Join with us on our adventure as we build East Alstead's first brewery and what is quite possibly the only off-grid commercial brewery in the United States. We feel that what we brew and how we brew it are equally important. If you would like to help out with this project, contact me at:

The Belgian Mare Says Hello!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Roofs, Cellars, and Flowers

New shelves ready for their finish.

Still hammering away on the building.  And still without a chimney.  Hopefully this month will see the installation of the chimney and we can get to work testing the boiler. In the meantime I have been working on  painting, shelving and cellar doors.  The shelves are coming along nicely.  They are constructed entirely of 1"x12" pine boards and finished with a mixture of pine tar and beeswax. The mixture gives a nice luster finish that is waterproof and slowly gives the wood a honey color.

I have also built both doors for the cellar.  Quite a task if one happens to be working alone.  I did manage, and even got one hung.  It was an adventure hanging that first door.  I got it in place only to discover that it was rhombohedral! Everything was parallel, just not square.  Not sure how I managed that, but a little trimming and it went in just fine.

The other door is nice and square. It  needed another coat of paint and has to have about 1/8 inch shaved off the width. Hopefully, tomorrow it will be hung and we will have a cellar that can be closed!
One cellar door!

 On the down side, we suffered some storm damage to the house and had new roofing put on.  That ate up most of the ready cash, but it had to be done.  It was hard to sleep with water dripping on the bed.  In spite of all that has been going on, I took some time to stop and small the flowers.  I suggest you do the same. Cheers!
The wildflowers seem to like the slope behind the brewery.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Lager Update

A bit ago I tried a new idea with my "New England Cream Lager" recipe.  Instead of my old standby, Kent Goldings, I used Chinook hops instead.  We have cracked more than a few and the results are very good.  It is a crisp, full-bodied, refreshing lager with  a strong malt backbone and hop character that starts with a citrus flavor and ends with a strong bitterness. Excellent!

The only downside, is that the lager did not clarify very well and produced curiously large amounts of sediment in the bottle.  But, given the excellent flavor profile, are these really defects?  If it bothers you, close your eyes, I say!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Thunderstorms, Paint, and Disappearing Caulk

As many of you already know, we here in Alstead have been hit hard by the recent spate of thunderstorms.  Twice I have been up all night monitoring flooding in various locations.  Such is the life of a small town fireman.  Fortunately, our town had no injuries and any damage was simply material.

All of this had slowed down work on the brewery.  In fact, it has rained every day I have had off for just over three weeks.  But that did not stop me.  Working between storms I manage to finish the siding on the back of the brewery and paint the fascia boards front and back.  I have also managed to get some trim work done on the interior.

One down spot did occur.  I caulked the big window on the  back of the brewery.  A few hours later we were hit by a big storm that resulted in me being called out on flood duty.  A couple of days later I was back at the brewery working and noticed that the aforementioned window had not been caulked.  "Strange," I thought, "I could have sworn that I had caulked that window."  Then I looked closer.  I noticed white streaks below the window.  Then the realization hit me, I had caulked the window, it was just that the caulk had melted in the subsequent heavy rainfall.  I guess that whole "cures in two hours" thing on the label was just a guideline.

Check out the photos below for our latest progress.  


The front looks lots better with the fascia painted.  Wood to the left, lumber to the right...

Still not done on the ladder, but things are looking up.

A look at the interior trim and the sales area.