Saturday, January 26, 2019

Brown Lager - malt bomb?

Despite brewing a series of malty beers - Helles, Vienna lager - last fall, I was craving more malt, specifically a brown ale. I had been using lager yeast, though, and wasn't ready to toss it yet. So I decided to see what would happen if I took a bunch of ingredients that could fit in a brown ale but use a lager yeast.



I had a bunch of old malt on hand. I had purchased Biscuit, brown malt, and special roast in January or February 2018. The base malt -- Munich -- was about 2.5 years old--and it was crushed. In addition, the hops I used -- Fuggles -- were from the 2013 crop, and purchased and opened in 2014. A bunch of old ingredients combined with a lager yeast. Should be a winner right?



It's actually not too bad. With the hops used for bittering only, this is strictly a malty beer. The flavor is cocoa, toast, crackerjack popcorn, caramel, coffee. Maybe just a touch sweet. Could stand to be drier or maybe it just needs some more bitterness. It doesn't really have what I consider traditional lager elements: crisp, dry, sulfury. Either way, it's a tasty beer and kind of scratches that brown ale lager itch.



5 gallon recipe:

7 lbs Munich
1 lb Biscuit
1 lb Brown Malt
.5 lb Special Roast

1 oz Fuggles at 60 minutes

Wyeast 2308

OG: 1.052-54
FG: 1.014-16

2019 homebrewing:

I don't have specific beer plans for the year yet. It would be nice to brew some English styles again, maybe some American IPAs, and perhaps a straightforward dry American Pale Ale along the lines of Sierra Nevada's classic. All four of my kegs have beer in them right now, though, so it could be awhile before I fire up the kettle again. Cheers!

Saturday, January 19, 2019

November 2018 vienna lager

In 2016, I really got into brewing and drinking lagers. Along the way, I rediscovered Boston Lager. And learned that it is one of my favorite beers. I feel like it's been sort of cast aside by the craft beer community. It doesn't feature the sexy hops, it's not a stout, it's not a sour, it's not an IPA. And it's an old beer brewed by a company that really stretches the definition of the term craft. Still, it's a favorite. My first memory of it is from 2003. I was in DC for the summer and a fellow dorm resident found a six pack stashed underneath a staircase. He didn't have a fridge so we drank it on ice. I recall not thinking much of it at the time. It was so hoppy and bitter--completely different than Michelob Light, probably my favorite beer at the time. 

As the years went by and my interest in beer increased, I looked beyond Boston Lager. At the time, I was into pale ales, then IPAs, farmhouse ales, and sours--the usual craft stuff. But as I wrote above, I got into lagers in 2016 and started drinking Boston Lager. It's a really good beer and to Boston Beer's credit, it tastes the same every time. It has a perfect balance of crackery malt and Noble hops. And when I drink it, I'm transported back to Catholic University in 2003.



So, as a homebrewer, why not try to emulate it? That was the intent of this beer. Sadly I haven't had Boston Lager in quite some time so the comparison is only by memory. However, this beer is perhaps within the ball park. It has a nice golden, amber color sort of like Boston Lager. It's hop forward, owing to the four ounces of Hallertau Hersbrucker hops. Boston Lager doesn't use those hops, or at least not exclusively, but being a German varietal it should get me close.



Mine has cleared up nicely thanks to gelatin. It's crisp like a lager should be. It's aromatic--again, of the Noble hops. Sometimes the vienna lager is quite apparent. Maybe as the beer warms? Today as I drink it, it's all hops. However, there is a sort of biscuity, bready malt foundation. Next time I might leave out the Carafa (thrown into the sparge only, for just a few minutes). And maybe reduce the vienna a tad. This beer is very clean and crisp. No apparent off flavors. Oddly I occasionally get a really malty, bready flavor that, for some reason, I think of as "muddy" in mind--maybe it has a slight metallic finish? Maybe it's just a little earthy. Not detecting it as I drink this sample though.

Recipe:

5 lbs Vienna
4 lbs Weyermann Pilsner
3 ounces Carafa III

Hersbrucker hops, 1 ounce each at 60, 30, 15, and 5 minutes.

OG: 1.052-54
FG: ? (around 1.10-12 I think).

