 and 10 qt. Tfal stock pots, I'm having a 'retirement' party at my house with free beer!
  10. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    What influenced your decision to get the SStech kettle over the Anvil linked here?
  11. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    From my experience, DME can be a pain if you try to do a slow, deliberate addition over a steaming kettle. This will result in a sticky mess and much frustration. Add it quickly, stir the floating clumps until dissolved, then keep a watchful eye for the hot break!
  12. Bonsai & Brew

    2018 Churchills Challenge

    It's what I had on hand, but DME really is quite easy to use. Just quickly dump it in pre-boil and stir to dissolve while bringing your wort to a boil. There is no need to freak-out over the inevitable clumps that form, but don't worry about it, they will dissolve quickly enough. PS Do not discard unfermented wort. Ever. 🍻
  13. Bonsai & Brew

    MUG MidWest Meeting #2

    Where should I send the beer? Haha.🍻
  14. Bonsai & Brew


    Then I found this on another forum and confirmed what I suspected about 'Golden:' "The garden center variety is a sport that was selected for its yellow leaf color. It was intended to be an ornamental that looks pretty on your fence.If you're serious about brewing don't waste your malt on it. Look for varieties that have been selected for their aromas or bittering qualities." Given my somewhat eclectic preferences for landscape plants with interesting foliage, bark, flowers, etc., this hop will fit right in with my Sunburst Locusts, Ogon Spirea, and Aurea moneywort. Contrasted against a backdrop of Scots pine blue-green needles, this could really create a nice effect. I love this stuff.
  15. Bonsai & Brew


    The question remains. Has anyone heard of 'Golden' hops? I'm hoping that something was lost in translation between grower, wholesaler, and distributor and that the hop I planted today is some variety of Golding.