The future of the People’s Food Co-op

MLive reports that the People’s Food Co-op is in financial trouble, having lost money since 2012.  I joined PFC shortly after moving to Ann Arbor in 2009 and have been a supporter and shopper since.  Here are my thoughts.


Batch 76 (?) – All-Malt Lager

Batch 76: All-Malt Lager

My batch numbers might be mixed up, I may or may not sort that out.

Brewing: brewed March 15th.  OG 1.050.  Big boilover, long cleanup, but everything went fine on the beer side.

It was an 18 gallon batch, two vessels of pale lager and a third that got an addition to make it a Dark American Lager.  To make the dark share, I put a half-pound of crushed Carafa II (or III?  See recipe/BCS book) in 2 quarts of hot water, steeped it like a big tea bag til it cooled, then added to fermenter.

Fermentation: fermented in 50F ambient cellar space.  Pulled up to 64F for a diacetyl rest around 1.020 gravity, which was 5 days (CCYL lager yeast) and 7 days (single pack pitch of 34/70).  Let sit around in 64F for a couple more weeks.

Packaging: kegged the CCYL batch on April 11th, it finished around 1.000 FG for a bit over 6% ABV.


Recipe and batch notes:

Beer Homebrew Recipe Uncategorized

Batch 72: Frank’s Imperial Stout

Having my brother in town as a helper, we decided to brew a partigyle beer: 11 gallons of Imperial Stout and a 2nd-runnings Mild.  I used the same recipe I came up with for the first beer in the Knob Creek barrel.  That beer was outstanding after blending with 10 other people’s beer and barrel-aging; as I recall, mine was pretty good going into the barrel, too.

The recipe was a mix of a few credible recipes.

Brewing process Homebrew Recipe Uncategorized

Smoked Porter 2015

Over the 4th of July, I smoked about 3 lbs of Pils malt on an old potbelly stove.  It smoked with mesquite chips for a few hours in two batches, then was left to condition for ~7 weeks in an open paper grocery bag.

I first brewed a smoked porter with home-smoked malt in 2011.  I used alder chips then, in an homage to Alaskan Brewing Co.’s Smoked Porter.  It turned out well and the bottle I opened yesterday as I brewed the 2015 version has aged nicely.  The biggest flaw is that the smoke flavor is too phenolic.  I tried to avoid chlorinated water throughout the process but may not have succeeded.

I brewed this year’s smoked porter on the same potbelly stove I used to smoke the malt.  I’ve already written about the process of brewing on the potbelly stove, so I’ll stick to the recipe and batch notes here.


I have a blog

Why a blog?  I have two main purposes in mind:

  1. Opinions & ideas that are too long for my Twitter my Mastodon.  I’ll probably tweet toot links to these posts.
  2. Knowledge management: I often make things after reading on the web about how to make them.  Sometimes I think, “the internet was wrong” or “I could explain it better than that.”  Now I have a space to see whether I can make some small contributions to human knowledge that others might stumble upon and benefit from.  I benefit tremendously from internet knowledge so I ought to give back what I can.
    1. I will also benefit from my own notes on past projects.  In particular, I use Brewtoad to design homebrew recipes, but lack a good system for storing notes on the process & results.  I like how the Mad Fermentationist logs his brews on a WordPress blog.

Given that this may be a jumble of posts on DIY, beer, electoral politics, data analysis, etc. I expect that very few people will read through the blog continuously or follow it.  But if a few of the right readers find each post via other means, that’ll do.  And if no one reads it, at least I have a place to take notes.