Author Topic: Home Brew discussion  (Read 61038 times)

cambridgecyclist

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #50 on: March 04, 2014, 10:51:22 AM »
Gratzer
Do you have a recipe worked up for this one yet or have you already done it before?  This is one I would love to do, but probably not on a commercial scale.  We did a Lichtenhainer last year using a portion of the Weyermann Oak-Smoked Wheat and co-pitched ale yeast and lactobacillus.  Let's just say that it moved...slowly.

  I hadn't made gratzer before. I took the guidelines from the Nov/Dec 2012 article on gratzer in Zymurgy and customized their process for my equipment using Beersmith. The most complex aspect of this beer was the multi-step infusion mash. I hit the strike temperatures at each rest pretty closely (+/- 2 degrees F), though, so I'm expecting decent results.
  Lacto can take a *long* time!
  I pitched this beer onto a washed bed of Wyeast 1007 (pseudolager yeast) from a Kolsch so there was practically no lag time.

I do love the flavor and aroma of the Weyermann Oak-Smoked Wheat malt though, and while Bamberger Rauchbier and smoked beer in general are some of my favorite beers, I'm not sure how the hoppiness of Gratzer would blend with the smoke.  Might have to get a chunk of Lublin hops and just do a homebrew batch to find out.

  The aroma from the oak-smoked wheat malt was amazing. I love smoked beers. This recipe worked out to be about 20 IBUs, so not bitter at all. It will be interesting to get a sense of what flavor contributions the Lublin hops provide.

40andgrowing

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #51 on: March 04, 2014, 01:21:32 PM »
What a great thread! I just took my first dive into homebrewing this weekend. I talked to a friend of mine who had previous brewing experience and he showed me the ropes. It also helps that he has all of the equipment so no cash needed for that.

We're both hop heads so we made a 6 gallon IIPA extract batch. We used 13 lbs of dry malt extract and 4 types of hops, Amarillo, Cascade, Citra and Centennial. Hops were added at 60 mins, 30 mins and at the end of the boil. We also dry hopped with about 4 oz in the fermenter. OG was 1079 and we're expecting to go down to 1019. We're trying for something similar to Southern Tier 2XIPA. ABV should be close to 8% and IBU's near 100.

I think the total cost for the ingredients was about $90 which will give us 64 12-ounce beers. Not a huge savings compared to retail, but being a double we used a ton of malt which added to the cost. We're expecting fermentation to end in about 6 more days and then we'll move it a 6 gallon carboy for a secondary fermentation. Hopefully all goes well and we have some good tasting beer in about 3 more weeks.

Great info DB, I'll have to look into that as I learn more....


You don't need liquid yeast anymore for an IPA,  the Safale US-05 is the same as Wyeast 1056 strain, and it's cheaper with a lot more yeast cells.     And then get you some Citra hops,  you can make really floral, hoppy IPA's with less ounces than some other varieties.  I'm using 2 oz at flameout, and 2 more to dry hop and getting great hop aroma.  Use something else (chinook) for the bittering hop.  Ditto on reusing yeast,  washing yeast is easy, but a little time consuming.   I'm making 6 gallon double IPA's for less than $25 not including propane costs.   FWIW, I buy grain by the 50 lb bag, and hops by the pound.  I've also had great results pitching a new beer on the old yeast cake, but that means bottling and brewing day are the same.   Lots of good info on homebrewtalk.com.




skunkfunk

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #52 on: March 04, 2014, 01:33:57 PM »
What a great thread! I just took my first dive into homebrewing this weekend. I talked to a friend of mine who had previous brewing experience and he showed me the ropes. It also helps that he has all of the equipment so no cash needed for that.

We're both hop heads so we made a 6 gallon IIPA extract batch. We used 13 lbs of dry malt extract and 4 types of hops, Amarillo, Cascade, Citra and Centennial. Hops were added at 60 mins, 30 mins and at the end of the boil. We also dry hopped with about 4 oz in the fermenter. OG was 1079 and we're expecting to go down to 1019. We're trying for something similar to Southern Tier 2XIPA. ABV should be close to 8% and IBU's near 100.

I think the total cost for the ingredients was about $90 which will give us 64 12-ounce beers. Not a huge savings compared to retail, but being a double we used a ton of malt which added to the cost. We're expecting fermentation to end in about 6 more days and then we'll move it a 6 gallon carboy for a secondary fermentation. Hopefully all goes well and we have some good tasting beer in about 3 more weeks.

Great info DB, I'll have to look into that as I learn more....
Not to be a negative nancy, but you won't get six gallons unless you have already accounted for the following factors. You lose about 12 ounces of beer per ounce of hops. You also lose beer to the trub. I'll be mildly surprised if you get more than 52 or so bottles.

I'd also discourage anyone else from making such a beast of a recipe their first attempt. Your first beer is probably going to turn out just fine, but it will hopefully not be your finest work. Did you mash any grain for this recipe? For best cost efficiency, I'd recommend at least partial mash (if not all grain) on something like this - it will save you money for only an hour of your time. A partial mash can be done with no additional equipment aside from a thermometer.

Cromacster

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #53 on: March 05, 2014, 09:54:51 AM »
What a great thread! I just took my first dive into homebrewing this weekend. I talked to a friend of mine who had previous brewing experience and he showed me the ropes. It also helps that he has all of the equipment so no cash needed for that.

We're both hop heads so we made a 6 gallon IIPA extract batch. We used 13 lbs of dry malt extract and 4 types of hops, Amarillo, Cascade, Citra and Centennial. Hops were added at 60 mins, 30 mins and at the end of the boil. We also dry hopped with about 4 oz in the fermenter. OG was 1079 and we're expecting to go down to 1019. We're trying for something similar to Southern Tier 2XIPA. ABV should be close to 8% and IBU's near 100.

I think the total cost for the ingredients was about $90 which will give us 64 12-ounce beers. Not a huge savings compared to retail, but being a double we used a ton of malt which added to the cost. We're expecting fermentation to end in about 6 more days and then we'll move it a 6 gallon carboy for a secondary fermentation. Hopefully all goes well and we have some good tasting beer in about 3 more weeks.

Great info DB, I'll have to look into that as I learn more....
Not to be a negative nancy, but you won't get six gallons unless you have already accounted for the following factors. You lose about 12 ounces of beer per ounce of hops. You also lose beer to the trub. I'll be mildly surprised if you get more than 52 or so bottles.

I'd also discourage anyone else from making such a beast of a recipe their first attempt. Your first beer is probably going to turn out just fine, but it will hopefully not be your finest work. Did you mash any grain for this recipe? For best cost efficiency, I'd recommend at least partial mash (if not all grain) on something like this - it will save you money for only an hour of your time. A partial mash can be done with no additional equipment aside from a thermometer.

I'd agree with Skunk on the amount you are going to get.  You will lose alot with that much hops, and to the trub, and more if you have any overflow during fermentation.

I would also suggest letting the secondary go longer than 2 weeks.  Most high gravity beers I have done I usually end up going secondary for atleast 6 weeks.  But, check the gravity as you go to make sure you hit your mark.  Fermentation is a tricky beast that varies for a number of reasons.

Then if you are bottle conditioning, this could take another 4-6 weeks.

My longest secondary I did was an Imperial Stout, took around 5 months in the seconday to hit its gravity mark.  This was mostly because it was a wee bit cold in my basement.  Bottling took another 4 weeks for it to carb up.

Also, since this is your first foray in home brewing.  I would suggest doing some simple beers.  Single grain, single hops (SMaSH) are fun to do.  Not everything needs to be a triple double ball slamming hop fest.  The way I see it,  learn the process.  Learn what different time hop additions actually do to the beer.  If all grain, learn what a higher or lower mash temp does to it.

Doing SMaSH will help you learn what brewing is all about.  Then you can melt your tongue on some ball slamming hoppy beers.  Although nothing says you can't do two (or more) beers at once!

Thats just my take on brewing, cheers.

nedwin

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #54 on: March 05, 2014, 12:02:57 PM »
Those of you that buy malt by the 50lb, do you buy base malts in that large quantities and specialties from the local brewshop?  what about bulk hops?  The last recipe I did had 3 or 4 different hops, I don't think I brew enough to keep 3 or four pounds of hops on hand.

skunkfunk

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #55 on: March 05, 2014, 01:27:47 PM »
What a great thread! I just took my first dive into homebrewing this weekend. I talked to a friend of mine who had previous brewing experience and he showed me the ropes. It also helps that he has all of the equipment so no cash needed for that.

We're both hop heads so we made a 6 gallon IIPA extract batch. We used 13 lbs of dry malt extract and 4 types of hops, Amarillo, Cascade, Citra and Centennial. Hops were added at 60 mins, 30 mins and at the end of the boil. We also dry hopped with about 4 oz in the fermenter. OG was 1079 and we're expecting to go down to 1019. We're trying for something similar to Southern Tier 2XIPA. ABV should be close to 8% and IBU's near 100.

I think the total cost for the ingredients was about $90 which will give us 64 12-ounce beers. Not a huge savings compared to retail, but being a double we used a ton of malt which added to the cost. We're expecting fermentation to end in about 6 more days and then we'll move it a 6 gallon carboy for a secondary fermentation. Hopefully all goes well and we have some good tasting beer in about 3 more weeks.

Great info DB, I'll have to look into that as I learn more....
Not to be a negative nancy, but you won't get six gallons unless you have already accounted for the following factors. You lose about 12 ounces of beer per ounce of hops. You also lose beer to the trub. I'll be mildly surprised if you get more than 52 or so bottles.

I'd also discourage anyone else from making such a beast of a recipe their first attempt. Your first beer is probably going to turn out just fine, but it will hopefully not be your finest work. Did you mash any grain for this recipe? For best cost efficiency, I'd recommend at least partial mash (if not all grain) on something like this - it will save you money for only an hour of your time. A partial mash can be done with no additional equipment aside from a thermometer.

I'd agree with Skunk on the amount you are going to get.  You will lose alot with that much hops, and to the trub, and more if you have any overflow during fermentation.

I would also suggest letting the secondary go longer than 2 weeks.  Most high gravity beers I have done I usually end up going secondary for atleast 6 weeks.  But, check the gravity as you go to make sure you hit your mark.  Fermentation is a tricky beast that varies for a number of reasons.

Then if you are bottle conditioning, this could take another 4-6 weeks.

My longest secondary I did was an Imperial Stout, took around 5 months in the seconday to hit its gravity mark.  This was mostly because it was a wee bit cold in my basement.  Bottling took another 4 weeks for it to carb up.

Also, since this is your first foray in home brewing.  I would suggest doing some simple beers.  Single grain, single hops (SMaSH) are fun to do.  Not everything needs to be a triple double ball slamming hop fest.  The way I see it,  learn the process.  Learn what different time hop additions actually do to the beer.  If all grain, learn what a higher or lower mash temp does to it.

Doing SMaSH will help you learn what brewing is all about.  Then you can melt your tongue on some ball slamming hoppy beers.  Although nothing says you can't do two (or more) beers at once!

Thats just my take on brewing, cheers.

On those fermentation times - make sure you dry hop at the end! Don't leave the hops in for more than 10 days before bottling, and drink that thing as soon as it's carbonated. You lose hops flavor very quickly. My DIPA is only at it's best for a couple of weeks before it starts losing flavor.

PantsOnFire

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #56 on: March 05, 2014, 02:25:14 PM »
I buy 50# of US 2-Row Pale and 55# of Maris Otter every year, which handles the majority of my base malts. 

Highly-kilned malts last pretty long in storage so I buy them in 1-10# quantities (things like Crystal 40L, Munich, and Roasted end up getting a lot of use in my recipes).  One-off stuff that constitutes less than 1 or 2% of grain bills or rarely gets used at all I buy by the pound (melanoiden, special B, etc.).

Hops I buy certain varieties by the pound (Centennial, Magnum, Goldings) and vacuum pack them and deep freeze them.  Specialties I'll pay the ripoff /oz price because the rest of a pound would get wasted anyway. 

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #57 on: March 05, 2014, 03:06:42 PM »
I buy 50# of US 2-Row Pale and 55# of Maris Otter every year, which handles the majority of my base malts. 


Where do you buy them?  I'll be inclined to do the same after a few batches under my belts.

Have you ran the figures on your commonly brewed beers?

PantsOnFire

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #58 on: March 06, 2014, 07:46:25 AM »
I usually buy the bulk sacks from my LHBS, but sometimes when I know I won't be able to get to the store anytime soon I'll buy from Northern Brewer.  There are also group buys for pallets of grain periodically on the HBT website.  I've never participated, but the pricing is very attractive.
 
For hops, I've gone to HopsDirect/Puterbaugh Farms, and FresHops for most of my bulk purchases.  LHBS for small purchases.  All this may change now that my LHBS is pretty damn big, carries more bulk stuff, and has a web presence.  I also grew my own hops at my old house, so a few of my late summer hoppy beers had "free" Cascades and Centennials in them (only the late additions since I didn't want to guesstimate the IBUs).   Whenever we finish building and landscaping around our new place, I'll get some rhizomes and start growing again. 

My BeerSmith software tracks all my brew prices but I don't have access to it at the moment (on another computer) and I'd have to double check that I entered real dollar figures when I put the items in inventory.  Cost went WAY down when I went all-grain and bought in bulk... going from memory, base malts come out to $1-1.50 per gallon brewed or something like that.  You still have to factor in specialty malts and hops, plus depreciation on equipment, non-recipe consumables (water treatments, cleaners, sanitizers), energy cost, etc. but suffice it to say if you are going to brew your own, you can beat commercial prices even brewing extract brews, and with all-grain it's a no-brainer. 

40andgrowing

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #59 on: March 06, 2014, 09:15:42 AM »
Skunk and Crom, good advice, I agree I/we went a little over the top with my first homebrew. Like I said luckily my buddy has experience so it made it seem relatively simple (silly noob). I'll definitely take into account the fact that we should let it ferment longer in secondary and that I'll want to let it bottle condition for a while as well.

As far as the amount we'll get, we had a full 6 gallons go into the primary so I expect we'll get a decent amount out of it, but you are correct we'll lose some in the trub which I didn't account for. We started out with 6 gallons of fresh water, but added a gallon of "tea" that we made steeping some grains for 30 minutes. That's why we were able to get 6 gallons out of the wort and into the primary. Sorry I don't have all the details on what we did, all the info is at my buddy's place.

Hopefully it turns out well, I'll let you know. We're already discussing another beer and are talking about going all grain with a simpler recipe. Thanks for the comments, there's a hell of a lot to know about brewing, now I know that.

skunkfunk

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #60 on: March 06, 2014, 09:25:33 AM »
Brewing your own oatmeal stout can be very cost effective. My oatmeal stout is every bit as good as a Sam Smith Oatmeal Stout, which costs about $2.50 a bottle. I brewed an entire fifty bottle batch for under $30. Some of the fancier English style ales don't really take all that much grain or hops, and can be made with the excellent nottingham dry yeast on the cheap.

For instance, doppelbocks, by comparison, cost about the same amount at the liquor store but are much more expensive to brew. The ingredients I would require to brew an ayinger celebrator clone would cost $70 from my homebrew shop. They require much more grain, a lot of yeast cells, as well as a means of accurate temperature control for both fermentation and lagering, which can take months for such a high gravity style.

jdoolin

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #61 on: March 06, 2014, 10:17:54 AM »
It's Brew Day!!

My mash/lauter tun cooler conversion worked magnificently and I've currently got 6 gallons of wort coming to a boil.

I also tried something I'd heard about called a "hot scotchie", where you mix a little bit of Scotch (I had some Glenlivet on hand) with some of the sweet wort right out of the mash tun.  I will ALWAYS do this from now on.  That was delicious!

So anyway, 90 minute boil coming up.  Two hop additions.  Pretty simple recipe.  But man it's good to be back in business.

Cromacster

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #62 on: March 06, 2014, 10:22:58 AM »
there's a hell of a lot to know about brewing, now I know that.

Aint that the truth.

People always harp on the big producers bud miller etc, but with how many variables that go into the process, its pretty impressive they can produce such a consistent product.  Add in that its made in different locations on top standard brewing variables it becomes even more impressive.

jdoolin

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #63 on: March 06, 2014, 10:23:56 AM »
there's a hell of a lot to know about brewing, now I know that.

Aint that the truth.

People always harp on the big producers bud miller etc, but with how many variables that go into the process, its pretty impressive they can produce such a consistent product.  Add in that its made in different locations on top standard brewing variables it becomes even more impressive.

If only the beer were as impressive as the effort put into it.  :-/

skunkfunk

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #64 on: March 06, 2014, 10:25:34 AM »
there's a hell of a lot to know about brewing, now I know that.

Aint that the truth.

People always harp on the big producers bud miller etc, but with how many variables that go into the process, its pretty impressive they can produce such a consistent product.  Add in that its made in different locations on top standard brewing variables it becomes even more impressive.

BMC does an excellent job producing the stuff they make. It's actually not easy to clone a bud light. They are making exactly what they want to make, and that's difficult. The problem is that they're not trying to make anything that I want to drink.

Cromacster

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #65 on: March 06, 2014, 10:26:19 AM »
there's a hell of a lot to know about brewing, now I know that.

Aint that the truth.

People always harp on the big producers bud miller etc, but with how many variables that go into the process, its pretty impressive they can produce such a consistent product.  Add in that its made in different locations on top standard brewing variables it becomes even more impressive.

If only the beer were as impressive as the effort put into it.  :-/

Well, you get what you pay for.  At 17.99 for 24 16oz cans what do you expect?

Cromacster

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #66 on: March 06, 2014, 10:27:51 AM »
there's a hell of a lot to know about brewing, now I know that.

Aint that the truth.

People always harp on the big producers bud miller etc, but with how many variables that go into the process, its pretty impressive they can produce such a consistent product.  Add in that its made in different locations on top standard brewing variables it becomes even more impressive.

If only the beer were as impressive as the effort put into it.  :-/

Well, you get what you pay for.  At 17.99 for 24 16oz cans what do you expect?

Expanding on that.

I've always wondered why the industry went to lager's as the staple beer.  Its more expensive and time intensive than standard ales..

Anyone know the history on this?

jdoolin

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #67 on: March 06, 2014, 10:38:06 AM »
I've always wondered why the industry went to lager's as the staple beer.  Its more expensive and time intensive than standard ales..

Anyone know the history on this?
If I recall correctly it was due to a few things: the ability to dry malt that was pale in color, the ability to create transparent glassware, and the availability of refrigeration that not only allowed easier production of lagers, but to serve cold beer that was refreshing to the palate.

So a combination of technology improvements and a taste for "a cold one" that looked really pretty in a transparent glass.

lithy

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #68 on: March 06, 2014, 11:25:35 AM »
Not to mention that AB isn't exactly lagering for 4-6 weeks blindly.  Hell, they filter the grain bed instead of traditional 60-90 minute lautering to speed things up.

They brew high gravity, they ferment hotter to speed up primary fermentation, they lager for less time.  Their oldest, most inefficient brewery in Saint Louis turns over the annual production (~3500bbls) of the brewery where I work in 2-3 hours.  They have a 20+ single horizontal lagering tanks with a capacity as big as our annual production.  Then they have a dozen more of these facilities across the country.

Grain to glass is probably under 4 weeks.  Keep in mind also, that almost all of their product is coming from a single wort stream.  Bud Light is the same wort as Bud Select, just less diluted.  Less tank juggling to worry about when you're only making one beer.

As for why they chose lager though.  Probably simply because that's what was popular at the time (late 1800s).  They weren't going to try to blaze a new trail, they were simply going to do what all of the local and regional breweries were doing at the same time, just faster.  The German brewing tradition took hold in the mid to late 1800s, before that English styles were popular, but mostly done as a domestic chore or an outsourced domestic chore (view the pub as a traveler's house first and a bar second).  It wasn't until the time of the Industrial Revolution that beer became something that could be industrialized.


jdoolin

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #69 on: March 06, 2014, 01:42:19 PM »
Everything went very well today.  The mash/lauter tun worked great as I said before and my chilling setup was pretty effective for how much I paid for it.  I have a home made immersion chiller (that I made before the price of copper shot through the roof) and a utility sink that I filled with very cold water.  This combination brought the temperature down from boil to 66 degrees in a half hour.  I was VERY happy with that.

So, primary for a week, secondary for long enough for the isinglass to do it's job then bottle conditioning.  Now I need to order ingredients for the oatmeal stout that I plan to rack onto the yeast cake.

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #70 on: March 06, 2014, 02:41:12 PM »
The more I read the more I think a minimum of 2 weeks in PRIMARY(edited to what I meant) is wise.  Just some food for thought.  I am moving away from 2ndary all together, but will do one for my kolsch this weekend.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2014, 09:47:05 AM by tomq04 »

Wiggle

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #71 on: March 07, 2014, 09:31:31 AM »
In general I am getting away from secondaries.  Lately I've been doing a longer 2 or 3 week primary and then direct to bottle.  I've never had any off taste and if anything the product is just as good or better than the brews I've done with a secondary. 

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #72 on: March 07, 2014, 09:48:22 AM »
Changed my post above to say what I meant, in general 2 weeks in primary, minimum, and totally avoid 2ndary unless you are doing something specific.

grantmeaname

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #73 on: March 07, 2014, 03:01:28 PM »
As I've said in prior versions of this thread, I do brew-in-a-bag all grain and make wine and cider. We've got a cider, a barolo, and a sparkling sauvignon blanc in carboys and a barleywine that just finished carbonating in bottles.

jdoolin

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #74 on: March 07, 2014, 04:18:58 PM »
As I've said in prior versions of this thread, I do brew-in-a-bag all grain and make wine and cider. We've got a cider, a barolo, and a sparkling sauvignon blanc in carboys and a barleywine that just finished carbonating in bottles.
Any tips for getting a barleywine to attenuate?  I've never tried one but I'd like to some day.

grantmeaname

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #75 on: March 07, 2014, 04:26:29 PM »
Nope, ours came out way weak. Still a tasty beer though.

lithy

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #76 on: March 08, 2014, 06:51:28 AM »
You can mash lower, but I guess it depends on what you mean by getting it to attenuate because to me barleywines are sweet beers.  You just have to use a good chunk of hops to bitter it appropriately for balance.

A beer that starts at 1.100 and finishes "high" at 1.020-1.024 is still about 10%ABV.

Yeast health is important in high gravity brewing.  Build a yeast starter, 1L or so and brew a medium strength beer 1.050 or so with the yeast you will use for your barleywine.  Harvest a lot of that yeast and make up a 2L or bigger if possible, starter again and brew your barleywine.  Yeast nutrient would be helpful, for cheap nutrient you can take some spent yeast and throw it into the boil right at flameout.  Proper aeration is essential although most homebrew setups won't allow for using pure oxygen and shaking the wort can't get atmospheric O2 into solution at a rate that yeast likes. 

When I'm back at work I can post a recipe for a black barleywine that we did recently that turned out great, but with 1.100 wort and a ton of hops it isn't a budget friendly beer.

jnik

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #77 on: March 08, 2014, 07:22:37 AM »
I've always wondered why the industry went to lager's as the staple beer.  Its more expensive and time intensive than standard ales..
I suspect one reason (in addition to what everyone has said) is that lagers take better to cheap adjuncts than ales.

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #78 on: March 09, 2014, 09:34:18 PM »
brewed today:

http://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/104773/extract-kolsh

Everything went perfect, hadn't done an extract in ages...it's amazingly easy :)  Hopefully it's still good.  Hoping to figure out how to harvest this yeast and re-use it, looking for any ideas, would have to brew in april ish.

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #79 on: March 10, 2014, 09:06:58 AM »
I've always wondered why the industry went to lager's as the staple beer.  Its more expensive and time intensive than standard ales..
I suspect one reason (in addition to what everyone has said) is that lagers take better to cheap adjuncts than ales.
It's all about increasing consumption.  Light-bodied low-alcohol beers increase sales of both beer and salty high-markup snack foods.  Try sitting on your butt watching a football game and putting away more than 3 pints of heavy ale.  You'd get quite full and pretty drunk.  Meanwhile, the guy at the sports bar has put away 10 Lites and eaten $30 worth of nachos and wings and still feels good enough to drive. 

And yes, the fact that the average light lager trades off a substantial portion of barley in the grain bill for cheaper things like rice and corn is definitely influential. 

markstache

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #80 on: March 10, 2014, 10:22:38 AM »
Those of you that buy malt by the 50lb, do you buy base malts in that large quantities and specialties from the local brewshop?  what about bulk hops?  The last recipe I did had 3 or 4 different hops, I don't think I brew enough to keep 3 or four pounds of hops on hand.

I buy my bags of grain at either Northern Brewer or Midwest Supplies when I'm in Minneapolis or have family coming to visit. In general, try your local shop to get a quote on a bag (might also be able to come back to mill, which could be a benefit over buying a mill) or a local home brewer's group to see if they do group buys. Shipping on bags from the online distributors will be more expensive, but still might be better than per-pound costs.

I've usually just purchased base malt (2-row and wheat), but I think I'll buy some C20 as well in my next purchase.

If you bought a pound each of a classic German, English, and American hops, you'd be in a  good place to brew a pretty wide variety of beers.  This has been my strategy. I've purchased from Nikobrew.com and from this ebay seller to keep my hops prices around $10/lb (shipped).

If you have a brew buddy, you could order a larger variety and split them.

Cromacster

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #81 on: March 10, 2014, 10:32:46 AM »
As I've said in prior versions of this thread, I do brew-in-a-bag all grain and make wine and cider. We've got a cider, a barolo, and a sparkling sauvignon blanc in carboys and a barleywine that just finished carbonating in bottles.
Any tips for getting a barleywine to attenuate?  I've never tried one but I'd like to some day.

two suggestions.  1) Pitch on a yeast cake from a previous brew. 2) Make a big ass yeast starter, probably around 3L.

Pitching on the yeast cake will be your best bet.  For the yeast starter I would make it by doing a double brew...as in brew one batch mix for a day, drain off "beer", add another batched of wort, mix for a day, then add to barleywine wort.

