Jump to content
Mr.Beer Community

Leaderboard


Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 09/18/2018 in Posts

  1. 9 points
    MRB Tim

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    Man this is such a wholesome thread. Just wanted to add my $0.02 on the twang issue. I don't think we've ever disputed that liquid extracts can tend to have a twang. Every method of brewing has its pros and cons, none is the "right" way to brew. The advantages of HME are that it's great for beginners to learn on, doesn't take much time, space, or equipment, and I think the smaller batch size is an advantage to a lot of brewers. The disadvantages, as I see them, are less control over some factors, darker color, and occasional twang. To my palette, some refills have more twang than others. I get more of it with Diablo than Long play, and more with Blonde than Weissbier. So, that's one factor to consider. Another is that doing a grain steep or hop boil can reduce it pretty drastically. I find that more important than temp or sanitation, in terms of the twang aspect. I would also just add that I've brewed hundreds of HME batches by now, and only had a few batches where twang was strong and unpleasant enough to impact my enjoyment of the beer. Given our policy of replacing bad batches and, I think, our flexibility, I find that to be a pretty low-risk proposition.
  2. 8 points
    Bonsai & Brew

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    I can't believe 3 pages into this discussion and no one has posted this yet! Thanks for the memories @AnthonyC.
  3. 7 points
    Creeps McLane

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    Then let me add one last thing. You may be the best brewer in the world. You just don’t know it yet. Like @Gutterbunnie said (that should win the day everyday) is you just have to find what works for you. People talk about the high drop out rate on here all the time. For a Brewer who is doing everything right but your beer doesn’t taste like how you want it, that can be frustrating. Very frustrating. But you can’t give up. Ive made enough HME batches to learn I don’t prefer HME. I’ve brewed with enough LME to find that it wasn’t for me. I’m a freak for control and this isn’t a hobby that I’m ok with not putting the time into what I enjoy sitting down and enjoying on a daily basis. That’s me. I’ve had plenty of HME beers that @Bonsai & Brew sent me that blew me away. He’s f***ing good at working with what he has. I don’t have that. So I moved on. All I really wanted to say was this; don’t sell yourself short. Keep pushing. If something isn’t working, try something else. Look at @Nickfixit. He’s constantly tweaking and striving for the perfect balance in his beers. Don’t let one ingredient stop you from perfecting your beers. If you want to take the next step, ask questions. Be open to new ideas. This forum is filled with intelligent people who have been a newbie before. Partial mashes, hoppy beers, drying out your HMEs are a great start. But for me, the best thing I can say is to look at where you want to be in a year or five and start reaching for that level. Don’t sell yourself short! DONT SELL YOURSELF SHORT! Lastly, for years I’ve tried to stay relevant on this forum. I don’t really use HME anymore but I stay here to try to help others with my opinions though they very well may be wrong. Ask me anything and I’ll try to help. Freaking @kedogn is a professional Brewer, ask him. Sometimes a vet like @Screwy Brewer and @bpgreen will be on here. Listen to what they say. They’re amazing. This is what a forum is all about. this was supposed to be a quick post, I’m sorry. I was raised in a house full of women so I get emotional quickly, but God damn it I’m here for you.
  4. 6 points
    Nickfixit

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    Aaaagh! Yes indeed. Tweak does not always improve. I am probably less scientific too than it reads - lol - certainly I am less picky about my process too than many here (not a control freak 😄) .. But overall I am up to 215 brews now. I do get some with funny flavors still. I very rarely get any that are undrinkable. Differing from Creeps, I prefer the ease of using HME, and I find the beers drinkable and my friends do too, so that is good enough. Also SWMBO hates brewing smells so prolonged boiling etc. is not tenable. But I like the ease, starting or finishing 1 LBK brew in about an hour including cleanup. (maybe more for PM) Today I bottled Oktoberfest enhanced with PM (2 oz each Munich, Vienna and Biscuit grain ) and strengthened by 2 packs of booster and flavored more with 0.5 oz Hallertauer hop at flameout in a bag. This tasted good with no off flavors. It was fermented in ambient low-mid 60's using Mr. Beer yeast. Why booster? #1 I have a bunch of it, #2, I do not like too malty as I also do not like too hoppy. I also have been messing around with beers so much I though I should try tasting more of the Mr Beer intent. I think it will be fine, having a sweetish start and a balanced finish where you can taste hops. Targeted at Halloween/Thanksgiving timeframe. The only place I am picky on is sterilization using Mr Beer sanitizer or Onestep. Having a basement room at 63-65 deg also helps. I actually have to warm some brews up in a different room if I want 70+. (Wheat or Saison) I use directional lamps with spot light bulbs as heaters - 2 for 80 deg, one for 70-72 deg. I do not use temp controller I just use a thermometer on the LBK and move lamps closer or further away to get desired temp. It seems close enough. For 80 I have to partly wrap the LBK in towels though. When people ask me about the long process of brewing, I tell them I do it the easy way. If you think warm temperature is your problem - cool the LBK ( I use Coleman cooler chest and ice packs) or ferment a beer that likes warmth e.g. Saison. For cheap temperature monitoring I use a $10 digital aquarium thermometer taped on the LBK side with paper towel insulation over the thermometer and under the tape. If you have a cooler with a drain hole, you can run the wire through that and see temp without opening the cooler. If you are concerned about temperature fluctuation, putting the LBK in a container will help even it out - even a cardboard box but cooler is best. Early on I used a $2 foam one (you can still run the thermometer wire out if you make a little groove where the lid fits) and that worked too,. But keep at it - try cooling the LBK in a cheap cooler with freezer ice packs of frozen water bottles (2/3 full only) first.
  5. 6 points
    Gutterbunnie

