Archive for the Uncategorized Category

Silver Wolf Brewing Co. – The Name

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on August 29, 2010 by sp1365

First off I wanted to thank everyone for the feedback and support after my post on Friday. I know I promised more info over the weekend so here you go. I apologize if this post rambles a bit, but I wanted to give everyone a deeper glimpse into what you can expect from me and the brewery. I also have a habit of getting a bit cerebral and lost in thought, so please bear with me.

What is in a name?

I would be lying if I didn’t say that the name partly derived from my love of wolves and dogs in general, but name goes further than that. The name is a throw back to etymology and naming of English Pubs after heraldic symbols. The wolf signifying perseverance or hard work and the color silver signifying respect, both of which are attributes that I strive for and put into every batch I brew. The other major factor behind the name is that I view beer and drinking to be much more enjoyable done in the company of friends, much like wolves in a pack.

Up Next:

-My next big project is the website, which I hope to have up in the next few weeks.

-Brewing various batches to refine our initial line of beers.

-Throughout the week I will be posting other glimpses into the breingw philosphy, brewer(me), the initial beers, and more.




Two Brothers Hop Juice

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on July 31, 2010 by sp1365


I would not classify myself as a hop head, but I do enjoy a good IPA every so often. Two Brothers, out of Warrenville, IL, brews some of my favorite hoppy beers in Cane and Ebel and Heavy Handed, so when I found Hop juice I knew I had to pick up a bottle.

Hop Juice was one of the 2009 Artisan releases and coming in at 9.9% ABV with 100.1 IBUs, this IIPA certianly lives up to its name. It pours a golden amber color with a fairly thick off white head. The aroma is a nice balance of citrus and pine hops, though the aroma was much softer than I expected.

After taking the first sip, what hits me is the balance of the beer. The hops and the sweetness of the malt are perfectly in sync giving this beer a pleasant flavor. The malt provides a caramel sweetness to the beer that proves an excellent counter point to the hop bitterness and let’s face it, the bitterness and flavor from the hops are what we are here for. Hop Juice does not disappoint in that regard. The citrus and pine aroma from earlier show up in full force on the palate providing a firm bitterness and tons of flavor.

Overall, 9/10.

St. Berndardus Abt. 12

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on April 22, 2010 by sp1365

Okay, so me an Belgian beers have not had the best of relationships. The first Belgian I had I hated (Chimay White), just couldn’t stand it. There was just something in the flavor and aroma that just turned me off and that gave me a serious distrust of the Belgian beers. Eventually, I gave Goose Island Matilda a try and it was okay, didn’t love it, but didn’t hate it either. Tonight though I have found the beer that has truly opened my eyes to the wonders that is Belgian beers, St. Berndardus Abt. 12.

St. Berndardus Abt. 12 is a Belgian Quad that is absolutely delicious. I picked up this beer at the recommendation of an employee of Belmont Party Supply in Dayton, OH (and on an aside the people there are great and the beer selection is amazing plus there is a homebrewshop next door). Given my previous disposition to Belgians I was nervous, but I went with it and I am glad I did. This beer is big (10.5% abv), I mean I did mention it was a Quad, but it drinks like a beer much smaller. The spicy yeast character typical of Belgians is present and blends nicely with a malty sweetness. The flavor is rich and fruity with a carbonic bite that keeps the beer from being cloying.

This beer has definitely opened me up to the world of Belgian beers and has made me rethink my opinion of the beers coming from Belgium. At this point I wish I had picked up more than one bottle.

Sun King Brewing

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on April 18, 2010 by sp1365

Yesterday I had the pleasure of to visit Sun King Brewing of Indianapolis, IN. I was hoping that I could have spent a little more time there to talk to people, but unfortunately representatives of Ball Corp. were there. All in all, my short visit there was definitely fun and if you are in Indy when their tasting room is open you should stop in to try their beers.

Sun King was started by Dave Colt and Clay Robinson about a year ago and already has been making waves in the craft brewing scene. They took home 2 medals in the World Beer Cup a few weeks back, a silver for their Sunlight Cream Ale and a bronze for their Dominator Doppelbock. Currently, Sun King produces 4 year round beers and rotating specialty/seasonal beers. Of those they are canning (yes canning) 2 of their beers with a third coming soon.The cans are only available in their tasting room, but from what I heard they should be starting distribution soon.

While their I got to try all, but their Osiris Pale Ale and that was more because I didn’t want to drink too much there. Here is the rest of their current line up with my thoughts:

  • Sunlight Cream Ale (cans, draft) – A very refreshing cream ale. I could see how this took Silver at the WBC. Great summer, outdoors beer. I ended up picking up a 4 pack of cans as I left.
  • Wee Mac Scottish Ale (draft, cans soon) – A Scottish brown. Very malty with just enough balance to not be overly sweet.
  • Bitter Druid ESB (draft) – My favorite offering from Sun King. British malts are very noticeable coming through with biscuit/bread flavors balanced with rich caramel sweetness. Bitterness counter balances the malt very well. I ended up with a growler of this as well.
  • Osiris Pale Ale (cans, draft) – Didn’t try it. Sorry.
  • Westy West Coast IPA (draft) – This is their seasonal/specialty right now. It is a California Common (Specific lager yeast fermented like an ale) beer hopped up like a IPA with German Noble hops. This beer was delicious. I had no idea going in how it was going to be, but I like it. The softness of the Noble hops really helped bring out both the bitterness needed for the IPA while leaving enough yeast character for the Cali Common.

