we all put the yeast in

Ladies and Gentlemen, please behold the glory that is my root beer. Cover the eyes of your children, shoo away the pets, and make sure Grandfather has taken his heart pills. Do NOT look directly at the root beer, for you shall surely be smoten if you do so.

Today is the first day back from fall break. Extremely bored last week, myself and a friend went to the grocery store to pick up stuff for dinner. Lo and behold, what did I find but root beer extract! What’s this it says on the side? Mix one bottle of extract with 4 and 3/4 gallons of water, 9 cups of sugar, and some yeast. Bottle immediately, and brew for 7 to 10 days at a temperature between 75 and 80 degrees.

I made half a batch. 24 bottles. One 6pack of Honey Brown, one of Saranac, and two of Natty Lite down the gullet, wash the bottles, and keep the caps.

As the brewing progressed, the look of the root beer bottles became critical. I’ve never seen glass swell before, but I’m pretty sure the bottles were swelling. Over the course of a week, three bottles exploded. And I don’t mean no stupid little pfloop hey look the cap popped off! No no, I’m talking about actual full bottle-smashin shard-flinging explosions.

Half of the case was sampled on Saturday. Not bad, but I think I put in a bit too much yeast. It tasted great, slightly buzzy, very carbonated, but smelt of rising bread dough. As long as you didn’t sniff right after you finished sipping, it was okay. Even if you did, it wasn’t disgusting or anything. Just imagine a mouthful of fresh bread and birch beer. Yeah, kind of off-putting.

Anyway, the rest of the bottles are still brewing, and will be drank at a root beer party tomorrow.

If I could, I’d mail some to ya. But I caint. Maybe if this really takes off, I’ll start a bottling plant and become a conglomerate or something. Really though, at that point, I probably wouldn’t give a rat’s ass about you little people. I’d be too busy with my geishas and concubines and big steaming smattering piles of money.


<Keanu Reeves> whoa! </Keanu Reeves>

What kind of extract did you use? I have not been happy with the ones I’ve tried. They all seems less than “full-bodied” than I’d like.

Before I switched to kegs for soda, I put the six-packs into an old cooler and closed the lid. It will contain the glass and the mess.

If I understand the above correctly, you used regular recyled (cleaned) beer bottles for bottling your rootbeer? That (and either too much sugar or too much yeast) accounts for the breaking–I know, you’re probably thinking “well duh,” but humor me…

Actually when PLD and I started homebrewing beer, the store owner who was quite knowledgeable and advised us on the best equipment, etc., warned us about using regular beer (off the shelf, recycled) bottles. Standard bottles can’t always handle homemade brews (alcoholic or not) that carbonate in the bottles–they’re thin glass. Any beer & wine store that sells home brewing kits probably carries the correct re-useable bottles for home bottling. Even those, which are noticably thicker glass, can explode rather unexpected. (Thankfully, we had them carbonating in the boxes the bottles originally come in so while they started popping off, they didn’t send shards of glass everywhere–just deeply into the cardboard.

Incidentally, they also sell a sterilizer powder with the beer supplies/kits that will help improve your results (over just washing the bottles)…every little impurities effects the outcome and flavor (or so I was warned).

There, now how’s that for useless knowledge! :slight_smile: