I managed to sneak a couple hours this afternoon and bottle the beer, in the hopes that it’ll be carbonated and ready to drink by Christmas Eve. That completes the batch, for better or for worse. Final gravity was around 1.020, so with an initial gravity of 1.070, that translates to about 7.5% alcohol by volume. Should be just the thing to prepare for the Church pageant. 🙂 Total bottle tally was: 21 × 22-ounce bottles and 12 × 12-ounce bottles, plus about 8 extra ounces which I dutifully consumed. It was quite good. Not sure what it is, but the beer always tastes better out of the bottle than out of the hydrometer flask.
Lesson learned for today: I forgot that it’s harder to siphon out of a carboy than a plastic bucket. You can’t reach into the carboy and control the depth of the hose. I lost my suction a couple times because of the hose’s tendency to coil up, and my inability to hold it where I needed it. Next time I will use a racking cane, which should make it a lot easier.