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Everything posted by gophers6

  1. I have a group of 5 beer drinking friends I invite over when I have a new brew ready. Last time I waited till I had 2 ready, standard wheat + honey and BRA + Mellow Amber UME. I served Wheat Thins with the wheat beer and chocolate peanut clusters my wife makes with the Red. I printed up fact sheets similar to what's on MR.Beer recipe pages showing ingredients, how they contribute to ABV etc. Had lots of fun with it. (my friends probably think I should be committed)
  2. LloydBraun wrote: Thanks everyone!.....I've only been brewing about a month. This message board is very helpful. Lloyd Braun, I don't think you're crazy for asking these question! I've always wondered what's so sacred about 4 cups of water. What's the difference if it's 3 1/2 or 4 1/2 cups?
  3. Any idea why the muslin grain sack is $.45 at Midwest Supplies and $4.75 at morebeer? I must be missing something.
  4. Do I need to sanitize the grain sack or will the hot water take care or it?
  5. gdt12 wrote: mcgrewc wrote: I use some form of crystal malt in most everything I brew now. Love ths stuff. Same here. . . that is, if I'm not doing all-grain already. Steeping grains seems to add to all of the Mr. Beer recipes. I just buy a lighter crystal malt--say a 10 to 20 and then use a quarter to half a pound for a Mr. Beer sized batch. The lightest one they show at Midwest Supplies is 50-60. Will that affect the flavor?
  6. I'm after better head retention and foam stability which steeping grains is supposed to provide. I noticed the label on the mellow amber UME says lots of crystal malt. Does that provide more foam or is it just when crystal is steeped? The reason I ask is my BRA + MA was extremely fizzy.
  7. I'd like to move up to steeping grains. I'm looking at midwest supplies.com. (They have $.45 grain bags.) They show Briess carapils(dextrin malt) and Simpson crystal 50-60L. 1. Which one would be better for many different types of beer since I only want to order one kind? 2. How much would I use for a 2 gallon batch? 3. After 30 minute steep I will take out the grain sack. Can I then bring that same water to a boil and add HME etc, or do I not boil the water that was steeped in? Thanks in advance.
  8. mxstar21 wrote: I love English Men's Nut brown Ale + Creamy Brown UME + brown sugar + honey. I also have a pineapple beer that turns out pretty good every time I make it. Shilegeah Stout is also real good. How much BS & honey? Seems like a lot of sugar.
  9. Sometimes I think you Southerners have an advantage where you run AC 24/7. I live in Minnesota and have decided to quit until winter. It's 78 in the house and basement too. I can't justify running the AC just for the beer. Gonna have serious holes in the pipline late fall & early winter.
  10. The fizz overwhelms the flavor so much it's hard to describe the flavor.
  11. After 4 successful batches of standard refills, for my 5th batch I made Bew. Red Ale + MA UME. I used the 3-2-4 time period. Last nite I poured some in a glass and also poured a bottle of Killian's in a glass and compared them. Hate to say it but I lost big time! Mine is extremely fizzy, like beer flavored Alka Seltzer. I carbed the same as always, 2.5 tsp sugar/liter. Any thoughts about what went wrong would be appreciated. It was hot here, 78 in the house during ferment and carb.
  12. What's the highest temp you would condition at? I have nowhere in the house below 73 so I go straight to the fridge.
  13. Of the 5 batches I've made, the only one with good head retention has been the standard wheat refill that I added 2/3 cup of honey to. Did the honey help the head or is this coincidence?
  14. Thanks guys for the good info! Too bad there's not a home brew store within 100 miles of me. Shipping adds up.
  15. MC, unfamiliar terminology to a novice. How do you steep it and when do you add it?
  16. I've read on this board that the temp in the keg goes up significantly during the first few days of fermenting. So should we be putting it somewhere where the temp is 65 or so and then moving it to a place where its around 70 after a few days?
