Monday, April 19, 2010

Going Too Far?

I am beginning to worry that this home brewing lark is becoming a dangerous obsession.

Mrs Velkyal and I are looking at the possibility of buying a house, not actually in Charlottesville because prices are ridiculously inflated, but out in the surrounding area. We are looking for a house as opposed to a flat, not because we need a larger place live, and no we are not planning to populate this part of Virginia with hoards of malyals (malý is Czech for little) for quite some time yet, the reason is simple, we want a garden larger than a window box.

Some of the places in our price range come with an acre or two of land, which people for some reason think is best used by growing grass, but we would plough it all up, and turn the  land into a vegetable garden, perhaps a small orchard, and then there is the bit of land I am reserving for myself. Obviously I want to have a hop garden, which seem to be de rigeur for the serious home brewer, to grow Saaz hops if possible, maybe some Fuggles. But I want to go beyond the hop garden and have a small patch of garden for growing my own barley, preferably the Hana strain from Moravia, which I would malt and use in my brewing.

Clearly, I am not planning on having great fields of barley, just enough for a batch or two in the autumn, when coupled with my home grown Saaz hops, I can see myself making a pilsner style lager. As I say, I am getting worried at the level of obsession I seem to be developing, and we haven't even yet discussed the bar I will build in the basement of any house we buy.....


  1. It's a harmless obsession. At least you do not have a compulsion to murder hookers and you need a big garden to bury them in. It could be worse, matey.

  2. I will also worry if we do a Tom and Barbara and starting making peapod wine!

  3. "growing my own barley, preferably a fairly under-modified strain"

    I was under the impression that the degree of modification was determined by the malting procedure.

    Hop garden, homebrew kegerator, fermentation fridge... yeah its too easy for me to get obsessive about brewing. Theres always one more piece of equipment, or one more recipe/procedure to learn/try. But I agree, is mostly harmless, otherwise I could just be watching TV.

  4. You are right, hence the change in the post. Oops.

    I am already planning the bar, and the heart of it will be a couple of beer engines for cask ale.

  5. Just drink enough of the product until you don't worry anymore. Problem solved!

  6. Growing and malting your own barley? Of course that's not obsessive. Who could thunk it to be?

  7. Brewing is a terribly dangerous obsession - well done and keep it up.



I worked out the other day that each day I was in Prague I walked about 7-8km, which is about 4.5-5 miles in old money. The longest walk tho...