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Cascade Pilsner



In 2017 I read about a hop giveaway sponsored by Anheuser Busch in St. Louis. Unfortunately I didn't make it, but when I saw the event advertised for 2018, I decided I would make a point to attend. AB held the event on December 1 and I made a day of the trip, following some personal things I had to attend to elsewhere in the state. First I went to Narrow Gauge, an up-and-coming if not-already-there brewery specializing in hoppy, hazy IPAs. I purchased a four-pack of Hoppy Meal. From there I ventured on to the AB brewery, my first time there actually.

Upon stepping out of my car I could smell the hops wafting through the air, indicating they were brewing at that particular moment. I'm not familiar with their brewing operation, but I imagine they brew 24/7. Their buildings are all-brick and have a German, 19th/early 20th century look. There were people milling about everywhere. AB's reputation has really taken a hit among the craft beer segment, but you wouldn't really know it by all the activity around the brewery.

Inside, in their beer garden, homebrew clubs had set up stations to serve and discuss their beers. And AB employees were handing out various types of hops. By the time I arrived, the only hops remaining were 2017 leaf cascade hops. I brought a few freezer bags and they filled two of them. I probably got between eight and 12 ounces in total. While there I tried a few homebrews, including a tasty ESB with brown malt, as well as a commercial beer. That was Devil's Backbone Hoppy Lager. I could find few details about this beer. I was really hoping it was their Vienna Lager as I've always wanted to try it, but alas. Still, this beer was good.

My AB visit concluded in one of the labs upstairs, where the AB northern hemisphere hop manager led a hop sensory demonstration. He had the same cascade hops arrayed on tables and had us take the hops in our hands and rub them until the oils were released. The aroma was amazing: so pungent, bright, citrusy.

Following AB, I went to Civil Life, probably my all-time favorite brewery. I had a few beers and bought a case -- a mix of ESB, Northern English Brown, and American Brown - to bring back. From there I checked out Urban Chestnut Research Brewery as well as their attached pizzeria, where I ordered a margherita pizza. While they prepared it I walked thorught he Grove neighborhood. On the way back I walked past an Afghan restaurant and was drawn inside by the delicious smells emanating onto the street. Despite having just ordered a pizza, I got Afghan food as well. The pizza and Afghan food -- from Sameems, and looking at their menu I think I got the goat special -- were both delicious. I topped the trip off with visits to Trader Joe's and Total Wine and then made my way home.

The next day I decided to brew. I had been mulling over what to make. I considered a Dunkel. But pilsner sounded good too. I had attempted the style in the past, but failed due to fermentation issues. Ultimately I decided on pilsner. And somewhat inspired by Sierra Nevada's hoppy pilsners in their recent variety packs, I decided I would forgo using the traditional Saaz hops I have on hand and use the AB Cascade hops instead.

So the next day I drove around town looking for distilled water. Both Walmarts I went to were inexplicably out of stock. I eventually found some elsewhere and bought four gallons, aiming for a 2:1 ratio of distilled to tap water. I've never analyzed Springfield water and have never treated my brewing water. So this was pretty much guesswork, though I did read a post somewhere about this particular water ratio.

The recipe was straightforward from there. 100% Weyermann pilsner malt and about five ounces of cascade hops. The brew went smoothly. I ended up with slightly more than five gallons. I was concerned about wort loss in the hops, but I gave the hop bag a squeeze and got most of the wort out.  I racked the wort onto the 2308 yeast cake from my brown lager, another experimental beer. Fermentation took off pretty much immediately and was complete within just a few days. I kegged it two weeks later. Going into the keg, the beer was pretty cloudy, but it has cleared up nicely since then, without the aid of gelatin.

How did it turn out? I like it. It's crisp, pretty clear, though not crystal clear. It's very dry and has the sort of thin mouth-feel of a pilsner. Every once in awhile I can taste the crackery pilsner malt in the background, but in general the dominant flavor is citrusy, lemony hops. It reminds me of a maris otter/cascade SMASH I made early in my homebrewing career. Overall I think this is a successful beer. It doesn't really adhere to any style guideline, but it was fun to experiment and I think it is within the ballpark of a European pilsner. Now I just need to get my kegging equipment figured out. I've been using short draft lines for a long time and I'm getting sick of flat beer. I even purchased new five-foot lines on the advice of the homebrew shop owner, thinking they would be sufficient, but no. The beer is still tasty though. Cheers!

OG: ~ 1.050
FG: ~ 1.010
(approximately 5.25% ABV)

Saturday, December 8, 2018

October 2018 Helles


What is a helles? When I think of the beer, I think German yeast, pilsner malt, and German hops. Little to no hop flavor or aroma. The malt should be the focus of the beer. Absolutely clean fermentation; no esters. Perhaps a touch of corny flavor or sulfur. Low abv, no more than 6%. Even that is on the upper range. A commercial standard: Weihenstephaner Original Premium. Am I correct on this? Perhaps. I'd have to go read the guidelines again.

I had taken a long break from brewing. I last brewed a beer in February of this year. Homebrewing is fairly strenuous work and somewhat time consuming. It takes several hours to brew a beer and clean. I had other things going on in my life and was also drinking a lot of commercial beer. There are so many good ones in the beer coolers these days.

But the itch started growing toward the summer into fall. I imagined the beers I wanted to make. One of which was a helles. I brewed no lagers in 2017 so it seemed a good time to make some more. My homebrew club had a competition in October. I went to help judge the competition at our usual meeting location, the homebrew shop. After judging, I looked around at their yeast selection and found Wyeast 2308. I think it was the only German yeast they had on hand. I was actually looking for a different yeast, maybe 2124 or 2206. Since 2308 was the only one they had on hand, I purchased it. The shop did not have Weyermann pilsner malt, only Avangard. So I went to a different shop and purchased 10 pounds of Weyermann pilsner.



The next day, I threw together a simple recipe in brewtoad. However, I forgot to update the batch size to 5 gallons from 5.5, the default. So I was thinking my 10 pounds of pilsner malt would generate a 1.50 beer. I had an ounce of Hallertau hops in my fridge. They were pretty old if I recall correctly. But these were 60 minute bittering hops so I was not concerned.

Brew day went smoothly. Wort, at 1.060 OG, went into the better bottle very clear. I pitched 2308 yeast from a swollen smack pack. I placed the fermenter in a plastic bucket filled with water and frozen water bottles. And then waited. And waited. Fermentation did not really take off for 24-36 hours. It formed a krausen about an inch thick, which faded fairly quickly. Six days later, expecting it was nearly finished, I checked the gravity. To my surprise, the gravity had only dropped to 1.030. I thought back to a single post I had read on a homebrewing forum about this yeast stalling and panicked. I thought that was happening to my beer. As such, I removed the beer from the bucket and let it ferment at ambient temperature. A few days later it had dropped to 1.020. And finally to 1.010-12 (sometimes hard to read the hydrometer) on November 8 when I kegged it. The yeast were still visibly moving around in the beer at that point, though to a lesser degree than before. However, I did not want the ABV increased any more, so I went ahead and kegged.







































The first samples were hazy and a little sweet. Very grainy. Maybe slightly corny. Perhaps even a savory element. To the point that I thought perhaps others might detect diacetyl. I've never actually detected diacetyl in a beer. I drank it fresh from the keg this way for a few days before adding gelatin. Since then, the beer has started to clear up and is pretty crisp and golden.

By the second weekend in December, this beer has cleared up nicely. Taste is sort of a corny, pilsner malt with no detectable hops, in the aroma or flavor. Sometimes I pick up a musty almost metallic smell. But i noticed it yesterday while having some adjunct american lagers. So I'm not sure that its a flaw so much as a feature. That said, I also have Urban Chestnut Zwickel, which is not really a helles but sure tastes like one, and I didn't notice an aroma like that. Overall it's pretty drinkable and I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out. Not quite sure what I'd do to improve it. If I could somehow achieve the bready biscuity malt flavor that UC Zwickel has, I'd do it. But I don't have a clue what they do (their web site says their beer has caramel malt ... what!?).

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Kitchen sink pale ale thing

Every once in awhile it's fun to throw caution to the wind and just experiment. Except for when I first started homebrewing and didn't know what I was doing, I've generally tried to adhere to style guidelines. That doesn't mean that Brewtoad always tells me that my recipe conforms to the style, but they seem to be in the ballpark.

So this was a fun beer just to throw together with spare ingredients that I had. A little of this, a little of that. Literally. This beer has six different malts in it. Some of which were years old (some two-year-old pale ale (uncrushed); three-year special roast and victory (crushed)). But the resultant beer seems to indicate they are no worse for wear.

