Bottling- David’s Debut IPA- Part 2

by Kelli H. on June 29, 2011

It’s been almost a full month since we brewed our “Inauguration IPA.”  We let it sit in the primary fermenter for about 10 days, and then transferred it over to the secondary vessel where we dry-hopped the beer with 2-ounces of Cascade Hops and let it sit for another 10 days.  Dry Hopping is basically adding additional hops to the beer at non-boiling temperatures once it has completed fermentation. The reason I wanted to dry hop this beer was to give it a nice floral/citrus aroma that many people associate with common west-coast IPAs.  I love that scent, it’s probably one of my favorite scents in the world!  And I’m proud to say that as of bottling day it worked!  The beer has developed a very nice “hoppy” smell that many of you are familiar with when drinking IPAs.

The day before “bottling day”, Kelli and I spent several hours preparing over 50 bottles(!) by removing the labels, washing them, and sanitizing them.  I was so grateful to have her help because this was a bigger job than I had anticipated!  It made me decide that as soon as I can afford it I am going to invest in a 5 gallon keg and kegerator so I don’t ever have to deal with that again.  It seems like most home brewers end up going this route eventually anyway to avoid the hassle of dealing with bottles. 

Bottling only took us about an hour because I already had everything sanitized and ready to go by the time my brewing buddy Jeff showed up.  It’s actually pretty easy to bottle once you have all of the bottles dealt with.  You simply boil some priming sugar and water and then add it to the “bottling bucket”.  We then siphon the beer from the secondary vessel on top of the priming sugar into the bottling bucket and mix it up.  At that point we’re ready to put the beer into the bottles and cap them!  The remaining yeast in the beer will act on the priming sugar to create carbonation in the bottle within 1-3 weeks.  

I can’t wait to try it!  We’re having a Tasting Party/4th of July Party at Kelli’s Parents’ house on 4th of July weekend.  This will be the debut of the IPA for family and friends.  I hope everybody likes it.  Part 3 of the brewing series will be on the Tasting Party, and how the beer turned out.
In the spirit of the Made in Sonoma Blog, I leave you with the following questions: 
What is your favorite style of beer?  Do you have a favorite beer? 
Shout out in the comments below to let me know you care!

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

my little celebration June 29, 2011 at 1:20 pm

Great post! My husband would be your best friend if you lived in Kansas. He really loves beer. I, on the other hand, am not that big of a fan. But I almost hate that I’m not because there are so many beers out there that I’m missing out on!!

P.S. I chatted with Kelli last night and feel like I know you both a little bit better now! You seem like such a sweet couple. Hang in there with school/work. My husband is doing law school right now and it’s intense! But just know there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and it will all be worth it someday.


Made in Sonoma June 29, 2011 at 1:56 pm

I’m so excited for the tasting party I can hardly stand it!

Favorite styles are amber ales and starting to hop (hehe) on the IPA train.


David June 29, 2011 at 4:02 pm

@my little celebration

Yeah, any beer lover is a friend of mine! 🙂 There really are a lot of beers out there, and I truly believe there is a beer for everyone.

Thanks for the encouragement on the school situation. It’s sometimes hard to focus on the light when you’re so entrenched in the struggle of it all. But you’re right! It will all be worth it someday!


David June 29, 2011 at 4:05 pm

My favorite style is IPA all the WAY! Hoppy hop hops. 🙂
Current favorite beers: Lagunitas Maximus, and Bear Republic APEX IPA. (couldn’t just pick 1. lol.)


The Slow Roasted Italian June 29, 2011 at 7:18 pm

Looks like a lot of fun. My husband enjoys ales, I am a Bud Light girl. I can’t say I have ever tried IPA’s. I’m not a beer connoisseur, but this looks and sounds like its going to be amazing!!!


Shellie July 3, 2011 at 3:49 am

David, the beer was great! nothing like a home brew and home brick oven pizza with family…it was so much fun drinking and making pizzas!

btw: Uncle Mark always rates Kelli a solid 11 on her recipes…i have to give you 11 on the IPA!!!


Michelle Wells July 5, 2011 at 4:17 am

So glad you all had a good time! Home-made beer and pizza? YUM!!

Was having a hard time choosing my fave . . .
It definitely changes as I do LOVE craft beers but have been hooked on Widmer’s Hefeweizen for MONTHS!

Flavor-wise, I’d have to say wheat, hops, and / or fruity are all Fabulous! IPA’s for sure!

This weekend I found a new favorite to add to my list: Lagunitas Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’ Ale — It is YUMMY! Great when you don’t want anything too dark or heavy.
You know, when you just want a little sumpin!


David July 5, 2011 at 3:04 pm

@Michelle Wells

I LOVE Little Sumpin’ Ale by Lagunitas! It’s an excellent beer. 🙂


David July 5, 2011 at 3:21 pm

@The Slow Roasted Italian
A “Bud Light” girl?! We need to change that! 😉
I believe there is a good craft beer for everyone. IPA’s might not be the best place to start if you’re used to Bud, but try something like a Pilsner or Wheat Beer. (Hefenweisens are great places to start in the craft beer world!) So many options out there, and if you’re into good food, why not learn to start pairing it with good beer! 🙂


Michelle July 5, 2011 at 6:03 pm


Yes, it is an excellent beer!
This was the first time I had tried it and think it’s perfect for Summer!


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