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Everything posted by mashani

  1. For me it's a trade off of time where I still end up with beer I like to drink. It is rare that I have a "day to brew" however I want. I often brew at night when everyone is asleep, and then when do I sleep? Also it sometimes just depends on what ingredients I have on hand. So... How much time do I have to brew... Where to I shave 30-45-60 minutes. Do I mash, but then not do a hopstand because I'm out of time to brew? Or do I do a extract/steep, but then incorporate the hop stand. Or do I have unlimited time to brew, if so, then hey I can go all out. It's not just about the mash time, but boil time too, IE do I have 90 minutes to boil a mash of pils? Usually not. So I usually do my pilsner batches with a late extract addition of MoreBeer pils, *even if* I PM other bits, because that shaves off 30 minutes. Or I'll use an HME as a bittering / base malt, and then build on it on days I have very little time, to shave off boil duration. Also in my experience to get full conversion, I find the difference between steep and mash duration to be like 20-30, even 40 minutes. No need for 30-45 minute steep, 20 is usually plenty for crystal and the like. No so for a mash. I test my mashes with strips, I know when they are done and not done. Nickling and diming the time spent by adjusting my process as needed, I can often brew 2-3 hours faster then if I went all out. It's why I am happy to incorporate an HME into recipes too, as long as I like the HME. Now I like to go all out, don't get me wrong. If I had unlimited time I'd do it all the time. I used to do it all the time. But I am not there at this point in my life, I have other things that eat too much of it.
  2. Only guess I got is the DME type was mislabeled on the package. IE you got amber DME instead of a light or extra light DME or something. Post a pic of the actual DME?
  3. It's talking about conditioning. As it bottle it and ignore it for a month or two. And I bet it will be good. The Canadian would be the base HME I'd suggest for any sort of light colored Belgian based on my experience with the new Mr. Beer HMEs. Or if not that then the Cerveza of all things... (really). I'd suggest the Ocktoberfest as the base for any darker Belgian, or else the Bewitched Amber. I would discourage using the Pilsner, it has a hop flavor (Pride of Ringwoody) that doesn't belong in a Belgian. The Bewitched has it too, but it doesn't bug me as much as it does in the pilsner. If you like that at all, then brew the same thing with Trappist High Gravity (Wyeast 3787) yeast sometime.... that would be dang good stuff I think.
  4. I'm drinking a more fully conditioned bottle of my modded version where I added a bit of DME, and 1/2l oz of Nelson Sauvon between T-15 and T-5, and then another 1/2oz in a hopstand, and overfilled a bit to make up for the DME addition. I like it. It's still like Fantome Blanche had a baby with Anchor Humming, but more towards the Anchor Humming side of things now. So a bit more IPA like and less weird Wit Bier like. I poured the thing over an hour ago and it still has head, so I'm happy with that. I did carb it somewhat highly then a normal IPA, since it's a wit/Belgian mix, so that is likely helping. So my basic suggestion for those who want this to be really IPA ish is to add a full ounce of high AA hops as a hopburst/hop stand. I think anything that would be good in an IPA will work fine. Even though I like it I'm not sorry I bastardized my other can into 4.6 gallons of Saison... I'm sure that will be good too, and I get 2x the beer for not much more $$.
  5. You should have reported that to Mr. Beer and got replacement yeast. That yeast is worth 5+ bucks.
  6. Krausen fell which is expected at this point with this yeast. It is sitting at 73 degrees, and the aroma from it is awesome. I kept smelling it when bottling my Chimay Doree like beer, and it made me happy.
  7. Since I use easyclean (LD Carlson's one-step clone), I use my keg to mix it, and I literally fill my LBK totally to the top with the solution. So I put way more pressure on my spigot then when the beer actually is in there. If it's going to leak, I *know*. I then drain a bunch of the solution out of my spigot and into a big bowl an use it to sanitize everything else. This also has the nice side effect of sanitizing my spigot which is always a good thing.