I also had a pound of 2016 cascade hops that I bought from YVH last year. I was wondering how the roasty malts would play with the grapefruit flavors from the hops. And now I have the answer.

Appearance: Still cloudy. Red. Tan head.

Taste: Maybe a touch metallic. I was thinking blood for some reason. Which sounds strange but I think it's just the way the roasty malts interact with teh grapefruit and bitterenss and it's only slightly percepitble in the finish and not unpleasant. Otherwise, notes of caramel, grapefruit. Breadiness. Kind of hard to detect roastiness actually. Regarding metallic tastes, this is something I don't usually perceive in my beer, so I don't believe it's a water issue.

Overall: An enjoyable beer. If I were given this beer not knowing anything about it, I feel like I would enjoy it. Which brings to mind something I've thought of often about my beers. Sometimes I wish I could enjoy them as I would a commercial beer or another homebrewer's, i.e., not being involved in the process and knowing everything about it. The first taste I have of any beer is impacted by my knowledge of what went into making it. Sometimes I wish I could just taste them blindly and say, yes I like this, or no I don't.

Another beer that is long gone. In fact, I dumped the remains (maybe half a keg) last week when I kegged my October 2018 smash/helles. I dry hopped this beer and intended to do so for only a few days, but ended up dropping the hop bag to the bottom of the keg when I opened it. So every pour had some hop bits floating around. The worst problem is that it sat in my garage for the warm spring months and I think some refermentation occurred. It seemed to have a slight off flavor after that.

Styrian Bitter tasting

If you want bright, punchy, "juicy" hops, look elsewhere. This beer isn't for you. But if you like hop flavor and bitterness and easy drinking beer, this is the one for you.

I brewed it on December 17, 2017, using the yeast cake from my brown ale. The brown ale was exceptionally clear after sitting in the fermenter since November 10 and I think the yeast sort of went dormant. Normally when I pitch fresh wort onto a yeast cake, the yeast starts fermenting it immediately. This one took close to 24 hours before things were really up and running. Initially there was a really odd fermentation as well. A krausen wasn't forming. Instead, the bubbles were floating to the surface and immediately dissipating, sort of like pouring soda. I got so worried that I impatiently pulled a sample with my thief and tasted it. Nothing wrong so I let it go. And a few hours later there was a normal creamy thick krausen on top. And I also had to install a blow off tube because it was seeping through the airlock.

I'm not sure how I thought of this beer. Perhaps I had read about Styrian Goldings somewhere and thought I'd try them? Whatever the thought process behind choosing the hops, the resultant beer is quite good, and I'm glad I used them.

It's not easy to describe the flavor. Some beers have flavors that are readily describable, others not so much. I've even heard of some hops tasting like chocolate. That's an interesting one. This one certainly doesn't taste like chocolate. What does it taste like? Maybe tea. Herbs. Grassiness. Maybe just the slightest flavor of lemon or orange juice.

Either way, they work well with in this beer, which is a real joy to drink. That was probably helped by the low ABV. The OG was 1.042. It was actually 1.046-48, but I added two 16 ounce bottles of water to the wort before pitching yeast (pitch #3 from the 1469 smack pack that fermented my ESB and Brown ale). FG was 1.014, probably owing to a mash temp in the 160s. I didn't intend to mash that high, but really didn't feel like waiting around with my cooler uncovered for it to cool off. According to Brewer's Friend, that calculates to a 3.68% ABV. This has to be the lowest alcohol beer I've ever brewed.

That's fine, though, because it makes it really drinkable. It's not thin. Good aroma, which matches the taste. Though sometimes I feel like I can detect a bit of funk in the aroma. When I kegged it, I noticed that some of the bubbles on the surface looked a little "dry," as if they were trapped below a thin surface of pellicle or something. Just to be safe, I went ahead and got a new smack pack of 1469 for the stout I brewed the same day.

Again, a really tasty beer and it seems like one I could call my flagship pale ale. I just love that it doesn't slam you in the face with bitterness, hop flavor, and sweetness. Yet it's not bland either. Just a really tasty, solid beer and a reminder that I need to keep brewing more session beers.

