Many of us at Fifth Season enjoy multidisciplinary hobbies, and few hobbies integrate better than brewing and gardening! While growing, harvesting, and malting your own grains may not be for everyone, there are numerous plants, berries, and herbs that the homebrewer can add to their garden and, later, to their beer. Hops are the obvious first choice, and much has been written about the cultivation of hops, including on this very blog. Properly cultivated, hops can have extremely high yields, … [Read more...] about Brew What You Grow
Here at Fifth Season we do our best to contribute to sustainability and energy resource management, yet as an avid homebrewer I’ve always felt a touch responsible for not exactly having the most environmentally friendly hobby. At times I think about how much water, alone, I’ve used before I began streamlining my process, and yet I could definitely cut my water use even more so. Multiply that by all the less environmentally conscious homebrewers, and that’s a lot of needless environmental impact. … [Read more...] about More Sustainable Homebrewing
June 19th, Father’s Day, is fast approaching, and what better way to let the big guy in your life know that you appreciate him than hooking him up with some brewing equipment or ingredients? Whether you’re helping a seasoned brewer expand his arsenal, or introducing your father figure to a rewarding and fulfilling new hobby, Fifth Season has the stuff and know-how to help you choose an awesome Father’s Day gift. Equipment Kits There’s no better way to [re]introduce your father to beer … [Read more...] about Father’s Day at Fifth Season
For our blog post this week, we’re doing something a little bit different. In celebration of National Homebrew Day last month, Ethan in our Carrboro store created a hop-bursted pale ale featuring Mosiac hops. This beer has a bright aroma, with hints of white grape, mild citrus, and subtle floral notes. It was so tasty, we thought we’d share the recipe with you – enjoy! Mosaic Single Hop Bursted Pale Ale Batch Size: 6 gal Assumed Efficiency: 78% Target OG: 1.049 Apprx. Alcohol: … [Read more...] about Mosaic Single Hop Bursted Pale Ale
Cider has been gaining popularity in recent years and is experiencing a boom in artisan and craft production. This spike in attention has resulted in a concomitant rise in interest among home beverage makers. Home cider making is easy, fun, and produces delicious rewards. This refreshing beverage is great for those times when you want something light and crisp, with a touch of acidity balanced by sweetness. Cider is also great to have around when you know someone who has a gluten sensitivity or … [Read more...] about Dry-Hopped Cider…From a Kit?
Those of you who have recently visited your local homebrew shop in search of liquid yeast have no doubt noticed that one of your favorite brands has a different look. White Labs is slowly transitioning from the thick plastic vials that you’ve always used to a new, sleek, fancy pants white pouch that they call PurePitch®. This new packaging will completely replace the vials for all strains, eventually. So, I bet all of this has you wondering ‘What’s different about the PurePitch®?’ and ‘How does … [Read more...] about Pure Pitch: White Labs’ New Look
Do you have a stuck fermentation? A beer that stopped fermenting and you don't know why? Maybe it was active for a day or two and stopped all together for a week or more? In that case, you need to take a sample with your wine thief, and measure the gravity of the beer in a test jar with a hydrometer. If you do so and the hydrometer reads something that is very high in gravity, or brixx/balling, you may have a "stuck" fermentation. Something happened to halt fermentation in your beer, and … [Read more...] about How to deal with a “stuck” fermentation
Brewing during the summer presents a unique set of issues for home brewing enthusiasts, especially those in the southeastern United States. The ambient temperatures are conducive to only a select few yeast strains, high humidity plays with your boil off rate, and ground water temperatures make chilling your batch a huge pain. So, with summer upon us, get ready to crank the AC, play the guesstimation game, and pull out the ol’ wort chiller. Whether you’re working with a classic immersion chiller, … [Read more...] about Wort Pre-Chillers: How effective?
Liquid yeast is simultaneously one of the more rewarding and frustrating products that homebrew retailers work with. On the one hand, carrying liquid yeasts allows brew shops to offer their customers an extremely diverse selection of fermentation options, cater to very specific needs, and greatly expand the potential for batch-to-batch experimentation. On the other hand, liquid yeast is a low margin product, has a relatively short ideal shelf life, and it's difficult to stock what everyone would … [Read more...] about Liquid Yeast: How old is too old?
It never ceases to amaze me how reticent many brewers are to use whole cone hops when presented with the option. In the era of IPAs and heavily hopped beers, every brewer should have the full repertoire of hop products available to them and at their disposal. That being said, I felt it would be helpful to discuss some of the differences between pellet hops and whole hops, so that deciding between the two doesn’t have to be challenging. Regardless of whether you’re considering whole cone hops … [Read more...] about Hop Pellets vs. Whole Hops