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    Yeah, I can echo what others have said. Just don't give up. I just brewed up my 20th LBK batch last night, the Dead & Berried Mr Beer recipe. But i added a few things, and I substituted Safale BE134 for the Belle Saison (undecided if I'm a fan of that yeast). Really I believe it boils down to a matter or personal preference/tastes. I tried Safale US-05 on several batches: HME, partial mash, DME, LME & even all grain BIAB. Honestly, I don't like US-05 very much at all. There's some weird cabbage off flavor in my finished beer that I just can't quite describe. And I believe it's possibly my taste buds & olfactory senses, since so many others rave about it & I just don't care for it. So anyway. I've found that that I prefer 04 or even Nottingham. I've tried a few WLP (1272 is pretty good) and WYEAST (American wheat) which aren't bad at all. And I enjoy the WB-06 Wheat yeast (after cold conditioning a Bavarian Hefe a few months, awesome!). I would say this hobby is just as much about experimentation. And since it's 2 gallon batches, it's much easier to go that route & be OK with some not-so-great batches. Trial & error. Sure, I've had a few botched batches here & there (that I'm still drinking by the way) but overall I've had a lot more successes. Whether that's a Mr Beer HME/partial mash, an all extract using DME or LME, or an all grain BIAB. Find what you enjoy & keep doing it until you get it right the way you like it! Read up, borrow some homebrewing books from your local library such as from Papazzian, who if I can remember his quote, basically says you really have to work to screw up a home brew! Enjoy the process, take good notes, pay attention. But most of all, have fun. It's a hobby! Cheers
  6. 5 points
    Jdub

    Upcoming Brewing Schedule

    one problem with home brewing is there are so damn many recipes out there, and I wanna brew them all!
  7. 4 points
    I am currently thinking things over for a MUG Midwest meeting, similar to the one we had this year in Munster IN. Here are some thoughts: - Naturally, even though it's "Midwest", anyone/everyone is invited. - If we get a date and location set up early, more people can participate, including those from more distant locations. - I'm thinking it should be held in April, like last year. Most of the snow should be gone from this area by then (although it did snow on us on the day we departed this year) - We could bring our own beers, but unless we have someone who is BJCP or has similar qualifications, I'm not sure about making it a competition. Some locations I'm considering are: - Munster, home of 3 Floyds - Columbus, specifically https://www.brewdog.com/usa/doghouse - Cincinnati. Lots of great breweries there, as well as in Northern Kentucky (specifically Braxton) - Indianapolis. - Louisville. Yes, my home, but I know it well and know the best breweries. I'm open to other location suggestions. Also, I know that Louisville has a company that can take us by van to various breweries, so that we don't have to drink and drive. I'm sure other communities have them as well, or we can hire an Uber van or some other company to truck us around. Please feel free to post suggestions/comments here, or to me by personal message.
  8. 4 points
    Shrike

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    Those are a lot of reasons why I stick with HME. I like doing two gallon batches; five gallons is just too much to work with, bottle, etc. Plus, if I'm not too fond of the final product, I'd rather have two gallons to slog through than five. The darker color doesn't bother me. If it tastes good I'm happy. And as I posted earlier, doing PMs and hop additions can cancel the twang pretty handily. When I had family visit earlier this year they preferred some of the MRB brews we sampled to some of the craft beers we had while eating out. That was a nice little ego boost. And to me, this is a fun hobby. I spend a couple of hours every ten days or so bottling and brewing, and I get tasty beer as a result. When I look at a setup like @Creeps McLane has posted photos of I think "Man, that looks so cool...but it also looks like work." It's what he enjoys doing, but it's not for me; I don't want my fun hobby to become a chore.
  9. 4 points
    MRB Tim

    MUG Nationals

    As of right now, we're lining up the details to still have the competition. So, it's tentatively still on. I'll make an effort to get an informational thread back up today.
  10. 4 points
    Its very hard for me to sit here and be quiet. Its an HME thing. Honestly, since ive gone all grain i had to relearn what i knew. I can go 5 degrees higher with your same yeasts with no notice of off flavors. Thats the difference of needing a fermentation chamber or not for me. Thats huge. Im not saying you cant hide that flavor youre getting. It just takes more effort. I may expess this too much on an HME forum, and i hope i dont sound like im bragging cuz i can do AG but to me the beers ive brewed have been more than enough of proof.
  11. 3 points
    kedogn