One other thing, the maris otter. I'm not sure if I can really pick it up or not. Sometimes, if I try it after it's warmed up a bit, I think I'm detecting some grainy, biscuity flavor that I assume Maris Otter tastes like, but I'm really not sure. I might have to make this one again with regular 2 row and see how it turns out. I had thought about doing a smash, but I didn't find the idea of a golden pale beer appealing this time. I've made a ton of those beers in my career and have ignore crystal malts during much of that time. It's time for a comeback!

Recipe:

5 gallons

7 lbs Maris Otter
.5 Crystal 60

1 oz Styrian Goldings (4% AA) at 60
1 oz SG at 30

Wyeast 1469.

This post has sat in my drafts for going on a year. This beer is long gone. I'm not even sure if I have any photos of it. It was a nice beer though. However, I brought it to a bottle share and I think only one person tried it. Homebrew -- at least a modest English bitter featuring restrained hops -- versus IPAs, sours, stouts and whatever else is all the rage is sadly not going to win out. 

Saturday, March 31, 2018

English Bitter







































Sometimes life gets in the way. Of drinking and thinking about beer and homebrewing. At this point, I don't remember when I brewed this beer. Sometime in February I believe. I think I kegged it just a week after I brewed it.

It has cleared nicely. Very dry. Sort of a biscuity nutty flavor I guess. From the biscuit malt I suppose. Overly bitter though. Maybe too many hops. Not sure. Subtle hop flavor. Kind of fruity. These are old hops, 2013 crop I think, purchased in 2014 and I had opened the mylar bag that year. Aroma has some subtle fruity hops.

Probably not the best beer I've brewed but it's still enjoyable!







































https://www.brewtoad.com/recipes/english-bitter-0f4b4c


Saturday, February 10, 2018

Wyeast 1469 West Yorkshire

I've decided I'm a big fan of this yeast. It ferments quickly and vigorously. It seems to impart some fruity flavors to beers, though esters are something that have always been hard for me to distinguish from hop flavor. In my opinion, it ferments pretty clean. I certainly don't detect any estery flavors in the stout I brewed, though I suppose the chocolate and roast malts might cover them up. Someone who tried my Northern English Brown Ale described it as fruity though.

It flocculates well if you give it time. I have a bitter on tap right now that I've not fined with gelatin and it's cleared up nicely, though not crystal clear. And the aforementioned brown ale was extremely clear going into the keg, probably owing to sitting in the fermenter for over five weeks (longer than usual for my process).

It also attenuates pretty well, beyond Wyeast's specs, so plan for that. However, if you mash high, it will attenuate low, like any other yeast.

Overall, this is a fantastic yeast for all sorts of ales, regardless of continent. Cheers!

Stout tasting



This is a really great beer. It was one of those where I just knew it was going to be great when I tasted it -- a gravity sample -- for the first time after fermentation. I kegged it the same day I brewed my mish-mash kitchen sink pale ale, so about three weeks ago. It's been on the gas and pretty well carbonated for awhile now. Interestingly, it finished at 1.016, well above what I anticipated. I don't think I mashed high, and I let the yeast ferment it fully (i.e. the krausen fell). It doesn't taste sweet though. In fact it's very dry.

Appearance: Black, but ruby on the edges and if you hold a light to it. Tan head.

Aroma: Milk chocolate. Sweetness. Coffee.

Flavor: Chocolate. Some roastiness. Pretty low bitterness. Maybe a touch of coffee. Very dry.

Overall: very enjoyable beer and I don't think I would change anything about the recipe. According to Brewer's Friend, that makes this a 3.94% abv beer. It's amazing that you can pack so much flavor into such a low alcohol beer.



Changes for next time? Although I mention above that I wouldn't change the recipe, I might try modifying the water slightly. I never do anything with water when I brew. But I wonder if a bit of distilled water (maybe half the total volume) might make this a little more crisp. I seem to remember the competition example being very crisp and the malt really popping. Mine has a sort of softness.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

My homebrew and Civil Life Northern Brown Ale side by side


I've never done this before. I've brewed clone kits/recipes (NB's Sierra Madre and Caribou Slobber).  Mostly though I've brewed my own recipes without trying to emulate anything in particular. More styles than particular beers.

So it was with my homebrew NEBA as well. I used The Civil Life's information in crafting my recipe, but I wasn't necessarily trying to clone their beer.


