Two weeks ago Marji and I brewed batches 37 and 38 at Let’s Brew. Today I am bottling those beers, and just in time, too, because today is my last day in Portland.
A bottle sanitizer machine is used to sanitize the bottles, which are moved to a tree when the wash cycle is complete. The beer is transferred from the fermenter to a keg and priming sugar is added. Unlike Ghallagher’s and Bedford, where the beer is force carbonated, here the beer is bottle conditioned, so it won’t be drinkable right away.
Let’s Brew has a handy CO2 valve at the filling station. Before filling each bottle from the tap I shoot CO2 into the bottle, forcing out the air, which reduces the amount of oxygen that comes in contact with the beer and helps prevent oxidization as the beer ages.
The keg is connected to a tap and the bottles are filled from the tap. My workflow is to fill six bottles, cap them, then repeat. This process is hassle-free and I’m finished with both batches in about an hour and a half.
Tomorrow I’m flying to Los Angeles and, unfortunately, I cannot take any of these delicious new beers with me. The cases will be left with friends in Portland and Seattle for them to enjoy. It’s too bad I won’t get to taste any of what I bottled today, but returning to LA means brewing on my own equipment again, so I am looking forward to that!