Friday, December 7, 2012

Delayed - Again

So, today really was the day that I hoped that a nameless supervisor in Washington D.C. would take pity on us and review our file to sign off on it.  Unfortunately, that didn't happen.  But Monday is another day, right?  Yes, for sure, there is a pony in that room somewhere.  (If you don't know that saying, ask in the comments.)

AND, today was the day that we were supposed to fire up the brewhouse for the first time in it's new location, but alas, that didn't happen either.

There was no apparent problem with permits or equipment.  No, this time it was for the simplest of reasons.  When we brew, we end up with several hundred pounds of "spent" grain.  In other words, we have run it through the grist mill, mixed it with hot water and extracted as much sugar from the grain as we can, but it leaves behind the bulk of each kernel that goes into the mash tun.  That grain has significant food value remaining.  In the past we have used a small amount of it for making spent grain pretzels or bread in restaurants, but we have a LOT more grain than can be used in that fashion without opening a commercial bakery specializing in spent grain products.  So, instead, we have arranged for a pig farmer to collect the spent grain which he uses to supplement the pig feed.  Win/win/win - We dispose of the grain with low cost and in an environmentally sound fashion; the pig farmer gets free, high-quality grain to supplement his feed; and the pigs get something tasty that they like.

Only problem today, the pig farmer has the barrels we use for this process and we couldn't get them back in time to brew today.  We use multiple 55-gallon plastic drums that the tops have been cut off, so they stand up to the weight and are reasonably moveable, but there isn't an easy substitute.  So stymied on that adventure today.

Oh well, Monday is another chance for our license, we will get the barrels back next week and River City Brewing will continue it's long and tortured process of coming to life.  Stay tuned.

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