Beer one

Beer one

I had my first bottle tasting of Beer one (Black Rock lager with 1kg sugar) last night.

I have to remember that technically, according to kit instructions, the beer is not ready yet – it has been in the bottle carbonating for 5 days and now has another 7 days to condition. General advice is then to refrigerate it for 24-48 hours before drinking. So yesterday’s taste was skipping that 7 days and the 24-48 hours chilling – I quick chilled it in the freezer.

Carbonation was good – I’d been worried we’d put too little sugar in – but first impressions of taste were, well, rather underwhelming! There’s a taste as the beer hits the tongue, but then emptiness drinking the beer down, and an aftertaste of sweet and bitter at the finish.

Why so empty in the middle? And that sweetness in the aftertaste just doesn’t fit with the bitterness.

Is this just “Lager with sugar” kit taste? Or can I expect that this will improve to be yummy? Save for the carbonation, it tastes pretty similar to when I bottled it 5 days ago.

Perhaps one of the reasons for being underwhelmed is the strong beer smell. It’s not a bad smell – it’s just a really powerful beer smell – and it leads you to anticipate a strong flavour that isn’t there.

I hope that the next 7 days will improve the flavour of this beer a lot. But can it?

Still, I have to remember that 11 days ago this beer didn’t even exist, and after 5 days fermenting, it was on the 6th day that the flavour really changed, when it hit 1006. So maybe 7 more days will be enough?

Part of the reason for sampling last night – and at various stages before bottling – was to educate me, so that I can have a better understanding of how the taste changes. Let’s hope that in a week’s time I can look back and take the lesson that a week in the bottle makes a lot of difference!

At least I have one thing to congratulate myself on: I’ve made it this far and the beer didn’t get infected! Yeah!