Friday, February 27, 2015

The Volatility of Fermented Ginger

And then the ginger beer exploded.  It was sometime between Thanksgiving and Christmas, in the dead of night, we were asleep, I was dreaming, nightmaring about some calamity befalling my youngest child, a mother's worry for her baby doesn't abate with age, when our peaceful slumber was shattered by a loud BOOM!.   It was quite impossible to discern the origin of the noise, since neither of us were conscious when it occurred.  To me it seemed like it came from outside, or the attic.  Had part of the roof collapsed perhaps?  Had the deck, though sound, given way to the incessant pull of gravity?  We checked the upstairs, the downstairs, the attic, the deck, all to no avail.  Everything looked fine, seemed fine.
We went back to bed.  It was around 3 a.m. and I found it difficult to return to sleep, as did Caty.  Finally, I drifted off,  right before the alarm went off at 5. 
We got up, did our morning routine.  Caty got ready for work, I packed her lunch, made breakfast, the usual.  Then it was time for her to leave.  The garage is attached to the basement, and the basement is also where we keep the cat's litter box and food, otherwise the dog will eat both.  Both of us went to the basement:  Caty to fetch her car and go to work, and me to tend to the cat.  That's when I saw that the lid had erupted off the fermenting tank with great force, and there was ginger beer all over one wall and the floor.  It had been a long time since I'd had a brewing explosion, and also the main reason why I quit making beer and started making wine - fewer explosions.  Foolishly I'd thought that making ginger beer would be less volatile.
Live and learn.  So far no explosions with the hard cider *knock wood*. 

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