I was unenthusiastic about batch number 174, Elevenses Ale. The rye flavor didn't really come through--I need to use more next time. The earthiness of the Northern Brewer hops was overpowering and I couldn't get a sense of the beer. So, I gave it a little more time. We drew off and dove into a couple of pints each tonight. The hop flavors are still strong and distinctive, but they've softened enough to let the malt speak. There's a light sweetness and easy dry finish there and it's coming to the fore as the beer ages. I believe strongly that what homebrew needs, other than a fanatical devotion to cleanliness, is TIME. Wait. Be patient. Relax. The longer the beer spends in a dark, cool place, the better. Beer ages beautifully in the bottle and the keg. If your home-cooked batch is a little rough around the ages, just give it another week and it will improve markedly. I did that with Elevenses Ale and it has matured into a lovely beer.
a.d. V Id. Feb.
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