Brew Fridge – Part I: The Rambling
In the beginning Ninkasi created the malted grains and the yeast. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of Ninkasi was hovering over the soaked bappir. And Ninkasi said, “Let there be alcohol,” and there was alcohol. Ninkasi saw that the alcohol was good, and she separated the alcohol from the darkness. Ninkasi called the alcohol “beer,” and the darkness she called “sobriety.” And there was the party, and there was the hangover—the first day.
Had Starsan existed in 1800 BC, one could argue that mankind would find itself in a much different world than today; perhaps more than one world. I’m not claiming that I could be sipping on a refreshing God of Wort Red Ale on Mars Colony One right now, but perhaps this timeline would present some cheap orbital fares at the least. For now, man is destined to imagine a four year period under the authority of an angry pumpkin that fell into the clippings of a Shih Tzu’s hairy asshole. Coming to Netflix this fall: House of Trump Cards.
All this bitterness emanates from somewhere I suppose. It may have to do with the saga of moving a fridge up the flight of stairs to my apartment over the weekend. It could also just be my shitty apartment. If it insulated even a bit, I could continue to ferment beer in the closet, but I alas, my hot box in the sky is a forsaken habitat; scorched or frozen at the slightest provocation. It’s also $1675 for a two-bedroom in the Bay Area, so I’ll consider myself a prisoner of the local economy.
Many homebrewers have made the jump to kegging. Many have also procured or constructed keezers, fermentation chambers, or a combination of both. I’m aiming to tackle all of it in one fell swoop. I have no means to control fermentation temperatures in my apartment, and I’m quickly tiring of the bottling process. I also have no garage to speak of, so the most reasonable option is to build a system using a side-by-side refrigerator. This has been done with success by a few people already, but my requirements are slightly different than the builds I’ve reviewed. For one, my primary fermentation vessel is a 14 gallon SS Brewtech Chronical. I also want the option to ferment in at least one additional vessel (a bucket or carboy), and the spacing gets pretty tight. Secondly, I will implement two Inkbird ITC-308 controllers for chamber temperatures. These are rated for 1000W so I have no doubt they can manage most refrigerators, but yet, I still haven’t seen these integrated into a build. This should be easier than integrating an ITC-1000 or Love TSS2, but I’m at least feeling a little different.
My journey begins in Part II.