Home Brew Bottles (What Kinds? Cleaning? Caps?)


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Last night Jim Eaton and Bill bottled the American Bock that Jim, Bill and Scott Finneseth began brewing on September 22nd.

It’s an odd concept that if one wants to bottle beer…you have to have bottles! Probably the only part of the brewing process these brewmeisters aren’t excited about is removing labels to recycle bottles.  But, many hands (and good conversation) make light work, as was the case last night.

Sam Adams bottles recycled for this batch of American Bock home brew. (Click photo to enlarge.)

Q.  What kinds of bottles do they use?

A. They used to try any bottles that weren’t of the twist-cap type. This included the longneck type of bottle as well as the shorter bottles, such as Anchor Steam.

The Anchor Steam bottles worked fine with their first batch of home brew.  However, when the Anchor Steam bottles were reused in a second batch, the tops of some of the bottles broke. Since this wasn’t the case with the longneck bottles, they now stick with the Sam Adams and other longneck non-twist-cap bottles and have had no further breakage problems.

(Once when they were really low on bottles, some were purchased from Beer Crazy in Urbandale.  Of course, that cost can add up quickly.)

(Click photo to enlarge.)Q. How do they clean the bottles?

Q.  How do they prepare the bottles for label removal?

A. They soak the bottles in a bucket for a day or so, or several hours if short on time.  The solution consists of water and the powdered form of Oxi Clean stain remover.  The labels peel off fairly easily.  A brush or sponge is used to remove any label residue.

(Click photo to enlarge.)

Q.  How do they get the caps to be tight on the bottles?

A. They use this contraption (at left) that they purchased at Beer Crazy in Urbandale.

* * * * *

S-o-m-e-t-i-m-e I plan to talk more with Mr. Spaulding and post more insight from him. Also, I want to add a few more posts to finish up about our Oregon trip.  And, of course, I want to pass along more information about Mother’s watercolors.

November 30th will be the fifth anniversary of  Mother’s passing away. The November 30th posting will be in her honor.  If you missed the open house and/or if you’d like to know more about the availability of prints of Mother’s watercolors of…an ear of corn, florals, grain elevators, a bunny, etc., click here.

Until next time, warm wishes and thanks giving for this…Thanksgiving.

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One Response to “Home Brew Bottles (What Kinds? Cleaning? Caps?)”

  1. Audrey Simonson Says:

    Thanks for the funny story. Several years ago I asked an aunt to write
    what she remembered about her mother. She laughed and said, “Well, I could tell you about the times she made beer in the bathtub!” As far as I know, my aunt didn’t write it down. I wonder what else she knew about Grandma that we grandchildren would find interesting?
    Time seems to go quickly…every once in awhile we mention something your mother did for our Genie Society. I wish I’d had a chance to get to know her 30 years ago.

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