Noobie here, just opened the second bottle of Ale that went into bottles 12 days ago. I am amazed - I actually made something that worked. Worried, too - the bottle at 7 days old was only drinkable, this tonite was downright good. Looking forward to seeing what it's like as it ages.
Made Williams Triple Hop, but used yeast from my homebrew store since the yeast with the Williams came all puffed up when it arrived.
Was amazed at how it tolerated my mis-measurement: I fermented less than 5 gal, so when I racked to the secondary I topped it off with boiled and cooled water.
Bottle conditioned, and not only does it pfftt when I pop the top, it pours with a beautiful, creamy head.
My friend who sold me the equipment never bottled, always kegged, but I went ahead and did 22oz bottles (I have a source for them at $5 a case).
Brewed an amber ale yesterday, have it fermenting in the bathtub now (just in case of blowout, it is kinda warm...).
All this leads me to questions:
- Should I expect the beer to continue to get better as it sits in the bottles?
Is the creamy head (unusual for most pub ales hereabouts) a result of bottle conditioning?
What is this "off taste" I have been warned about from using extract?
If I need to top off after racking, do I have to boil and cool some water, or can I just use bottled water?
This is fun - already! And my wife is interested in helping now, and as soon as her training period at work is over and she's working regular-like, she wants to brew, too!
Thanks for your answers in advance!