Post Brew Post

On August 11, 2009, in Craft Beer, Family and Friends, Homebrewing, Music, Recipes, by Mark Ranes
Trailer Park IPA Tap Handle

Trailer Park IPA Tap Handle

I brewed Sunday.  I winged it.  It felt good.

Usually I spend several days getting ready for a brew session, but Sunday I played it by ear.  Saturday, I went and saw Paul Thorn at the Sonora Blue Festival.  He kicked ass!  We saw him in an hour-long workshop, where it’s just Paul and an acoustic guitar.  John went with me, and I successfully requested “Give Them Their Roses” in honor of John’s dad’s recent passing.  He was touched – and now he believes in Paul Thorn.  Paul Thorn is the best musical artist you’ve never heard of!  We enjoyed Don Oliver’s, of Dust Bowl Brewing’s, Hops of Wrath at the festival and supported the local boys:)

I came home Saturday night, filtered and measured my brewing water, and then got up early (not Steve early:) Sunday morning and weighed and milled my malt.  I used my standard single hop ale malt bill, and then just winged the hops.  You may know me as the Lazy Brewer, but those close to me would probably call me the Anal Retentive Brewer.  I like to know what is going on waaaaaaaay in advance, so this was a stretch for me.  And I enjoyed it!  I just used some of my favorite hops and matched the standard bittering levels of my single hop ales.  The ale is still currently unnamed.  This was my 88th batch.  Here’s the recipe:

Trailer Park IPA
14-B American IPA
Author: Mark Ranes
Date: 8/09/09

Size: 10.08 gal
Efficiency: 75.0%
Attenuation: 75.0%
Calories: 317.28 kcal per 16.0 fl oz

Original Gravity: 1.071 (1.056 – 1.075)
Terminal Gravity: 1.018 (1.010 – 1.018)
Color: 7.27 (6.0 – 15.0)
Alcohol: 7.03% (5.5% – 7.5%)
Bitterness: 63.3 (40.0 – 60.0)

20.0 lb Pale Malt(2-row)
4.0 lb Vienna Malt
10.0 oz Crystal Malt 10°L
6.0 oz Crystal Malt 40°L
1.0 lb Cara-Pils Dextrine Malt
0.5 oz Summit (17.0%) – added during boil, boiled 60.0 min
1.5 oz Northern Brewer (8.0%) – added during boil, boiled 45.0 min
1.0 oz Northern Brewer (8.0%) – added during boil, boiled 20.0 min
1.0 lb Corn Sugar
2 ea Whirlfloc – added during boil, boiled 10.0 min
1.0 tsp Yeast Nutrient – added during boil, boiled 10.0 min
2.0 oz Northern Brewer (8.0%) – added during boil, boiled 10.0 min
2.0 oz Cascade (5.5%) – added during boil, boiled 10.0 min
2.0 oz Northern Brewer (8.0%) – added during boil, boiled 0.0 min
2.0 oz Cascade (5.5%) – added during boil, boiled 0.0 min
2000 mL White Labs WLP002 English Ale Starter
3.0 oz Northern Brewer (8.0%) – added dry to primary fermenter
4.0 oz Cascade (5.5%) – added dry to primary fermenter

This ale is currently cranking away in my fermentation fridge.  When I open the fridge’s door, wonderful aromas escape:)

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Paul Thorn in Nacasio

On July 15, 2008, in Craft Beer, Family and Friends, Music, Travel, by Mark Ranes

The show in Nacasio was great.  Paul sang for a couple hours, and it was quite a different show than what we saw in Redwood City earlier this year.  The sets were different and included a mix with older tunes, as well as a solo set with Paul on an electric guitar.  This was a different crowd as well – most of the folks in Nacasio know Paul well and have seen him several times before.  For some reason, Nacasio really embraces Paul and he returns the love every time he shows up.

Paul Thorn singing in Nacasio

Paul Thorn singing in Nacasio

Before the warm-up band, The California Honeydrops, came on, Paul was called to the stage and we were told that it was his birthday.  The crowd sang Happy Birthday to him.  Then, much to his surprise, his wife came on stage and planted a big juicy kiss on him.  He was really surprised as he didn’t know she had flown in.

The temperature was in the mid-eighties and thankfully they had a pretty good brew on draft, Launitas IPA.  The BBQ was excellent, also.  I had tri-tip and DawBoy and Brenda shared a really nice BBQ salmon fillet.

After the show, we headed back to the Inverness cabin and spent the night.  It was a great day (but not to whup sombody’s ass)!

