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Brian N.

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Everything posted by Brian N.

  1. Brian N.

    Miller Lite

    Two sides to every story (perhaps three or four). If someone likes a particular beer, so let it be. Brewing MB recipes may be a learning process in two ways. First, learning to brew. Secondly, a sophistication of the taste buds and learning to appreciate more flavorful styles of beer. RickBeer is correct, AB InBev may control much of the market, but hey I like some of those beers anyway. I've grown since my college days drinking Rolling Rock, but still drink a couple every now and then. BTW -just thought that I would add that I graduated college in 1979 - long before Rolling Rock was bought out.
  2. Brian N.

    Leaking Spigot

    The "leak" has been discussed several times, in different threads. The solution appears to be a light sanding of any burr on the LBK, and re-seat the gasket (correctly oriented) hand tight. Just my experience, but once I got the spigot correctly seated and tightened, I have not touched it again (correct - I do not disassemble it to clean). A complete sanitation of the whole LBK with the spigot in place works for me. YMMV.
  3. Brian N.

    Partial Mash

    I believe that some of the extract "Twang" and off flavors has to do with the fermenting temperature (often too high) and short conditioning time. Lately, all my beers are extract with a little extra malt and perhaps hops added, and they have been very good. Perhaps my taste buds are not so refined.
  4. Brian N.

    Bottle priming with Corn Sugar

    Like this stout in the Sam Adams glass. Straight up MB stout, with about 1/2 the recommended amount of sugar. Fermented at 64 deg F for 24 days, then conditioned about 6 months.
  5. Brian N.

    Shaken LBK?

    The trub will settle out. If not, you could cold crash, which many of us do anyway.
  6. Brian N.

    Maple Syrup as Adjunct?

    I would guess that ounce for ounce you can calculate it as an equal weight to sugar. Don't expect a lot of maple flavor (if any at all).
  7. Brian N.

    What does extra yeast do?

    Dry yeast pitched into a cool wort (70 deg F) have a fair chance of surviving. One sachet, about 2 grams of dry yeast, the number of live cells will quickly become sufficient to start active fermentation in a day or two for a small batch (2-5 gallons). Adding more yeast will not necessarily speed things up (lag time). The yeast need time to hydrate, and start metabolizing sugars, then they reproduce. You can find values on-line, I think the Screwy Brewer has it on his web site.
  8. Brian N.

    Cigars and Craft Beer

    Once every few weeks I'll enjoy a cigar (mostly mild) with Scotch (all kinds). I may have a beer with a cigar once every few months. The wife likes a few puffs too, and usually drinks red wine of some type. We always stay outside, as the odor lingers too long in the house. The best was last year when my wife and I soaked in a hot tub with drinks and cigars - can't relax more than that!
  9. Brian N.

    newbie here

    Welcome. Read all the advice under RicklBeer about brewing. Take your time, be patient. I use a large rectangular plastic container from Home Depot for sanitizing. It can hold 4 liter size bottles. I submerge them, shake and rinse a few times, then let them soak a few minutes. As for sanitizing on brewing day, soak everything a few minutes. I first wash the LBK with liquid dish soap, rinse in warm water, then fill with sanitizer, shake, let it sit, shake some more. I do this before the brew, and after fermentation. I sanitize the sink with a hot water and soap, and wipe the handles and faucet with an Oxyclean type spray cleaner. The stove, range hood and back splash get a wipe. All counter tops, cabinets and knobs the same. Sounds excessive, but I've never had an infected beer. NEVER use a kitchen sponge. Use lots of paper towel. Good luck.
  10. Brian N.

    Bottling/Conditioning in Growlers

    Always great to want to share your beers - Your friends and relatives will never leave! However, get the process down first. Growlers and flip tops for carbonation and conditioning are not a great idea, as per Rickbeer's post. Plastic is always easy and reliable.
  11. Brian N.

    Capping/bottling mishap

    I think that some glass bottles may develop micro cracks, fractures and even a deep scratch that can lead to failure. Working with laboratory glassware, we trash any scored glassware, as they WILL fail at some point. Lately, I've gone back to plastic.
  12. Brian N.

    CAL - new and improved?

    Don't forget - flame out when you add the HME. Try a more conventional hop addition by boiling with your DME. Mr. Beer Smooth DME would be a good choice along with US Goldings hops. I think you still want to keep it "lighter" and not turn a the CAL into a something it is not meant to be.
  13. Brian N.

    Backstory on my brewing experience

    I tasted a good many home brews for years, some very good and others not so. Always looked like too much work and waiting. But after 25 years of marriage, my wife ran out of unique gifts, until MB. Small batches easy process and an hour in the kitchen so I gave it a try. My first beer was not great but there was hope and the support of this forum.
  14. Brian N.

    Double back diamond conditioning

    I tend to condition my beers a long time (sometimes because I forget they are there or I just don't get to them). Three months or more is not unusual. However, I agree with Shrike, two months for this one and let some sit longer until you are ready to drink them.
  15. Brian N.

    New to brewing

    Welcome to the forum. Lots of good advice has already been put forth. Remember, it's a hobby, a good one, that can take you as far as you want, or just as simple as you want, and the end result is - you made beer. Enjoy the process; enjoy the product!
  16. Brian N.

    Going With Less Sugar

    I've gone from plastic to glass and now back to plastic. My one experience with a bottle bomb was enough. I still have lots of glass empty bottles, in case I try glass again.
  17. Brian N.

    Newbie Using Secondhand Kit

    As Nick said, use the entire can, the NW Pale Ale will finish just fine, perhaps even better. We will assume that the can of extract is fairly new, if over a couple of years toss it and buy new. Same with the yeast. Good luck and don't forget to sanitize everything.
  18. Brian N.

    Shiner Farmhouse Rye Clone

    Not mad scientist at all. You have a good handle on the qualities of each ingredient and expected results. Actually that is good science and brewing.
  19. Brian N.

    Going With Less Sugar

    Screwybrewer's priming calculator is my "go-to"
  20. Brian N.

    Going With Less Sugar

    I find the MB recommended amount of sugar produces too much carbonation. 3/4 will give you more than enough carbonation. For darker, more malty beers I use even less, as a matter of personal taste. But you already know, the entire hobby is about learning to make beers that you like, not just a recipe.
  21. Brian N.

    Forgotten Batch

    How long has it been overdue? I've had batches in the LBK for 4 weeks without any problem.
  22. Brian N.

    A lesson in patience...

    I'm drinking something very dark right now, as it hid in my basement for a very long while (most likely Irish stout). Probably over a year old and closer to 2 years. Super tasty! Mellow, rich, coffee undertones, not sweet but great malt flavor. Truthfully, I forgot the exact recipe I used, but it has certainly aged well.
  23. Brian N.

    New guy

    Tim - a question for you. How long do the "Big Name" brewers let their "typical" middle of the road (so to speak) ales ferment for? This might be an impossible question to answer, but any guess? My feeling is that is less than 20 days, and closer to 14.
  24. Brian N.

    New guy

    Also - don't go crazy Mad Scientist. Keep it simple for your first few brews. Welcome aboard.
  25. I like to brew at about 66 deg F too. Nice clean fermentation. Just keep them there the full three weeks. There are a few styles of beer where you want a slightly higher temperature, but most MB recipes do fine mid sixty.