Spring seems like it's here, so I thought I'd brew a light, tart, refreshing beer, a Ginger Saison. Made with mostly pilsen malts, light dry extract, and a little munich malt. I'm doing a partial mash this time, using 4 pounds of grain and 3 pounds of extract. I added 2 oz. of liberty hops in a the start of the boil and 3 oz. of candied ginger near the end. I'm also using White Labs Saison liquid yeast.
The majority of the brewing I've done over the years has been partial mash. It's a little cheaper than all extract, and gives me a little more control both in flavor and in color. It's super easy to do, and you don't need a ton of extra equipment. I use a 2 gallon beverage cooler as a mash tun and a stainless steal vegetable steamer as a filter. It's an incredibly simple, yet highly effective way of doing this.
Shown below are pictures of the cooler and vegetable steamer, the candied ginger and Saison yeast, and a shot of my immersion chiller in action, cooling the wort after the boil. I'd like to note, I simply don't dump the unused water down the drain. It can be used to water the garden, wash the car, or my most common use, I dump it into the washing machine when doing a load of laundry. The grains don't have to go to waste either. You can cook with them, making bread, pizza dough, granola, or dog treats, I compost small amounts like today, or on all grain brew days, I'll donate the grains to someone with livestock. It's great for chickens, peacocks, goats, and cattle.
One more week until I keg my Dark Cherry Stout, and 2 more weeks for today's Ginger Saison. Until than...Prost!