  8. Yeah, if you want to experiment on me, I'm game.
  9. I bottled this. It's been sitting at 72-73 degrees for a week. It finished at 1.009. It tasted freaking awesome right out of the LBK, so I think I will be very happy with it. It's very Chimay in it's profile. How close to actual Doree it is will be very hard for me to fathom, as it's not convenient for me to walk to the Abbey of Scourmont or nearby hotels at the moment... so it's not really possible for me to get any of the real stuff right now. But it's pushing all my buttons. I do remember the real thing being a bit more citrusy then this, so more citrus or citrusy hops of some kind would be called for, or different temperature control if you can coax citrus out of the Chimay yeast. But still, it's dang good at the moment. I've been on a roll with beers I could just drink out of the keg, I've never had this many like that before. With carb of course more of the orange or coriander should show through so we will see. But I'm thinking it needs more or something. Also, maybe a bit more wheat and a bit less pils, I remember the real thing being cloudier then my sample.
  10. Simcoe has some grapefruit, but usually it's more hidden behind the pineyness. Maybe the Amarillo brought it out/enhanced it somehow with how the oils blended in the final product.
  11. @JohnSand, he's talking about doing those pressure cooker boils with extract or extract + steep recipes. The extracts have been through a long boil already, so the DMS compounds have been more or less driven off. Yes, I know that folks say that DMS compounds get formed anytime you heat wort, but frankly, I've boiled experimental extract batches with the lid on for 30 minutes and not had any notable DMS in the resulting product, and my friend who does No Chill and bottles up boiling wort gets no notable DMS, so I think his suggestion is fine in this regards. I consider the DMS risk here another one of those "things brewers know because someone said it, but it doesn't really happen in some scenarios", where this would be one of those scenarios. @Screwy, the most useful thing I found here is the flashpoint numbers for the various oils, as I knew a couple of them, but not the others. EDIT: The one thing I would disagree with is his simplistic descriptions of what the oils bring to the party. For example, the Farnesene - it's not just apple flavors/aromas. It is very floral, it's used in perfumes, because it smells like magnolias and orange blossoms and has hints of spice behind it. What you get out of it depends on how you treat it, so if you boil the snot out of it then maybe your left with just the apples or pears, but if treated gently you should get a lot of good stuff. I think this is why hop standing is so interesting, as you get more of the "good stuff" you miss if you boil.
  12. I make lots of 3%ish Milds and 4%ish bitters that have lots of flavor and body and I use yeasts like Windsor or London ESB in them, which leaves more body behind. What I was getting at is that these kinds of beers would likely survive the heat/alcohol dissipation process to make then "really low abv" better with more good flavors still intact and less of the "off" ones then those low ABV light lager types, since they have more "good" flavor to begin with. Probably the 4%ish Patersbiers I make would work better then a light lager too, as they have lots of flavor too. It might be worth an experiment sometime, although I personally consider these beers to be "low abv" to begin with which is why I make them.
  13. You can experiment with 30/20/10/5/0 kinds of additions too. Starting at T-30 gives you a bit more bitterness, but still no bite, so if you find the T-20 start to not be as balanced as you like, try the T-30 next time. Also note that this kind of hop schedule works best with higher AA hops. If you are using a lower AA hop, you are going to get malty beer unless you throw in an obscene amount of hops.
  14. If you find Muntons GOLD kits there, or the Woodforde Kits that Muntons also makes and are just like Muntons GOLD kits, then you can use 1 of the 3.3# cans that come with them in an LBK and make really good beer. One of those kits contains two 3.3# cans, so you get 2 LBK batches per kit. No need for adjuncts or extras, they are completely self contained. You may just want to get a second pack of yeast to use with the other can, they only come with one pack of yeast.
  15. Your making lots of beer I want to drink. Simcoe and Amarillo are things I love. EDIT: and tossing 1# of munich in just about anything is also a thing I love.
