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Home Brewing with Propane
With St Patrick’s Day approaching, it’s time to dig out those shamrock socks and get ready for the holiday. The St. Patrick’s Day tradition began as a feast day held in honor of St. Patrick on the anniversary of the day he died. As we all know, St Patrick’s Day has long been a special day with beer lovers across the world.
Kory Ball, Manager of the Blossman Gas location in Waynesville, is quite familiar with the home brewing phenomenon. His brother-in-law, Eric Ball, has been brewing his own beer for a few years now. Living in Weaverville, NC, Eric’s interest grew as the Asheville, NC, craft beer scene became more prominent.
Home Brewing Passion
“It was hard not to get interested in home brewing when the Asheville breweries started to take off. If I enjoy something, I have always been one to try and figure out how to do it myself,” says Eric. “I actually started by reading a book from one of the original founders of Green Man Brewery.” The majority of equipment Eric started his home brewing hobby with came from Bayou Classic, whose products can be found at Blossman Gas, which included a classic burner and a 10-gallon pot equipped with a thermometer.
The First Batch
When asked about the first batch of beer that he brewed, Eric says it came out close to what he expected. “It was your standard ale. The process took 4-5 months before any of it was consumed because of carbonation. It was drinkable; I thought it could have been worse for my first go at it.” When asked about his latest project, Eric discussed his attempt at a North Carolina staple. “Both Kory and I enjoy Catawba Brewing White Zombie beer. The White Zombie is a wheat ale and I have made four batches of it now. The last batch came out with a nice light taste, but I was hoping for more flavor. Next time I plan to use more coriander and orange peel to see how it comes out.”
Brewing with Propane
Eric uses a propane cylinder for his heat sourcing when brewing beer, but he is planning for a more permanent configuration in the future. “My house is powered by propane, and after I remodel my basement, I would like to connect a line to my propane tank directly to my brewing setup. We enjoy having home formatted through propane, and it’s been a great heating source for when I am experimenting with home brewing.”