10Barrel_012014_DSCN0334We went to a local Boise brewery (10-Barrel Brewery) to sample some beer and to have lunch. While the lunch and service was good, the beer was a bit lacking.  With a couple of exceptions, of the 20 samples we had, I found that the beer had very little to no body, a strange aftertaste, and simply not to my liking.  I am sure that there are many people that enjoy this type of beer, just not me.  Then again, many of my beers, especially the stouts and porters, are thick and chewy.  Of course, I am not a beer expert – but I know what I like and what I do not like, and I did not really enjoy their beer. 

So…I once again set out to brew another beer – my 9th Idaho brew.  This time I went back to another favorite, the Amarillo IPA.  The source for this recipe, an extract, can be found here, at

I changed the recipe a bit from previous brews to take into consideration ingredients that I was lacking, and ingredients I wanted to get rid of.  So, a bit of 2-row replaced some Pilsner and I had 10 ounces of Cara-Pils that I wanted to use.  I also changed the hop schedule a bit from previous iterations of this brew.  With the exception of the 80 minute addition, all hops were whole leaf, and the garage smelled wonderfully of citrus during the brewing process.  This IPA is in the computer room completing its fermentation and is coming along nicely. 

Recipe: The Bearded Hen Amarillo IPA14Jan14_DSCN0337

Boil Size: 7 gallons
Batch Size: 5.5 Gallons
Boil time: 90 Minutes
SRM: 7.2
IBU’s: 74.4


86.1% – 11 lbs. Pilsner – German 
5.0% – 10.2 oz. Cara-Pils 
5% – 10.2 oz. Crystal – 40L
3.9% – 8.0 oz. Pale Malt – 2-Row


1.50 oz. – Amarillo  – 80 Minutes
1.25 oz. – Amarillo  – 15 Minutes 
1.25 oz. – Amarillo – 5 Minutes
1.0 oz.  – Amarillo  – 0 Minutes 
1.0 oz.  – Amarillo  – Dry Hop – 7 Days


1/2 tsp. – Irish Moss– 10 Minutes


1 pk. – Wyeast Labs #1056 – American Ale – No starter this time

One item that made brewing this beer enjoyable, was the new addition to the garage – we had a sink put in, and it makes brewing and other things way more enjoyable than using a hose in the driveway.  The plumbing company (C R Higer in Caldwell) did great work with two very pleasant plumbers, and came in a whopping .60 cents over their estimate.  I will definitely use them again.


Photo of the ?

The image below is of our property, looking toward the house from the shed.  Taken 17 January 2014. Click to expand picture.


Six Month–An Update

01Jan14_Sunrise_300_1612It has been a while since I have posted, so, to make up for that issue, here is a picture of what we see almost every morning.

The image on the left if of sunrise, 01 January 2014 – a beautiful start to the New Year. 

In the mornings, with the exception of mid December when it was cold, we usually sit outside, drink coffee, and watch the sunrise.  Sometimes it is a bit foggy, but unless it is cold, we still sit outside in the mornings.  It is pleasant, quiet, and sometime entertaining with all of the birds and other animals.  In the summer and fall, when sunrise was to early for us, we sit outside and watch the sunset and later the stars, which is equally as enjoyable and beautiful as the sunrises.

We had flowers on the plants until the end of November when we started to get hard frosts at night.  The daytime temperatures were still quite warm until the second week of December.  In December and we had a few days with negative temperatures, but most days were in the 20’s or higher.  Temperatures are once again warming, and yesterday it was in the mid-50’s and sunny.  Looking forward to Spring, and have already received part of my seed order for the vegetable garden.

Since everyone likes sunrise pictures, here is one from 28 November 2013.  As with the previous image, these were taken from our back deck where we have coffee in the mornings.  Also, the Thanksgiving Turkey, our huge (less than one inch on 07 December 2013) snowstorm results.


While I have no pictures of them (yet), besides the regular farm animals, some of the animals that have visited us are a Silver/White/Gray Fox, a few Wolves, a very large cat critter (mountain loin?) that ran across the front of the property, several types of hawks and falcons, owls, and billions of Canadian Geese, which seem to over-winter here – Geese are everywhere. 

In closing – An image of us on our annual Christmas outing: