I finally transferred the beer from the bucket to the barrel. It is a tale of woe that will make ye glad ye be not a pirate! Or... a brewer, or something. Anyway, yes, the saga continues and the amounts of it I got in mouth (attempting to get it to syphon into the barrel) suggest that the extended bucket brewing haven't made it too evil or undrinkable.
As ever, continue if you wish to know more.
The evening began with a successful attempt to clear out the barrel with a brush bought for that purpose. There is nothing quite so odd as finding that something that looks like an elongated toilet brush is, in fact, necessary to get the last skeins of yeast from the barrel. Hence the title of this post, if truth be told. Still, it did the trick, eventually, and the use of blasts of water to rinse it out eventually made the barrel worth being used again. Meanwhile, the beer itself, safely in the barrel at something like 25 degrees centigrade, was burping occasionally. Anyway, the barrel was cleared.
Then the bucket was removed to the pantry (we have a pantry) and placed on the shelf there and the tube was added for syphoning. Anna was called in to help with this part, and the whole affair was a tad badly done, very Heath Robinson. I sucked the tube and got it going without too much trouble first time (though I did get a mouthful of very artificial raspberry flavoured malt that I had to spit out) and we started filling the barrel up. Realising a little late that I wanted to get a couple of bottles of this to hand out I enlisted Anna to help and it... well, let's just say I ended up with a bottle and half. Eventually.
Also, much sticky liquid on the floor. Loads of it. And then I realised that I'd read the instructions incorrectly and had tried to cool the brew immediately rather than waiting two days. Mind you, having left the brew out for as long as I did it perhaps doesn't matter. Who knows, right?
Plus points: I have a brush and I have the propensity to try again. Maybe not in a heatwave. Especially when I have discovered the power of a heater and slow brewing around the winter time. Aaaaand, it's fruit beer, traditionally used to mask a bad brew anyway.