Nonetheless, here are my notes. The most prominent difference is the roast/toast character imparted by the brown malt. Their beer must have a lot more of it, because it's strongly apparent in the nose and flavor. Whereas, mine is more of a background flavor, sort of melding with a pretty significant caramel note, and the aroma of mine is not as strong.

Mine is just a hair lighter than TCL's. Mine seems to have better "head retention."  That's never been a goal of mine in brewing, but I did notice a difference.  It might just be because mine was from a keg pour and theirs from a can (and a fairly non-vigourous pour).

Also, their beer is dryer and more carbonated. Again, the aroma of TCL's is stronger, of coffee, chocolate, roast, toast. No caramel flavor in theirs.

All of that said, mine is a really good beer and still up there with the best I've ever brewed. Someone who tried it expressed surprise when I mentioned adding more brown malt. But I think I will. It's rare for me to brew the same beer twice (maybe just one beer in the over four years that I've been brewing?) and the challenge of brewing their is enticing. Nonetheless, this beer is certainly worthy of rebrewing as is! Cheers!

Edit February 10, 2018:

This keg has been out in my garage to take advantage of the cold weather, since my kegerator, which fits just two kegs, is full. I kegged a pale ale last weekend in a separate keg and put it in the garage as well. I have only one picnic tap to switch between the two kegs in the garage. So I removed the tap from the brown ale and put it on the pale ale. Yesterday morning, I went to Airgas and exchanged a 20 lb CO2 tank. I came home and topped off each keg with CO2 to make sure they hadn't lost pressure after my CO2 tank ran dry. I noticed a some beer on the out post on the brown ale keg, but didn't think much of it. I'd seen it before the other day. It definitely wasn't flowing out. Unfortunately, by the time I got home, that slight drip turned into a full leak, with probably one or two gallons of really good brown ale spewing all over the floor. 😭 Oh well, at least I got to enjoy most of it, and on the plus side, I have space for the bitter I brewed last weekend.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Stout Brew Day - 1/6/18

Last summer, my homebrew club hosted a competition and the winner was a really nice stout. The brewer described it as an Irish stout. I reached out to him for the recipe and he was kind enough to reveal most of it, though remained coy about certain aspects, such as the starting gravity and water treatment. On top of that, the beer is actually from the second runnings of a bigger beer, adding even more variability. But I had the grains and their respective percentages for the beer and adjusted the amounts according to the gravity that I wanted to achieve.

I thought a beer in the 4.5-5% range would be good. I've been aiming to brew beers that are more drinkable lately, which means less alcohol and less intense flavors (which really just means less hoppy).  So I designed a beer with about 8.25 lbs of grain total and a starting gravity of 1.046.

I started brewing around 11:30 AM and was finished by about 5:15. During that time I also kegged another beer and really took my time in general. I could have been finished earlier if I was really efficient. But either way, this was a fairly short brew day by my standards. It also helped that it has been really cold lately, so the ground water was extra cold, so chilling the wort took less time. So cold in fact that my hose seemed to be clogged with ice, which was concerning at first, but it cleared up after a few minutes.

Total brew time was also reduced since I had the brew shop mix and crush everything together, something I normally don't do. So I didn't have to spend time measuring grains at home. They mixed and crushed 7 lbs Avangard pale ale, 8 ounces chocolate, 6 ounces carafa ii, 3 ounces roast barley, and 3 ounces flaked wheat.

Into the mash tun it went. This time I was much more careful with the mash temperature. It mashed at 152 for about 1 hour and 15 minutes. I added 2 ounces of 4.5% AA Fuggles for about 33 IBUs total. Perhaps too much? The wort was less chocolatey than I thought it might be. Maybe even fruity, from the hops I'm guessing. But fermentation usually rounds those flavors out, so I'm expecting more malt in the finished beer. And hopefully this one turns out to my liking. The original beer was fantastic. Really smooth. No acrid flavors. I don't like acrid flavors in stouts. I prefer a smooth, chocolate flavor.

OG was around 1.046 with about 5 gallons of wort. I kegged my Styrian bitter and noticed some bubbles on top seemed to have a slight film. The beer tasted fine, but I didn't want to take any chances. So I bought a fresh 1469 smack pack. Fermentation had taken off by morning on January 7.