Last year, this blog was probably the biggest change in my homebrewing. Posting about every batch and keeping the blog going every day meant I had to put a lot more effort into not only keeping track of what I was doing, but also planning what I was going to do in upcoming batches.
That helped my brewing a lot, but the daily posts also ate up a lot of the time I had to commit to the hobby. The new format I’m going to be adopting for future brews will be broken up differently to hold me even more accountable, take less time and hopefully, make the blog easier to follow.
In the past, I’ve done huge brew day posts covering everything leading up to and including the day that the beer is brewed. Then I did periodic batch updates, covering any beers that were in process. Some beers were covered in multiple batch update posts, some were never mentioned. Then, finally I did tasting notes.
My plan going forward is to write a post prior to brew day, the bulk of which will be the recipe. I will explain how I got to this recipe, cover any unique processes I’m going to use and if I want to, I can write more about the style, history or my plan for the beer.
Then, I’ll post again covering everything that happens from brew day to packaging. Any changes to the plan that became necessary (or happened anyway) and any notes about how the brew day or fermentation went. Some overly complex beers, PROOF for example, may require a couple of these posts, but in general it will be one update per batch. I will also try to include the label artwork in these posts.
Again, I’ll follow up with tasting notes. I’m going to expand my tasting notes a little bit, though. Not the way I write them, just how often. I’m not going back to daily posts, but I do plan to start weekly tasting notes. I’m way behind on tasting notes right now, but after I get caught up, I will be able to start doing multiple rounds of tasting notes for age-able beers, or just things that I think are worth taking another look at.
My tasting notes are very tied to the time that they are done, they are not meant to be definitive. I want to do more comparative tasting notes, either pairing related homebrews or homebrew to commercial beer that inspired it or even food pairings. I may even start doing tasting notes on commercial beers on their own. Not just random beers, though, only if they are inspiring future homebrews or tied to homebrewing in some way.
Beyond these posts about my brewing process and the results of that process, I hope to expand the blog out of the homebrewery. I want to try to attend and cover more beer related events. Whether that means beerfests, homebrew club meetings, classes or just tap takeovers at local bars, I will include more commercial beer related topics but I will always tie them back in to homebrewing.
Beyond the new three post set up for all brews, I just want to get more involved in local events and reflect that here. I feel like I’ve gotten very insular with my homebrewing in the last couple years and I think that has gotten me pretty far with the quality of my beer, but I think I’m ready to start sharing and I know that I’m ready to dive back in to brewfests and the more social aspects of the hobby in general. It seems only appropriate to reflect that here.
Joining the Lancaster Brewers homebrew club has been a huge influence on this direction, but other smaller influences are also related. The Lancaster Community Supported Beer program has gotten me to make more trips to local breweries, and I plan to write more about that soon. Untappd, especially in conjunction with the other two things I’ve already mentioned, has helped me get more social and given something to talk about.
Stay tuned to see how well I keep to this plan. Last year, I shared my ideas with the Internet via this blog. This year I want to share them with my local peers and report on my experiences here. Thank you to anyone who has given this any attention.