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A Cautionary Tale of Pica Pica

Posted by on Nov 4, 2013 in 1000 words, Food, Slider | 9 comments

A Cautionary Tale of Pica Pica

We’ve dealt with Pica Pica (or Velvet Bean “Mucuna pruriens“) on many occasions in our 2 years here. It’s name in Spanish literally means “itch itch” and it’s aptly named. It’s a vine that grows over everything like kudzu, except it grows flowers and beans with hairy fibers that cause EXTREME itching. Normally these fibers float around in dry weather  and get on your laundry hanging out to dry or get in your unmade bed. This itching is pretty bad, but it only lasts about 10 minutes or so before...

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Sawdust, Sneezes, & Spackle

Posted by on Oct 1, 2013 in Island Life, Preparations, Slider, Work | 2 comments

Sawdust, Sneezes, & Spackle

I know you, our dedicated blog reader, are disappointed that we haven’t been posting regularly. Well, in all honesty, we’re probably going to continue that trend. We’ll try harder, though. I promise. Life hasn’t been too exciting lately. We’ve been working on the brewpub pretty much all day, every day. Recent projects include deconstructing, cutting, and sanding about 3 million pallets; sneezing and wheezing as sawdust takes over our space; attempting to clean bathrooms with no running water; hauling buckets of...

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Step #7,592 to Opening a Brewpub: Etch Glassware

Posted by on Jul 11, 2013 in Brewing, Slider | 5 comments

Step #7,592 to Opening a Brewpub: Etch Glassware

I thought I might give some insight into the workings of our obsessive attention to detail for our brewpub. We want our glasses etched with our logo, and since Naomi has been etching glass for years, we decided that we’d do it ourselves. We brought some acid etching cream with us when we moved, along with Naomi’s one true love, a Cricut die cutting machine that can cut custom shapes out of various materials. I put together a simplified version of our logo and cut it out using vinyl shelf paper that would just barely cut through the...

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The Great Flood

Posted by on May 27, 2013 in Brewing, Slider | Comments Off on The Great Flood

The Great Flood

You know how in movies or cartoons, the water will get left on in a room until the entire room fills up with water? The water gushes out from under the closed door and when it’s opened, a biblical deluge is let loose. That’s what Naomi arrived to find at the brewery on day three. Not a good sight! A local ‘Rican who hangs out on the plaza had done plumbing work in the building before and knew which water meter was ours. He turned it off when he saw the waterfall, but the entire building still had 2-4 inches of water...

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Brewery Renovation Day One

Posted by on May 23, 2013 in Brewing, Island Life, Slider, Work | 3 comments

Brewery Renovation Day One

We don’t have power yet, but we do have a key! Let the demolition begin. We removed the drop ceiling first, which added another two feet to the ceiling height. That helped open up the space a bit. Many years ago, when this was a furniture store, the renters built a mezzanine over the back quarter of the main space. You can’t even stand up in this new room and it drops the lower ceiling to barely six feet. And then, they, and every tenant after, proceeded to fill it up with junk. I can’t imagine why any one would build this...

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RBC First Beer Tasting

Posted by on Mar 7, 2013 in Brewing, Island Life, Slider, Work | 3 comments

RBC First Beer Tasting

During the Rincón Plaza Art Walk this past Thursday, Rincón Beer Company made its debut! Although last-minute, the event went well. Sage had two beers ready for sampling: Sandy Blond Ale and Overhead IPA. We passed out free samples of each, along with comment cards for people to rate the flavor, mouthfeel, and general taste of the beer. We were excited to get some feedback on our product, albeit a bit nervous to put it out there in the world! Once we learned about the Art Walk, Sage came up with the idea to do a beer tasting there. We...

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DIY Project #1 Billion – Motorized Grain Mill

Posted by on Mar 3, 2013 in Brewing, Island Life, Slider | 2 comments

DIY Project #1 Billion – Motorized Grain Mill

Crushing my grain has been a bit of a chore with my current set up. I installed a low-cost corona mill in a bucket and I’ve been using my drill to spin it. For a 10-gallon batch, though, I run through two fully charged batteries. My hammer drill doesn’t really have the torque to power it and started smoking the last time I tried it. I needed to build a proper milling station for weighing and crushing grain. I decided to re-purpose my original brewing stand and find a way to mount my mill to be powered by a proper motor, all while...

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DIY Glycol Chiller

Posted by on Feb 17, 2013 in Brewing, Slider | 6 comments

DIY Glycol Chiller

The biggest problem with brewing in the tropics is temperature control. The hot wort needs to be cooled as quickly as possible to temperatures that the yeast can tolerate, below 80° F. While the wort is hot, bacteria and wild yeast are inhibited. Once the wort cools below 140°, though, it’s open season on the sugars present. The tap water here is nearly 80°,  which makes the cooling process difficult. I’ve been using ice water, but once I’m brewing on a regular schedule it will be too difficult to make enough ice. What I...

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The Kegerator

Posted by on Jan 5, 2013 in Brewing, Slider, Work | 2 comments

The Kegerator

An important part of a brewery involves serving cold draft beers. This isn’t quite as easy as it sounds, however. The beer needs to kept around 45°F (this is very variable and very debatable) from the keg to the tap. If the kegs are too far away, glycol cooling lines might need be run, which greatly increases expense and creates complications. The easiest option is a kegerator, which is a beer keg refrigeration and serving device. Unfortunately, they are fairly expensive, with a single-tap kegerator running upwards of $400. They get...

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Brewery Upgrades Part 2

Posted by on Dec 8, 2012 in Brewing, Island Life, Slider, Work | 6 comments

Brewery Upgrades Part 2

Naomi and I have been discussing the brewery quite a bit lately and we’ve decided to go legit from the start. That means a commercial location, proper permits, and everything else that’s involved. To help this process along, I’ve enlisted the services of a professional business expediter to grease the proper wheels and handle all interactions with officials. Considering I have to pay rent on my commercial space while waiting on permits, I expect her fee will be well worth it. She also comes very highly recommended! One of my...

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