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #82 on: March 12, 2014, 10:37:52 PM »
My kolchs primary fermentation seems to have finally slowed enough for me to put a normal airlock on it, it was going NUTS!  I'll leave it to hang out for 3 weekends (4 weeks in primary) and then i'll have to decide if I want to 2ndary, or just keg and let sit for a couple weeks before adding the co2.

I'm excited!

ohyonghao

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #83 on: March 14, 2014, 03:25:34 PM »
My first attempt at hard cider.  Was worried about the krausen at first, but that happened on the first day of full fermentation.  It's been nearly a week and I switched the airlock once.  Looking forward to finally drinking some of it.

jdoolin

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #84 on: March 21, 2014, 06:59:28 PM »
The Dark Mild has been bottle conditioning for a week, so I plan on testing one tomorrow.

Then Sunday I embark upon a new homebrewing journey:  the quest to clone Orval.    I'm calling my recipe "Mathilda" after the legend that Princess Mathilda lost her ring in the spring near the current Orval abbey and had it returned by a trout (the current Orval logo).

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #85 on: March 25, 2014, 02:25:38 PM »
I'm kegging and brewing april 11, a full 5 weeks after starting the kolsch, home brew store guy said not to worry.  Reusing the yeast cake in a hybrid German Steam Altbier, until then my CPA studies await, test on April 8.

CommonCents

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #86 on: March 25, 2014, 02:34:30 PM »
We're looking to get into homebrewing.  What would you recommended for equipment in the beginning?  Any particular online (or MA/NH) store you'd recommend?

DH's bday is in June so I thought I might get him something beer making related as a present.

skunkfunk

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #87 on: March 25, 2014, 02:52:06 PM »
We're looking to get into homebrewing.  What would you recommended for equipment in the beginning?  Any particular online (or MA/NH) store you'd recommend?

DH's bday is in June so I thought I might get him something beer making related as a present.

You need a fermenter, a 5 gallon pot, and a siphon at minimum.

I bought a starter kit from austin homebrew, but it did not come with a pot. Polar ware 20 qt pot is pretty reasonably priced, and I don't recommend an aluminum kettle.

jnik

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #88 on: March 26, 2014, 08:34:10 AM »
Any particular online (or MA/NH) store you'd recommend?
Austin, Williams, or Midwest online. Modern Brewer in North Cambridge for B&M.

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #89 on: March 26, 2014, 10:59:19 AM »
Any particular online (or MA/NH) store you'd recommend?
Austin, Williams, or Midwest online. Modern Brewer in North Cambridge for B&M.

Second Modern Brewer (now called Modern Homebrew Emporium). Great resource for advice/help, and worth a visit.

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #90 on: March 26, 2014, 11:05:02 AM »
We're looking to get into homebrewing.  What would you recommended for equipment in the beginning?  Any particular online (or MA/NH) store you'd recommend?

DH's bday is in June so I thought I might get him something beer making related as a present.

You need a fermenter, a 5 gallon pot, and a siphon at minimum.

I bought a starter kit from austin homebrew, but it did not come with a pot. Polar ware 20 qt pot is pretty reasonably priced, and I don't recommend an aluminum kettle.

Hmm, I disagree with the aluminum.  Cheap, quick to heat, no off-flavor.  I use this pot for brew in a bag:
http://www.walmart.com/ip/IMUSA-Tamale-and-Seafood-32-Quart-Steamer/13370045

I say start with 7-8 gallon pot at least so you can expand in the future if you want (doing 5 gallon boils, large mashes, etc). 

@CommonCents
As far as starter equipment, I use all of this stuff (except for bottling related items because I keg) regularly today:
http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/essential-brewing-starter-kit.html

I prefer to use these 6.5 gallon buckets vs carboys because they're easy to clean (so long as you don't scratch them, they will host infections), lighter, bigger, cheaper to replace, easier to move, easier to reuse yeast, blah blah blah. I always primary ferment in these guys.  Plus that auto-siphon is top quality.

Cheers!

skunkfunk

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #91 on: March 26, 2014, 12:05:50 PM »
We're looking to get into homebrewing.  What would you recommended for equipment in the beginning?  Any particular online (or MA/NH) store you'd recommend?

DH's bday is in June so I thought I might get him something beer making related as a present.

You need a fermenter, a 5 gallon pot, and a siphon at minimum.

