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About FedoraDave

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    Master of Brews

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  1. I would recommend you click on the Advanced Recipes link on the Mr. Beer homepage. From there you can choose from Balanced Recipes, Hoppy Recipes, Malty Recipes and Fruity Recipes. Start with the Balanced Recipes and click on whatever intrigues you. You can read descriptions of the beer and see what the ingredients are. Eventually you'll get to notice patterns in the HMEs and LMEs used, and get a sense of hop additions and such. If you choose a lager, make sure that you can control the temperature during fermentation. Lagers need to stay in a temperature range in the high 50s for best results. Brew them according to the directions, and don't make any changes or additions. These recipes are formulated to make good beer just as they are, and the important thing for you at this point is to get the process down and familiarize yourself with the flavor profiles of the various extracts. Good luck!
  2. Nice set-up. It's great to have things organized the way you want them. It makes everything so much easier. I have a similar (albeit larger) set-up in my basement, and I love it!
  3. "Btech117" post=389633 said:@ joe and the grandson comment HAHAHAHAHA No not submitting for Judging however I like to get as much information on each batch as possible. Brewing is a science and it should be recorded Brewing is a craft. It takes elements of science, yes, and these should be recorded, but they shouldn't be allowed to dictate. There is art and intuition mixed in with the science, as well, which is what makes it a craft. I know musicians who never miss a single note; never miss a cue; never get off-tempo. I hate listening to them. You know what else never misses a note or a cue or gets off-tempo? A music box. I'd rather listen to someone like Ray Charles or Stevie Ray Vaughan, who make me feel what they're feeling in their music, mistakes and all. That's artistry. That's intuition. That's something that can be learned, but can never be taught. Yes, they practiced their scales and exercises, and they warm up and make sure they're ready to play before each performance or recording session; they'd be fools and hacks if they didn't. They know their fundamentals. But they also know when to spread their wings and let their spirit take them, supported by those fundamentals. Some of my best beer recipes were arrived at by coloring outside the lines. Numbers can tell you where you're going and where you've been. But they won't tell you what you've experienced.
  4. This is why I don't like smack packs. I've used them, yes, but they're not my first choice. I can never be sure I've actually broken the inner pack. I much prefer using vials of White Labs liquid yeast and making a starter.
  5. Welcome to the forum, and to the wonderful world of homebrewing! I don't want to seem as if I'm picking on you, madman, because you're certainly not the first or the only new brewer to ask, but it always amuses me when people ask what's a good beer to brew. It all depends on what you like to drink. Mr. Beer has got a lot of the styles covered, from light blonde ales and Mexican Cervezas to coffee stouts and Belgian dubbels. All of them are good representations of the styles. But not all of them are to everyone's liking. I don't really care for stouts and porters, although I've made my share of them. Some people don't like pale ales. Doesn't mean they're not good beers to brew. It just means they're not good for THAT person. What do YOU like in a beer? A really bitter IPA? A mild, balanced ale? A smooth lager? A dark and chewy stout? It's up to you. Mr. Beer has got you covered, that I know. Welcome again, and happy brewing!
  6. Yeah, since I have to sanitize the priming bucket, I run sanitizer through the siphon into the bucket. That sanitizes the inside workings. And I use a spray bottle to spray the exterior.
  7. For IBU, brewing software should give you a good figure. If it's off by 2 or 3, who's gonna know? For SRM, that's a bit trickier. I've seen charts online, and I even got a nifty lanyard with SRM ranges on it at the National Homebrewers Convention. The thing is, anything I used would be dependent on the quality of the printing, so how accurate is it? I don't worry too much about SRM, preferring to just admire whatever color the beer is. Of course, if I intended to brew an IPA and it turned out looking like a porter, I'd be concerned. But that's not likely to happen, and it's pretty low on my list of brewing priorities anyway.
  8. I'd drink it. Looks like a pretty good recipe. Be sure to keep notes so you can make tweaks and adjustments in future batches, because I'm betting you'll want to make this again.
  9. "SelfFueled" post=389193 said:Not sure on how long it takes for eggs to hatch, but after your bottling, definitely sanitize inside and out of LBK and also the cooler. If it laid eggs, those small ones could prob get in the LBK, and that would be so gross. A cockroach egg case will hatch within 30 days of being deposited. From it, as many as 25 nymphs can hatch. They will mature within 60 days and be able to reproduce.THIS is why they're so difficult to control. Having said this, are you sure it was a roach and not an earwig or a beetle or something that might resemble a cockroach? Was the cooler/LBK in the kitchen or the basement, or some other place, because roaches aren't real fond of traveling too far to find food. If you have them in your kitchen, it's a problem you'll want to address, because it ain't going away by itself.
  10. I don't think there would be any advantage to taking up fridge or freezer space. Look at it this way: How are the grains stored by the supplier and the LHBS? They're not refrigerated the way the hops and yeast are. If they don't do it, why should we?
  11. I use tap water and 12-oz. glass bottles, mostly Sam Adams, but it's really a hodgepodge.
  12. If you're going to be using grains on a more regular basis, I'd recommend getting a vacuum sealer. You're not always going to be using exactly a pound of grain in a recipe, especially when it comes to specialty grains. I can only buy by the pound at my LHBS, so when I have a recipe that calls for, say, 1/2 pound of chocolate malt, or 1/4 pound of Crystal 60, I use what I need and vacuum seal the rest. It keeps more or less indefinitely. But I second the grain mill. I crush my own grains, and wouldn't have it any other way.
  13. It tasted like a watery Bud Light. But hey, it was MY watery Bud Light! Good perspective. I always say, your first taste of your first homebrew may not be the best beer you'll ever taste, but it'll definitely be the most satisfying. Congratulations.
  14. Joe, I think it was Gymrat who noted in another thread that there came a point for him where brewing became a chore, and he didn't want it to be, so he went and changed things up a little. That's kind of the way I felt. I'd been brewing/bottling every week since around October, and it started to get to the chore phase. Plus, it was getting too hot around here, and I also knew I had upcoming plans that would get in the way. So I've cut way back for a month or two. I'll be getting back to AG fivers starting Labor Day weekend, and will probably ramp up to the weekly schedule shortly after. In the meantime, I'll be doing MB batches every two or three weeks to carry me through the summer. But it's good to take a bit of a vacation, even from a driving obsession. Starting fresh really opens some doors.
  15. Everything seems normal. No worries. Your temperature is actually ideal, IMO. As Rick said, let it go three full weeks before you bottle, and then let those bottles sit at room temperature in the dark for four weeks. Then chill one for a couple of days and enjoy your homebrew!
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