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Summer of Music

On July 12, 2008, in Music, Travel, by Mark Ranes

Paul Thorn at Rancho NicasioTomorrow we kick off our summer music tour.  We are heading up to Marin county to see Paul Thorn at Rancho Nicasio.  The show is a part of their BBQ on the Lawn series of events and thankfully I reserved tickets several months back, as the show is now sold out.  Here’s a great video clip you can enjoy from Paul’s web site (be patient and give the video clip time to load:).  Our friends, Eric and Becky, as well as the DawBoy, will join us for the show and an overnight at our friend’s cabin in Inverness.

Brenda and I will be going back to The Fillmore, in San Francisco, to see UB40 and Maxi Priest, on August 5th.  We really enjoyed the Fillmore earlier this fall when we saw Jimmy Buffett there.  There is no seating as The Fillmore is an old historic dance hall.  We saw UB40, with Keb’ Mo’, at the Ironstone Vineyards amphitheater last summer and they put on a really great show.  The surprise of the show was, Keb’ Mo’, though as I’d never heard his delta blues music before.  Great stuff!

Later in August, Stephen and I will be heading up to Raley Field in Sacramento to see Dave Matthews, on the 25th.  We plan on starting the evening off with a stop at Rubicon Brewing Company for dinner and ales.

Finally, Brad and John will join me at Shoreline Amphitheater for this year’s Jimmy Buffett concert on October 21.  Neither of these guys have seen Buffett live before, so they are in for a real treat!

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The Day After…

On March 26, 2008, in Brew Pubs, Craft Beer, Food, Homebrewing, Music, by Mark Ranes

Yesterday, we dropped off Brenda’s car in Livermore, grabbed a rental (a Pontiac G5 – ugg!) and headed off to Concord. After a quick stop at MoreBeer to get a variety of stuff – most notably four vials of White Labs Pacific Ale yeast (thankfully White Labs has decided to make this yeast available year-round. It used to be one of their seasonal Platinum strains), we headed off to the EJ Phair Alehouse. I was disappointed that the didn’t have Drake’s IPA on tap, but they did have Stone IPA, so I had that with their Spicy Steak Wrap. Good stuff:)

Spicy Steak Wrap

We killed some time shopping and then picked up the Jag. Traffic was light (spring break?) and we got to Redwood City with plenty of time for dinner. We had Mexican food for dinner, at a place called Margaritas, about a block from the Fox Theater. As we were finishing dinner, Paul Thorn and the band walked by the restaurant, presumably heading out for dinner before the show. I waited in line at the box office to pick up our tickets, while Brenda got in the main line to enter the Little Fox.

Little Fox Marquee

There was open seating, so we were hoping to get good seats. There were only a dozen or so people in line in front of us, so we weren’t too worried:) Unfortunately, there were having sound board problems, so we had to wait an additional half hour, out in the cold, before we were let into the theater. At 7:30 p.m., they let us in and we grabbed two seats, literally in front of the center-left side of the stage. We were so close I rested my feet on the stage for most of the show! I grabbed a couple of beers for us (I had a Sierra Nevada Pale). We kicked back waited for the show to start. It was a older crowd, and many of the folks had Paul Thorn stories to tell. Paul and the band came out exactly at 8:00 (I love people that are on time:) and he immediately apologized for wearing an ugly shirt.

Paul Thorn Performing

He said he’d gone out for a run that afternoon, come back to the Little Fox, and was bummed that there was no shower – so he’d taken what he called a “whore bath,” where you clean yourself with paper towels and water. Then he discovered that the venue didn’t have an iron to press his shirt for the show, so he had to wear a shirt that he could pull directly out of his suitcase, and didn’t need ironing. It was an interesting shirt…

He played almost all of the new CD, but the cuts sounded polished, like they’d been playing them for years. Paul sang an acoustic set in the middle of the show, to spell the band, and he played one of my favorite unrecorded tunes, “Might as Well Stay Married.” One of the lines goes “I couldn’t get laid when I was single, if you threw me in a women’s prison, so I might as well stay married.”

All in all, the band played for two solid hours, without a break, and it was the best show I’ve seen Paul put on. After the show, Paul met with crowd to sign CDs and take pictures. He is a gracious guy and took the time to chat individually with everyone who wanted to meet him.

Mark and Paul

Me and Paul. Aren’t you glad I Photoshopped out the bloody eye? 🙂

Brenda and Paul

Brenda and Paul

Autographed CD

My autographed CD

We were on the road by 10:15 p.m. and home a little after midnight:)

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