Yesterday marked another successful brew day. All told, I got three batches done: one Kolsch (with/for my friend Dominick), and two that fall well into the "Kitchen Sink" category. They are looking more like brown ales than anything else.
An interesting thing to note about my "Kitchen Sink" beers, those I make out of the dribs and drabs of whatever ingredients I have on hand: they are, more often than not, the best things I've made. The Kolsch, for instance, is derived from a Kitchen Sink Kolsch I made two years back. My Impropmtu Ale was quite tasty, as is a Golden Ale (very Helles-like) that I have on tap right now--both "Kitchen Sink" style. So, while you never really know what you're getting, I have high hopes for these.
What was perhaps the most fun was doing the same beer back-to-back, with the same techniques, and watching the numbers fall out identically. The pre-boil gravity was spot-on; post-boil, same. Efficiency was identical. Not to brag, but while I knew I had my process down, I didn't think I was *that* good at this!
I did change a couple of things up between the batches. The grain bill was identical, but I added an ounce of Maltoferm Black to the second one. This changed it from a deep reddish brown to something approaching a porter. I also changed up the yeast--the first batch was dosed with California Ale yeast, and the second with a British Ale yeast. Regardless, they were both fermenting happily this morning, and (as mentioned) I have high hopes for them. Stay tuned for updates...