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    My only thoughts on that are: I get the control part. It’s why I went AG. I’ve said many times that when I brewed my first AG batch all I could think was “If this sucks, it’s *all* on me!” Luckily that first recipe went on to be the 1st award-winning beer from Manfish. Second, if your plan is to take this away from being a “Neat Little Hobby” and to the professional level, just remember what I still struggle with, and that is “You’re tastebuds really don’t mean sh*t!” There are a few, literally like 3, Manfish beers that I am personally not sold on. Yet, well, people drink them and those kegs sell and fast. It’s a double edged sword really.
  12. 3 points
    kedogn

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    As cheesy or corny as it sounds, I’ve always felt that where ever you are is where you should be and that is the right way to brew. I remember catching so much crap for doing Mr. Beer, yet I was right where I needed to be and that was, at that time, the right way to brew. I am not one of those who have so much talent they can do anything. I am one of those kinds where I have to bang my head against the big green wall over and over and over again before It sticks. Bottom line is every little step in Brewing has different things for different people and when you are there... it’s the ‘right’ way to brew, in my “been there done that” opinion.
  13. 3 points
    Shrike

    Double back diamond conditioning

    I'd go two months, then put one in the fridge. Drink it three days later. If it's to your liking, throw a couple more in the fridge to enjoy. But for ones you don't plan on drinking right away, don't put them in the fridge. Leave them to condition at room temperature; they'll improve as they age.
  14. 3 points
    Bonsai & Brew

    Upcoming Brewing Schedule

    Maybe some dampfbier.
  15. 3 points
    kedogn

    Fermentation temp control

    I’ve learned a ton by reading his stuff here, on FB and his web site. @Screwy Brewer‘s page about Water Chemistry changed my brews for the far better! I was also very lucky to get the chance to meet him and have a couple beers together several years ago when he was in Seattle. I know I have that pic somewhere... 🍺
  16. 3 points
    Jdub

    Upcoming Brewing Schedule

    i used WLP001 california ale yeast on my last porter batch. i also picked up some more omega hothead for my next pale ale coming up. i really like the varieties of stuff you can make beer with.
  17. 3 points
    Joe G

    Newbie needs brew plan confirmation

    I just realized that, after all of your amazing help, I never posted my results! The Oktoberfest beer came out absolutely amazing! Way better than I was expecting for my first batch, and I owe much of it to all of your advice. I sanitized the spigot after testing, cold crashed, only chilled what I was going to drink, and each bottle was better than the next. Had a few friends try it and they loved it as well. Best compliment I got was from one friend, who said if he tried it in a restaurant he would order it again! Just bottled my Classic American Light (it came with the Oktoberfest in the kit), and the taste sample had more beer flavor than any typical light beer on the market. Looking forward to this one being ready, and trying to decide which one to do next. Yep - I'm hooked! Many thanks again to all of you.
  18. 3 points
    Screwy Brewer

    Fermentation temp control

    You'll find out as you go along that temperature control has everything to do with brewing beer. Especially when pitching yeast and throughout fermentation.
  19. 2 points
    Jdub

    Partial Mash Mixup

    many great things were invented by mistake!
  20. 2 points
    Shrike

    Partial Mash Mixup

    It'll be ever so slightly sweeter and a smidge darker than it would have been if brewed normally. You'll get maybe a 0.1-0.2% ABV boost, depending on how efficient the mash was. Like @Jdub says, it should be tasty. If it turns out to your liking you can try brewing it again as per the recipe just to see the differences.
  21. 2 points
    Shrike

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    Creeps, speaking for myself, you have no need to hesitate about speaking your mind; your reputation on this forum is solid as can be. I too think that the HME is the source of the twang. But I also think that the partial mash recipes - either from the added grain, the hops, or both - work well in minimizing it. Some of the PM IPAs I've brewed have had no trace of twang, and neither have the PM stouts. The Crafty Bitch brews I make with the CAL have a total of 6oz of grains and 1.5oz of hops added...and no twang to be found. And more bitter and hoppy HMEs also have less, at least for me. I brewed Long Play IPA + 4oz carapils and it had no twang. When I did the same with an HME like American Ale? Twang.
  22. 2 points
    Cato

    Conditioning/Cider flavor

    Well said, Gutterbunnie! Each of those different brewing methods have their own set of challenges, which makes it fun to try and make your best beer you can and how you'll do it better next time.
  23. 2 points
    Cato

    Fermentation temp control

    I use @Screwy Brewer's EZ BIAB online all the time, as well as some of the other calculators. It's a huge help to me.
  24. 2 points
    D Kristof

    Fermentation temp control

    @Screwy Brewer, it's reassuring to know old hands like you still visit this forum. Enjoy reading your advice.
  25. 2 points
    Creeps McLane

    Upcoming Brewing Schedule

    This made me laugh
×