  17. SiriusDG wrote: Okay, up until now, I have been generally a believer in the theory that CO2 is created in the liquid, and finds it's way into the headspace, and the pressure between the two naturally equalizes, so when the bottle gets hard, carbing is complete. My entire sense of the universe just shifted, thanx to serendipity. Do this experiment for yourself. Buy a soda, in a plastic bottle. Drink 4 or 5 good swallows. Now screw the cap back on. Feel the bottle...nice and squishy, right? Now shake that sucker up. Feel the bottle now. Rock hard. Hmmm. The volume of what was in the bottle did not change...meaning, there is no yeast in there CREATING CO2 that did not exist before, like when we carb. I did not change the volume of the bottle. I did not change the temperature. But the pressure, ergo the "Feels Hard", of the bottle changed dramatically. And the kicker is, my soda has one helluva lot LESS carb now than it did a minute ago. And while I have not tested this part scientifically yet, what I think I generally know about soda tells me that the carb that just left my soda will never come back, no matter how long I let it sit. I am not really sure where this leaves me except with a nagging sense that something is not the way I thought it was, and that the feel of a plastic bottle is not necessarily a good indicator of the level of carbonation of the fluid inside. Generally speaking, all other things being equal, yes, but it seems the correlation can be easily broken, and therefore is not very reliable. Anyone care to chime in on this? Sirus, I bottled my Octoberfest Monday in plastic soda pop bottles. The last bottle got only 1/2 filled. That one is already rock hard while the others are still soft. Does this tell us anything? Maybe air space carbs faster or easier? Any theories? David
  18. I sanitize the bottles with one step. Instead of dumping them out I dump them into a large pitcher. After bottling I clean the keg with a drop of anti microbial hand soap and a soft cloth. Then I pour the used one step from the pitcher into the keg and slosh around. Been working good. I know a lot of the guys here use Oxy Clean but I'm leery of the health effects of using a laundry stain remover. Maybe I'm paranoid.
  19. Sham Addams wrote: norman1 wrote: SiriusDG wrote: I would expect that to be done by now. How many bubbles? 1/2 inch thick layer? More or less? Here is where a hydrometer really comes in handy. How does it taste? How does it look in the taste glass...is it actively fizzing, or very flat? David Bubbles are 1/2 inch diameter, covering about 2/3 of the surface. Taste test is flat, not fizzy or sweet. Never had bubbles last this long before. I agree it time to bottle your Mr Bubble. BTW what is the barometer doing in norman1 land? 30.00 and rising. Jeez, got enough to think about without taking the barometer into consideration. Bottled this morning. The last bottle looked like a chocolate milk shake.
  20. I asked the brewmaster by phone a few months ago about adding honey to the standard wheat refill. She said to use 2/3 cup honey and only use 1/2 pouch of booster. Turned out a little thin, but very tasty.
  21. SiriusDG wrote: I would expect that to be done by now. How many bubbles? 1/2 inch thick layer? More or less? Here is where a hydrometer really comes in handy. How does it taste? How does it look in the taste glass...is it actively fizzing, or very flat? David Bubbles are 1/2 inch diameter, covering about 2/3 of the surface. Taste test is flat, not fizzy or sweet. Never had bubbles last this long before.
  22. Tomorrow will be 3 weeks for my VL + UME + honey fermenting at 72-75 and there is still a lot of bubbles on top. Why is it taking so long?You'd think it would go faster at higher temps. Should I wait for the bubbles to go away?
  23. Augsburg Dark Snow Drift Jamaican Mon Extra Fermenter Never made recipes before, just refills. I'm psyched.
  24. ericg wrote: Yep, boil 'em with the UME. If you're not using UME, boil 'em in Booster. I just got my first recipe with hops today. The instructions say boil water, then remove from heat and add HME, UME, and hops in hopsack and pour into keg. Eric, are you saying you disagree with instructions or am I not getting something? Thanks.
  25. Sham Addams wrote: norman1 wrote: Maybe someone can help a relative newcomer who's never made a recipe before, just refills. I'm debating between 2 dark recipes: Snow Drift= HCCD + Creamy Brown, or Monkeys Dunkel= VL + Creamy Brown. Suggestions please. They would both be dark and malty. If you like dark and not very hoppy they would be good choices. If so, welcome to the dark side. If not choose other ume's. Either way welcome to the brewing family. Thanks. Why do they call them "Balanced" instead of "malty or hoppy?"
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