Saturday, March 14, 2009

Exiled Update Special Edition: SHREDDING!

Okay, so the Facebook Nazi's took down my video, I guess cause it had a backing track.  Like I am really costing some band any kind of money.... *sigh*  Well here it is on the blog, in all its glory!  Toby and I TOTALLY rocking Sierra.  Well kind of rocking.  Actually I guess more like soft rocking.  But we had fun!  This is film from last year and last week pasted together! Enjoy!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Exiled Update SPECIAL: We are in Costa Rica Edition

Hey everyone! A surprise internet conncetion appeared when I decided to turn on the the netbook just for giggles. Turns out Ricky installed a new connection in the hotel today, and now I am able to blog from the patio overlooking the beautiful Carribean Ocean. The picture I have here I took with the cpu webcam, and it sort of blows, but given that I am here, and you're there, I think we can all agree that I am doing pretty well.

It has been another typical lazy day here in Cahuita, somewhere between Limon and Panama. We awoke around 0700 hrs with dad banging on the door, summoning us for coffee at TK and Michelles new suite. A leisurely breakfast followed as the sun started to bake the rain sodden path to the area of the beach we swim at. All along the way there are leaf cutter ants, sloths, lizards, an occassional bright yellow VERY deadly snake, and of course, beggar monkeys. Little bastards.

Sarah is snoozing now, and I am gazing over the screen at a picture perfect white sand beach, palms swinging in the breeze, reggae music blaring from downstairs. Life is grand, no doubt. Cheers!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Exiled Update #12 - Bottling Crazy Willie Light Ale Edition

Two weeks has finally passed and this morning the wife and I bottled Mo-BumBum Farms second edition to its growing beer family "Crazy Willies Light Ale" named for my schizophrenic cat. Seriously, he meows at things that aren't there. It started off a bit rough when I added the sugar to the carbouy. An immediate explosion of foam took me a bit by surprise, but fortunately it subsided rather quickly, with out a huge loss of the product. I've got a few shots from the process here.
First off what you see above is the Oxyclean and hotwater bath formula relayed to me by brother-in-law, Rabbi Awesomepants. In a little less than hour all the glue and labels simply fall off. No manual cleaning require. Awesome.

This next step is the bottle washing. I got a clever little device that you can use your SanStar in. Press the bottles down a few times and a spray of sanitizer coats the entire thing. I like to rinse them with water before I actually bottle though.

Here we see the carbouy and the bottles, ready for the process! I got smart this time and sat down a little lower than the cabinet height to aid in the siphon speed. After I got the siphon going that is. I hope I didn't aerate the heck outta the first few bottles...
I started off with the bottling part, but the capper proved a little too much for Mrs. Libby, so we switched places. In no time at all we had the bottles filled and capped!

MMMMM.... beer. Here you see my sample for specific gravity measurement. This beer clocked in around 7% ABV. A bit high per the recipe kit, but my stout was also about three points higher than predicted. Either I am doing something wrong (or right!) or I am not sampling from the right area and getting too much particulate matter. If my experience with the stout is any indication though, the ABV is accurate!

Finally, here is a video of me capping the one Stella bottle I had to use. This time there was only one... with my last batch it was about 20! We're going to have to drink more brown bottle beer before we are ready for the next batch! We'll know if we've succeeded in two weeks when we get back from Costa Rica!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Exiled Update #11 - Dumbest Holiday Ever Edition

Sarah was reading in the paper today that this year consumers will spend about 17 billion dollars on valentines day related non-sense. That marks a relatively severe downturn from last years 20 billion. I read last year about valentines day being the biggest holiday in India after Diwali. Does anyone even know what we are celebrating?? The Hallmark folks left that one out of the advertising blitz.... There are several posited excuses for this lame ass marketing mess, mostly involving besotted Roman priests and army graft. No matter how you slice it, its D-U-M-B with a capital D. Spend spend spend... you might get a goverment backed bailout.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Exiled Update #10 - ITS REALLY BEER Edition.

WOW. Okay, so am now officially in love with beer brewing. I popped open a bottle a couple of days ago, and here, in the glass, are the results!
I can't believe I actually did it! I had nightmare visions of drinking pee flavored cider. It turns out that I made a beverage which tasts suspiciously like a stout ale. It definitely needs a few weeks more to age, but the carbonation seems to be good, and the cidery sweetness evident just a few days before is entirely gone!
Sitting in a carbouy right now is my next attempt. This is a light ale, the "Crazy Willie Light Ale" to be precise. One day Mo-BumBum Farms will roll off your tongue as easily as Stella, SierraNevada, or dare I say it, Pabst. For my third attempt I'll be making a red ale. I got a turkey fryer burner now, hope it speeds up the boil process...

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Exiled Update #9 - Beer Update Edition.

The transfer into the secondary fermenter went well, no contamination this time I hope! Thanks to Rabbi AwesomePants for beer label removal recipe. We'll keep you updated! Bottling next week!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Exiled Update #8 - Inaguration Edition

Did anyone else hear the collective sigh of relief as 12:01 PM EST rolled by and we didn't wake up??? I don't think he's superman, but PRESIDENT Obama at least gives me hope that this country can reclaim its rightful place as a morally upright nation. We have the power to change our energy use, our treatment of poorer nations and to improve our own civic mindedness. I am actually hopeful for the first time in 8 years. When that helicopter took off, it was like it was really truly finally over. Here's the USA!!!