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> Callin' just cj, We need a report
chuck_d
post Apr 22 2009, 10:13 AM
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QUOTE(BrewingDan @ Apr 22 2009, 11:03 AM) *
Awesome,

You gotta toss us homebrewers a few simple recipes we can brew in honor of you!!!


Have you tried a JPA yet? I've been hording some 1026 to do it proper.
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Grizz
post Apr 22 2009, 12:39 PM
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QUOTE(chuck_d @ Apr 22 2009, 07:13 AM) *
Have you tried a JPA yet? I've been hording some 1026 to do it proper.


What about the 002, is the 1026 better? I'm going to make this pretty soon
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earthtone
post Apr 22 2009, 03:02 PM
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well the recipe calls for 1026 cask ale man....obviously if you want to brew this one authentic you need the same yeast!

002 is a fine english yeast, but the cask ale is the real deal to brew CJ's recipe. He raves about that yeast all over the boards (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/wink.gif)
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just-cj
post Apr 22 2009, 03:39 PM
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And if you don't have/can't get Cask Ale yeast, you can use either 002/1968 English yeast or S-04 dry yeast or even American/California Ale yeast (001/1056/US-05) and make a fine JPA.
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Oldfart
post Apr 22 2009, 11:16 PM
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QUOTE(just-cj @ Apr 21 2009, 02:08 AM) *
My wife is scared as hell, but because we have invested in the brewery as well (making me an owner-partner as well as brewer), things are going to work out.

Cj, many thanks for your in-depth reply! That's some kind of a gutsy thing you've done!!

Can't blame your wife for her concerns, though. Unlike you, she has probably read about this guy we have over here, Madoff, and maybe your boss has too...

As (perhaps) your wife sees it, you give your boss a box of pretty big money for the part ownership of the brewery. Come payday, boss reaches into the box and gives you some of your money back. The boss also buys a couple boats and a nice penthouse with a close view of Mt. Fugi, and some nice sparckly things for his wife. You bust your butt, money keeps rolling in enough to keep the Ponzi afloat, but finally your back is busted, you can't clean even one more keg. Business falls off, the box of money is empty. Bankrupt! Boss retires to the penthouse, you... well, it's just too painful to describe.

Or, could be that your wife and I are all wrong about this...

Anyway, congrats again, hang in there and stay in touch!

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cavman
post Apr 23 2009, 12:29 AM
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QUOTE(just-cj @ Apr 21 2009, 08:58 AM) *
I'll keep an eye on when our next container will be sent out. The boss is in the States now, schmoozing with the Shelton Brothers (our importer), but with the dollar to yen rate not in favor of exports right now, it probably won't be till later this year. When it does happen, though, the beers will definitely be the ones I've been grunting on. Err, that doesn't sound quite right -- they'll be ones I toiled over. (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/biggrin.gif)

Bryan Baird Brewing? If so I was going to go to a post CBC party tonight they would be at, figured Todd Alstom would intro me to everyone. When I seen a Japanese brewery there my first thought was does CJ know these guys?
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just-cj
post Apr 23 2009, 04:50 AM
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Bryan Baird is the man -- I hope you got to meet him! He's my boss and great friend -- as another friend used to always say, he's "good value." And, I do know a lot of Japanese brewers and breweries -- some day they'll know/remember me!

Oldfart, while I understand your (and my wife's) skepticism, my boss Bryan B is a good friend. I worked for him before part time and now I'm working full time -- yes, it's somewhat a leap of faith, but it's no ponzi scheme. For every hour I put in, the boss and his wife are putting in two. For every dirty job I do, the boss and his wife are doing two dirty jobs. This truly is a family business, and I'm part of the family -- I am more than 100% confident of what I'm getting myself into, and what the future holds. (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/cool.gif)
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just-cj
post May 8 2009, 07:53 PM
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Well, it's been about five weeks since I turned pro. The first week was just overwhelming -- talk about too much information. From the second week, I was put on "hyper-training," because the boss was going to the Craft Brewers Conference in Boston and I had to be ready to brew by the 20th. Super stress every day. But in the end, I managed to brew three batches during the week he was gone, two on our 250-liter system and one on the 1000-liter system. Since then, I've been doing everything at an accelerated training pace, and the past three days I brewed up three batches, plus assisted in transferring and packaging another couple of batches -- not to mention the cleaning. I'm brewing again tomorrow (Sunday) and probably three or four more times during the week. My level right now? Stress is down to 20%, confidence is up to 80%, competence up to 90%, and the beers I've made have all been fantastic (if I don't say so myself (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/blush.gif) ). I still haven't started designing our recipes, but that will be coming over the coming few months.