I bought a starter kit from austin homebrew, but it did not come with a pot. Polar ware 20 qt pot is pretty reasonably priced, and I don't recommend an aluminum kettle.

Hmm, I disagree with the aluminum.  Cheap, quick to heat, no off-flavor.  I use this pot for brew in a bag:
http://www.walmart.com/ip/IMUSA-Tamale-and-Seafood-32-Quart-Steamer/13370045

I say start with 7-8 gallon pot at least so you can expand in the future if you want (doing 5 gallon boils, large mashes, etc). 

@CommonCents
As far as starter equipment, I use all of this stuff (except for bottling related items because I keg) regularly today:
http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/essential-brewing-starter-kit.html

I prefer to use these 6.5 gallon buckets vs carboys because they're easy to clean (so long as you don't scratch them, they will host infections), lighter, bigger, cheaper to replace, easier to move, easier to reuse yeast, blah blah blah. I always primary ferment in these guys.  Plus that auto-siphon is top quality.

Cheers!

I second the bucket. I've got a heavy glass carboy, and it's horrible compared to my bucket.

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #92 on: March 28, 2014, 07:17:37 AM »
I had a curious happening that I had never seen before, and unfortunately never took a pictures.

My carboy had a ton of white streaking down the sides, then today, it was gone.  My father (parents just showed up for the weekend) admittedly moved the carboy across the room by slowly "wiggling" it so he likely stirred something up, but not sure how that would make it completely go away.  Any ideas what it was?  The beer has been in there since March 8, so 3 full weeks this Saturday, plenty of time to have  been done fermenting, but I haven't checked that yet, planning on letting it sit another week before kegging.

CommonCents

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #93 on: March 28, 2014, 08:55:41 AM »
Interesting.  Thanks for the tips!  Hopefully DH's grad school experience in sterilizing equipment will come into handy for home brewing.  :)

skunkfunk

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #94 on: March 28, 2014, 09:03:33 AM »
Interesting.  Thanks for the tips!  Hopefully DH's grad school experience in sterilizing equipment will come into handy for home brewing.  :)

Sterilization is probably overkill! The yeast are hardy enough to overcome some small level of contamination.

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #95 on: March 30, 2014, 09:20:43 PM »
Interesting.  Thanks for the tips!  Hopefully DH's grad school experience in sterilizing equipment will come into handy for home brewing.  :)

DH started us on the homebrew adventures, and was meticulous with the sterilization.  I am much lazier, and just swish my carboys with white vinegar, and boil the caps in water for bottling.  FWIW, my brew results have been > his.  Once I learned that off flavors are about the worst that will happen with haphazard sanitation, I didn't worry too much, and although I keep things clean, not worrying about sterility has kept the homebrew process simple, cheap and enjoyable.

CommonCents

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #96 on: March 31, 2014, 07:54:09 AM »
Interesting.  Thanks for the tips!  Hopefully DH's grad school experience in sterilizing equipment will come into handy for home brewing.  :)

DH started us on the homebrew adventures, and was meticulous with the sterilization.  I am much lazier, and just swish my carboys with white vinegar, and boil the caps in water for bottling.  FWIW, my brew results have been > his.  Once I learned that off flavors are about the worst that will happen with haphazard sanitation, I didn't worry too much, and although I keep things clean, not worrying about sterility has kept the homebrew process simple, cheap and enjoyable.

Shhhhhh....
He doesn't do the dishes too often at home, darned if I'm going to give a green light to a hobby for him, where he also doesn't do the work of cleaning up and I end up having to do it...

tomq04

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #97 on: April 01, 2014, 08:16:37 AM »
I found an ounce of hallertauer hops from 2 years ago, properly stored in the freezer, when I was going to do a kolsch batch.  I just did a kolsch batch (i've been mentioning the past month), would dry hopping with those old nastys be ok?  Or is anything good left in them pretty well gone?

lithy

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #98 on: April 01, 2014, 09:04:55 AM »
Really depends on what you mean by 'properly stored'.

Were they vacuum sealed in an impermeable foil bag that was flushed with nitrogen?  If so, they should be fine. 

If they were just in the freezer in a ziplock, they probably aren't.

Can't hurt to open them up and give them a good smell either way.  Stale hops will smell of isovaleric acid, more specifically they might smell like sweaty socks or aged hard cheeses.  You don't really want this in your beer, but if they smell good, they'll taste good.

grantmeaname

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Re: Home Brew discussion
« Reply #99 on: April 01, 2014, 12:27:44 PM »
Why would you dry hop a kolsch?