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Today we brewed 12 gallons of a California Lager, inspired by Anchor’s version. Ingredients are 23 lbs of two row and 3.5 ounces of Cluster hops. This old school approach is gaining a serious foothold these days. Homebrewers are finding out that simple recipes help you evaluate ingredients and yeasts unlike a more complex recipe. In simple terms, this is a classic SMASH brew, (single malt single hop).  We are using a WLP 810 California Lager for 6 gallons and WLP 029 Kolsch yeast for the other 6. We are hoping that a cooler fermentation will help the style and get us to where we would like to be.

cal lager

It was a simple brew and almost everything went right. However, we were shooting for a 151 degree mash temp and missed low by 2 degrees. Only time will tell whether this will be a bad thing. The beer might be super dry, but who knows, this might be good.

We also kegged our Kolsch and Blond from previous brews. We tasted our aging Berliner weisse (not ready) and our barrel aged barley wine (maybe ready for kegging).

Lastly, we popped open a few bottles from our collection and did a little “quality control.”  This was fun…

Most of the beer tasted great and it was great to taste what the judges had commented on all spring and summer.

We even tried some of our Barleywine.

bottle caps

We also received ribbons for three beers we entered into the California State Fair:
cal state fair 2013

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