Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Herald of Change Brewery

Last Sunday I launched my new brewspace - The Herald of Change Brewery, by inviting members of the Hanoi Handcrafted - Brewers Guild to come along and participate in the making of some beer. One of the attendees, Dean Anthony is the founder of Hobby Brewer Vietnam, another, Peter Lentes is the first hobby brewer in Hanoi. The third attendee was Alex Graham, who is one of the early adopters of my All Grain 10L Pilot Brewery Kit. As luck would have it, a few days before the opening, VTV4 contacted me and asked if they could do a segment for their "Expat Lives" program. [See the video below...]

The name of the brewery took quite some time to work out. I was looking for a, 'Ye olde worlde' type pub name like "The Farmers Arms," or "The Pig and Whistle," or "The Bearded Clam," but nothing sat quite just right. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks, many people use their own name, e.g. Peter's Extra; to label their beer or brewspace, so why not mine? It just didn't have quite the ring I was looking for, but the meaning of my name did - Herald of Change.

Taking the initials led to an additional, unexpected pun, THC - another intoxicating substance; I was sold; the name had been found, and it was good!

My brewspace is a 4 by 5 meter room. It is set up with:
- a malthouse for grain storage and milling
- a brewhouse for the mashing and boiling of wort
- a wetshop for clean up and washing of equipment
- a cellar for the fermentation and storage of packaged beer
- a warehouse for the storage of empty bottles, kegs and miscellany
- a laboratory for yeast cultivation, storage, and starter preparation
- an office for recording brewday data, and inventory management, and
- a couch for sitting on and gazing at the whole system - quite meditative really.

There's an insulated keg that serves as a nice beer table and magazine rack and the rest of the middle room space is kept open and clear of clutter. All in all its a very orderly and easy to use space.

The brewhouse s , at present, for the purpose of moving forward and making beer, a three tier, single step infusion mash system built around a insulated cooler with braided hose as a manifold. Trouble is I keep trying to multi step mash in it - I've even calculated the temp absorption by the cooler and the individual water additions for a 5 step mash program and not blow out the 27L capacity of the cooler.

The current plans are to replace the existing bamboo tableware with stainless steel or painted iron, purpose built benches; and to replace the cooler with a 2nd burner and 40cm stainless steel pot; and, the transfer pipes will be replaced with silicon tubing. But, the need is to get going and brew, replacements can be integrated along the way but can't be allowed to stop the brewing process, hence the Opening last Sunday.

Hope you enjoy the video:

Until the next time,

It's Your shout, Mate!

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