Things that surprise/intrigue me so far:

1. We pitch as much yeast as most homebrewers brew in a batch -- 20 liters for a big batch (big batch = 1000 liters, around 8 barrels).
-- 1a. We throw away more yeast from one batch than any of you brew in a month. Today I threw out around 10 liters on top of the 20 or so that I threw away two days ago. Tomorrow, another 10 liters or so will go down the drain, and there was probably some more taken out on about day four. For a single batch, we throw away between 50-80 liters, generally, and for a double batch we can brew two or three beers and still have 50 liters left over.
-- 1b. Even though it's the same yeast, it tastes completely different (yes, we taste the yeast every time we harvest or pull for throwing away) depending on the beer it comes from.
2. Glycol is the bomb!
3. Dry hopping for only 4-5 days, much less than most homebrewers do, I think.
4. I actually like bottling -- and kegging.
5. Hop diving at the end of the boil is hot, sweaty and sticky, and it's my favorite "dirty job." To hop dive, we have to climb into the kettle and pull out all the whole hops (no pellets for us) by hand.
6. There's a lot more -- and I do mean A LOT MORE -- to brewing than manning the brewhouse. And it's all part of being a brewer. Everyone always says to be prepared for a lot of cleaning, but cleaning (including sanitizing) is really only part of what goes on "behind the brewhouse."
7. Adding hops is even more fun than when I was brewing at home. When I made our Black IPA a few days ago, I added "only" around 200 grams for three additions and only 150 grams for the knockout addition, and I felt somehow cheated that I couldn't add more.
8. Being able to dump water/cleaner/sanitizer on the floor is just too convenient. The only thing we take pains not to spill on the floor is yeast, mainly because if it dries before we can clean it up, it becomes like concrete.
9. Whole hops are filthy creatures! We break up the hops for our whirlpool and dry hop additions to expose the oils more, and by the time I'm done, my hands aren't only green, they're black too!

I'm sure there are more, but right now those are the ones that come to mind. As I gain experience and confidence, the job becomes more and more enjoyable. The pressure is still there to perform every freakin' day, but the stress is waaaaaaaaay down. Even after 20+ years of being a lazy-ass English teacher, doing physical labor six days a week is somehow refreshing and wonderful. (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/cool.gif)
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sdeweese
post May 8 2009, 08:04 PM
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QUOTE(just-cj @ May 8 2009, 07:53 PM) *
Well, it's been about five weeks since I turned pro. The first week was just overwhelming -- talk about too much information. From the second week, I was put on "hyper-training," because the boss was going to the Craft Brewers Conference in Boston and I had to be ready to brew by the 20th. Super stress every day. But in the end, I managed to brew three batches during the week he was gone, two on our 250-liter system and one on the 1000-liter system. Since then, I've been doing everything at an accelerated training pace, and the past three days I brewed up three batches, plus assisted in transferring and packaging another couple of batches -- not to mention the cleaning. I'm brewing again tomorrow (Sunday) and probably three or four more times during the week. My level right now? Stress is down to 20%, confidence is up to 80%, competence up to 90%, and the beers I've made have all been fantastic (if I don't say so myself (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/blush.gif) ). I still haven't started designing our recipes, but that will be coming over the coming few months.

Things that surprise/intrigue me so far:

1. We pitch as much yeast as most homebrewers brew in a batch -- 20 liters for a big batch (big batch = 1000 liters, around 8 barrels).
-- 1a. We throw away more yeast from one batch than any of you brew in a month. Today I threw out around 10 liters on top of the 20 or so that I threw away two days ago. Tomorrow, another 10 liters or so will go down the drain, and there was probably some more taken out on about day four. For a single batch, we throw away between 50-80 liters, generally, and for a double batch we can brew two or three beers and still have 50 liters left over.
-- 1b. Even though it's the same yeast, it tastes completely different (yes, we taste the yeast every time we harvest or pull for throwing away) depending on the beer it comes from.
2. Glycol is the bomb!
3. Dry hopping for only 4-5 days, much less than most homebrewers do, I think.
4. I actually like bottling -- and kegging.
5. Hop diving at the end of the boil is hot, sweaty and sticky, and it's my favorite "dirty job." To hop dive, we have to climb into the kettle and pull out all the whole hops (no pellets for us) by hand.
6. There's a lot more -- and I do mean A LOT MORE -- to brewing than manning the brewhouse. And it's all part of being a brewer. Everyone always says to be prepared for a lot of cleaning, but cleaning (including sanitizing) is really only part of what goes on "behind the brewhouse."
7. Adding hops is even more fun than when I was brewing at home. When I made our Black IPA a few days ago, I added "only" around 200 grams for three additions and only 150 grams for the knockout addition, and I felt somehow cheated that I couldn't add more.
8. Being able to dump water/cleaner/sanitizer on the floor is just too convenient. The only thing we take pains not to spill on the floor is yeast, mainly because if it dries before we can clean it up, it becomes like concrete.
9. Whole hops are filthy creatures! We break up the hops for our whirlpool and dry hop additions to expose the oils more, and by the time I'm done, my hands aren't only green, they're black too!

