Well I've decided to actually put some thought and effort (read Money) into my beer cellar. I've always stashed a 6 pack of any beer I make, just for good measure, but it's time to start building a cellar stock of commercial beers to go along side of the Home Brew.
Step Number 1 is to clean up this mess!
I began by dragging all of my bottles and boxes out into the open where I can get a good look at them. I will be moving all of this into a closed off room where I can get a better handle on the temperature. This will also double as the equipment storage and carboy ageing space for the wine and beer that I have Bulk Ageing.
I will put away what I can. If it's a $24 12 pack of Sierra Nevada Celebration, I may put 24 bottles down, if it's a $12 bottle of Chimay, I may only get one or 2 per year, but I will keep up with what I can at the time.
As this project progresses, I will keep as detailed of records as I can force my ADD brain to keep. I will keep purchase date and Retailer information, price info.(I hope SWMBO doesn't see!) and any other seemingly relevant information.
I will not expect all of the beer to get better with time, and in fact some will degrade significantly, but I will expect it to change either way. I will be able to offer up some radical vertical tastings of different lines of beer.
With the intent of just having something well aged to sip...I've already got a series of Lindimens and other lambics, the home brews, several Arrogant Bastard bottles,and a few different stouts, including Left Hand Brewery Milk Stout.
With the intent of building vertical tastings, I'm going for the Sierra Nevada Celebration, Breckenridge Christmas Ale, Rogue Dead Guy, Double Bastard, and even Ruination.
You know that IPA is going down hill as we speak, but the fact is, it will provide some reference and insight as to the effects of time on beer. Not only will this project be supremely educational, but will be victoriously tasty, and I look forward to every single step along the way.