The day after bottling my first batch of beer, I cooked up another. This time, I decided to make a chocolate maple porter from the Brooklyn Brew Shop Beer Making Book. While you can buy the mixes from the Brooklyn Brew Shop directly, I visited my local brewing supply shop, Brewcraft, to get the ingredients. 

I walked in with my list, told the man what I needed. He measured everything for me, and then milled the grains.

“What percentage of alcohol are you shooting for?” he asked.

“6.5% I think,” I said.

“How much beer are you making?”

“One gallon.”

A look of confusion. Then understanding. “I guess that makes sense. Typically people make five gallons. And with what you’ve got here, you’d end up with a 1% beer.”

One thing he recommended with the amount of grains I had was to use a cheesecloth. As this would eliminate the need to separate the grains from the wert, I decided to give it a shot.

The cheesecloth worked just fine. The only issue was squeezing the 150 degree wert from the ball.

Overall, it did make things a bit easier, and I was left with a beautifully colored wert. But I felt somewhat unsatisfied with the cheesecloth compared to a full pot of unadulterated mash. So I might forego it next time.

Other than the cheesecloth, the process was the same as my first batch, with a couple changes to supplies. First, I bought a larger measuring cup and larger funnel. Second, I bought One Step to replace the C Brite that comes with the Brooklyn Brew Shop kit. I felt a lot more comfortable with the One Step, as it didn’t have all the warning that C Brite comes with, and it was no rinse. Also, the Brewcraft clerk assured me it was fine to stick my hands in it.

After four hours of brewing, I had another batch. My porter will hang out in a cabinet till it’s ready for bottling in two weeks.

Go yeast!