I'm sure there are more, but right now those are the ones that come to mind. As I gain experience and confidence, the job becomes more and more enjoyable. The pressure is still there to perform every freakin' day, but the stress is waaaaaaaaay down. Even after 20+ years of being a lazy-ass English teacher, doing physical labor six days a week is somehow refreshing and wonderful. (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/cool.gif)

Thank you, cj for taking the time to write this... and Wow! You may be a brewer now but your ability to convey this new experience is exceptionally descriptive. I predict that, in the distant future, you will have a third satisfying calling that melds your two primary expertise.
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chuck_d
post May 8 2009, 08:34 PM
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QUOTE(just-cj @ May 8 2009, 08:53 PM) *
-- 1a. We throw away more yeast from one batch than any of you brew in a month. Today I threw out around 10 liters on top of the 20 or so that I threw away two days ago. Tomorrow, another 10 liters or so will go down the drain, and there was probably some more taken out on about day four. For a single batch, we throw away between 50-80 liters, generally, and for a double batch we can brew two or three beers and still have 50 liters left over.


Nothing like putting some BOD on the waste treatment plant (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/devil.gif)

Thanks for the long report CJ, it's great to hear back from those that have successfully made the transition to professional brewing.
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just-cj
post May 8 2009, 08:39 PM
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QUOTE(sdeweese @ May 9 2009, 10:04 AM) *
Thank you, cj for taking the time to write this... and Wow! You may be a brewer now but your ability to convey this new experience is exceptionally descriptive. I predict that, in the distant future, you will have a third satisfying calling that melds your two primary expertise.

Starting in June or July, I'll be training the young Japanese guy we have working for us. He's been learning everything except manning the brewhouse, and that'll be my job -- teaching and brewing. Life can't get much better!

QUOTE(chuck_d @ May 9 2009, 10:34 AM) *
Nothing like putting some BOD on the waste treatment plant (IMG:style_emoticons/brewboard/devil.gif)

Actually, wise guy, all of our spent grains, hops and yeast go to another brewery in the area that composts it to use in their fields. I'm not really sure what they grow, but our organic waste is helping them out -- and helping us out by being a lot cheaper than having someone come and haul it away for us.
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chuck_d
post May 8 2009, 08:55 PM
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QUOTE(just-cj @ May 8 2009, 09:39 PM) *
Actually, wise guy, all of our spent grains, hops and yeast go to another brewery in the area that composts it to use in their fields. I'm not really sure what they grow, but our organic waste is helping them out -- and helping us out by being a lot cheaper than having someone come and haul it away for us.


Heh, nice, I know a lot of breweries are giving their organic waste to farms, I just read "down the drain" and thought you were dumping some into the yeast waste water system, but I get now that you were using a figure of speech.
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RunDownHouse
post May 8 2009, 10:24 PM
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I'm curious about what exactly you enjoy about packaging, especially bottling.
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Oldfart
post May 8 2009, 10:56 PM
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Cj, many thanks for the in-depth dump, please keep them coming!

Is there anything you've learned since going pro that we don't know about making good beer? Any secrets that you can whisper to us? Or do you do it just like us, only on a larger scale?

Have you considered recycling your CO2, putting a green lable on your bottles? If so, we need to talk...

Thanks again,

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just-cj
post May 8 2009, 10:57 PM
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Packaging is satisfying because you can immediately see the result of what you're doing -- the end of the brew that you started several weeks before. Once it's bottled, it goes through secondary fermentation/carbonation for 7-10 days, and then it's ready to sell. Same with the kegs -- I can see them stacking up as I fill, one by one by one -- I can see what we've accomplished.

I'm not saying that it's easy -- it's hard work, back-breaking work, but it's the end of my involvement with the beer (other than drinking, of course), and that always feels good to get another batch ready to be enjoyed.

Oldfart -- no secrets, really, just confirmation of what I've been doing for the past ten years at home. Quality ingredients, healthy yeast, good aeration, temperature control, secondary fermentation/carbonation -- it's all good stuff!

This post has been edited by just-cj: May 8 2009, 10:59 PM
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