Overall, a big thumbs up to the guys at Sun King. Great beers and friendly people. Check them out if you are in the Indy area.


Homebrew RoggenBock

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on April 14, 2010 by sp1365

So a while back I tried to do a triple decoction Roggenbock. The decoction did not go well and my brewday ended up being around little over 12 hours. Here is just a short list of issues that I had during that day:

  • First decoction went well, but the next 2 would not come up to temperature. Ended up decocting about 2-3 more times then necessary.
  • The second problem I ran into was testing for conversion. Every test turned up positive for starch. After an extra hour of mash time I just gave up and started the sparge.
  • During the sparge, I got my first stuck sparge even though I used a decent amount rice hulls.

Fortunately, the boil, fermentation, and bottling went by without problems. Now I am breaking one out every so often to try them. First thing you notice cracking it open is the aroma. This beer has a huge banana aroma that dominates with a hint of rye behind it and the color is a rich mahogany. The flavor, like the aroma, is yeast dominated with a hint of rye spice and maltly richness. Carbonation is very light (needs some more time in the bottle), and the mouth feel is very thick, yet finishes smooth and dry.

Once this carbonates up it should a pretty good beer, though I am not sure that I really want to go through the trouble of the decoction mash again. Recipe after the picture.



Type: All Grain

Date: 1/4/2010

Batch Size: 3.00 gal

Brewer: Ryan Murphy
Boil Size: 3.75 gal Asst Brewer:
Boil Time: 60 min Equipment: Stove Top
Taste Rating(out of 50): 35.0 Brewhouse Efficiency: 70.00
Taste Notes:


Amount Item Type % or IBU
0.25 lb Rice Hulls (0.0 SRM) Adjunct 2.50 %
4.00 lb Rye Malt (4.7 SRM) Grain 40.00 %
3.50 lb Munich Malt (9.0 SRM) Grain 35.00 %
1.00 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (1.0 SRM) Grain 10.00 %
1.00 lb Rye, Flaked (2.0 SRM) Grain 10.00 %
0.25 lb Chocolate Rye Malt (250.0 SRM) Grain 2.50 %
1.00 oz Tettnang [4.70 %] (45 min) Hops 22.5 IBU
1 Pkgs Hefeweizen Ale (White Labs #WLP300) [Starter 1200 ml] Yeast-Wheat

Beer Profile

Est Original Gravity: 1.076 SG

Measured Original Gravity: 1.069 SG
Est Final Gravity: 1.019 SG Measured Final Gravity: 1.011 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 7.50 % Actual Alcohol by Vol: 7.58 %
Bitterness: 22.5 IBU Calories: 309 cal/pint
Est Color: 18.3 SRM

BA Top 50 Breweries

Posted in Uncategorized with tags on April 14, 2010 by sp1365

Today the Brewer’s Association released their list of the top 50 breweries by volume in 2009. At the top is no real surprise with Boston Beer Co., makers of Sam Adams, came out on top with Sierra Nevada and New Belgium at numbers 2 and 3 respectively. Obviously when you look at the top 50 craft brewers in the America the list is going to be impressive, but there were some surprises, at least to me. The biggest being Kona Brewing Co. (HI)  at #13. I realized that they were the largest Hawaiian brewery, but I did not expect them to be that high up the list. Kona produced more beer last year than Stone (#15), Dogfish Head(#16), and Rogue (#24). 25 different states had breweries representing them, which I think is a testament to how wide spread craft beer has become.

BA Top 50

Beer Review: Left Hand Deep Cover Brown Ale

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on April 6, 2010 by sp1365

Sorry for the lack of updates over the weekend. I spent the time back home for Easter with my family and did not have much time to spend on the blog. I did get to have some good homebrewed porter from my dad as well as Half Acre Over Ale and New Belgium Mighty Arrow. Also got to brew an all Cascade APA with my dad on Saturday. Overall, a beer weekend.

So this will be my official first beer review. I am not and in no way a professional at this and I do not have any BJCP certification. I will just give my feelings as I progress though the pint. Tonight it is Left Hand Brewing’s Undercover Brown Ale.

From the Website:

  • Style: English Brown Ale
  • Color: Light Brown
  • Body: Light
  • ABV: 4.4%
  • IBU: 16
  • Malts: 2-Row, Crystal, Munich, Brown, Chocolate, Wheat
  • Hops: US Goldings

So now on to the beer:

Aroma: Very malt focused, almost no hop aroma. I can’t place an aroma here, but it is turning me off.

Visual: Pours light brown with a short lasting tan head.

Flavor: Very bready with a hint of toast. Very smooth with no noticeable hop flavor flavor or aroma. Finishes with moderately dry with a residual sweetness reminiscent of well toasted bread. There are a lot of flavors competing here.

Overall: Good brown ale, though I am definitely wishing there was something more to this. Looking at the list of malts I feel like they are almost trying to do too much and the flavors are not melding well. That is not to say this is a bad beer and will definitely enjoy the rest of the six pack I have. Just at the end of the pint I am left wanting something more out of this beer. Score 6/10.