Wednesday, May 10, 2017

New Texican

Hey everybody! It's been a little crazy this week, but I finally made some time to sit down and write about the awesome brew day I had on Saturday. Why was it awesome? Well, not only was it Big Brew Day (read as: homebrewers all over the country celebrating the art of homebrewing), but it was also the very first time I got to brew at our new home! I was just going to brew a basic American Brown Ale using a kit from MoreBeer (seriously love those guys!). However, special occasions call for special beer, and so New Texican Brown Ale was born!
You're probably wondering, "WTF is a New Texican?" Well it's a word I made up to describe where I'm from. I am a native and proud New Mexican (yes, it's a state). I was born and raised in a little town called EspaƱola located in the northern part of the state. I LOVE New Mexico, but an interesting thing happened when my husband and I moved to Galveston, Texas back in 2009. I felt connected to Galveston and to Texas, like I belonged here. I even have a doppelganger here, according to several random strangers I've met through awkward conversations ("Oh hey, how are you?! I haven't seen you since high school." *confused look* "Didn't you go to Ball High?" "No . . ." "Oh sorry, haha, you look exactly like a girl I went to school with.") When we got transferred to California, I spent most of those 3 years homesick for Galveston. When we found out we were coming back, I almost cried because we were going home. "I thought New Mexico was your home?" Well, they both are. Thus the term, New Texican (seriously, if people can have dual citizenship, why can't we have dual state residency?)

I wanted this beer to reflect both of my homes, so I tweaked the recipe kit a little. To represent my New Mexican side, I chose to add some red chile powder. Now, unless you're a New Mexican or have spent some time in the state, that would seem like a weird choice. Ask any New Mexican, though, and they'll tell you we put that shit on everything! Now don't start gagging. When I say chile, I'm not talking about the mix of spices, meat, and beans. I'm talking about chile peppers grown in New Mexico, dried and ground into powder. It's pure deliciousness and there's nothing more New Mexican than our chile! (Fun fact: New Mexico's official state question is "Red or Green?", referring to whether a person wants red or green chile with their meal.) To represent my Texas side, I chose to add honey from Gulf Coast Honey Bee Farms. I needed something sweet to balance out the spice of the chile. Their hives are located in Galveston county, and what better way to capture the essence of a place than through the bees that fly all around it? A secondary reason for this choice is my husband's obsession with honey. Every time I say I'm ready to brew another batch, I get, "Can we put honey in it?" So this time it was a win-win!

Brew day went great! We chose a shady spot near the garage, so much better than getting baked in the sun next to a busy swimming pool. I bought a drinking water hose to fill my brew pot from the spigot outside, so much better than lugging a bunch of gallon size water jugs down the stairs. We only had one neighbor ask, "Whatcha cookin?", and cleanup was a breeze! I had enough space to hose down all the bigger pieces of equipment and give them a light scrub, so much better than kneeling down by the tub and scrubbing away at a giant pot. The initial sample tasted great, just a hint of spice. I'm so excited for the final result, and to debut my new logo on the labels for this brew. The logo is also a play on the New Texican theme, but that's the only hint I'm giving!

Head over to my Instagram page, @drunkenborrachobrewing, if you wanna check out pics and videos from our Big Brew Day. To my fellow homebrewers, drop me a line and let me know what kind of brewing activities you did to celebrate the weekend!


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