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Dark Sugar Beers

I’ve brewed the last two weekends, and it has been great – I can’t really explain the long hiatus (1 1/2 months) other than I was busy with other things… But last weekend I brewed 10 gallons of my black honey ale (w/ 4 lb buckwheat honey), and yesterday was a 5 gallon batch of Queen’s Darkness IS (8 oz of molassas). The Queen’s Darkness came in at around 1.084 OG, and the Black Honey is something on the order of 1.065-1.068 (will back calculate when I keg it).

I repitched about 1/2 of yeast from the honey ale into the stout, and had signs fermentation within 2 hours. It is rocking this morning. I also used the product from American Hop Plugs yesterday, which How Do You Brew? is currently carrying, and I must say – I really liked them. I will definitely look at buying and using more hop plugs in the future. They are expensive ($3/oz), but the convenience of dropping hops into the kettle in 1/2oz plugs is really nice… and they smell very fresh. Joe and Marlana have lots of Hop Plugs inventory, so if you are a “whole hop” fan as I am, I would strongly encourage you all to check them out as a viable alternative. Its amazing that those little plugs expand so much in the kettle.

My next brew will probably be “Homegrown Ale 2007” or an American Pale / IPA. I’m itching to use my Summit hops in something, and I’ve got 2 lbs of Amarillo hops to play with. With all the dark stuff I’ve brewed recently, something on the lighter end of the color spectrum is probably a good idea too.

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