  16. They are yummy if you like a mix of piney/earthy hops and citrusy/fruity hops, with the profile pushed more towards the citrus/fruity side, and the citrus being more lemony/tangerine like, not grapefruit. If you don't like Citra then they would not be so hot, as those kinds of tropical fruity flavors are more of what I taste then anything. You'll get boat loads of flavors and aroma if you use all your hops in a 20/10/5 addition, and you should get enough bitterness to balance the beer. But you will not get the "bite" that you get in an IPA that had a long boil hop addition. It's a matter of taste, I like beers both ways, but some people think it's not an IPA if it doesn't have the "bite".
  17. There are times I have wished folks would make GOOD low abv beer. Typically they are light lagers, and they let the "off flavors" from the heat dissipation stand out. In something that actually has a lot of flavor from crystal, or from roasted malts, it would hide those "off flavors" more and actually be a tasty low ABV drink.
  18. Pride of Ringwood are used as bittering hops by Coopers. They have a weird woody/earthy rough edged flavor unlike any other hop I know of. You can taste this flavor even if it's just used as a bittering hop. Its a common flavor you will get across many Coopers HMEs, and also many of the new Mr. Beer/Coopers HMEs. How much you notice it depends on your own taste thresholds and what else is in the HME, IE a dark roasty HME or one with lots of crystal malt you may not notice it at all, but in a pilsner it might be in your face. I actually don't taste it in all the Coopers/Mr. Beer refills, but I do in some of them. I've never met a big coopers can that I didn't taste it in, but I haven't brewed them for a while, so it may just be that my taste buds are getting old and lame LOL. I find that copious amounts of late hops like Simcoe, Columbus or the like in an American style can cover it up for me.
  19. @Monty: To put it simply re: the big coopers cans. If you put a coopers bitter into an LBK straight up, what you get out of it is more like an English IPA. IE very bitter, but not with as much flavor/aroma as an American IPA. Do it with the stout and you get something more like a highly bittered "export stout" instead of a normal dry irish stout. It doesn't mean it is "bad", just that it's not what is intended. Which may or may not be bad, it just depends on what you expect, and the kind of big coopers can you select. EDIT: I also do have to say if you don't like the Pride or Ringwood flavor, doing this totally amps it up.... so you are warned there. Now what makes good beer for sure in an LBK are the Muntons Gold kits. They come as 2 3.3# cans, and 1 can per LBK makes really good beer - they are designed for using both cans in a 5-6 gallon batch and no other additions. And they have no Pride or Ringwood, so if that bugs you they are that much better. Anyways, I got my cans of this stuff, but I don't know when I'm going to brew them yet... got my "spring seasonal" saison going ATM.
  20. One other thing I can tell you from when I made mead and maple wine. For me at least, it was always better to simply pasteurize the must vs. boil the crap out of it like some mead makers do, and I did at first. I always ended up with a drinkable product sooner, and I always had better aromatics in the final product when I did this.
  21. "RickBeer" post=379436 said: "JimH" post=379426 said:My current beer using MB fromunda yeast had a slight sulfur smell to it. You should be fine! but you probably should not be taking the lid off the LBK either. Really BAD idea to open the LBK every day. Especially if you stick your face or any other body part over top of the hole... But as others have said, the sulphur smell is normal, ignore it, it will go away.
  22. I suggest reading MoreBeers "Guide to Mead Making". (Google morebeer guide to mead making, it will be one of the first few links). If you follow the nutrient and ph adjustment regimen they lay out you can get mead that is good to drink much sooner then if you do not. Their kits are bigger then you want to brew, but you can apply the same principles to the Austin Homebrew small batch kits, you just need to get the right kinds of nutrients on your own.
  23. I agree that you are making beer if you see trub, but hmm... Did you use the 3787 Trappist High Gravity yeast that came with it or did you use the dry yeast under the lid? Or did you perhaps use both? See the thing about 3787, is when it's happy in a batch with that gravity, the krausen should be an impressive sight, if not foaming out your lid. Its a blowoff machine that can make krausen as much as 1/3 the height of the wort it's sitting on top of. Really. In the last beer I made with the same strain, what I called "Darth Patersbier" which was a much lower gravity beer, it created a 4" krausen and I still had 1/2" of krausen on top when I bottled the beer, because it makes such a hard rocky krausen that sometimes it doesn't even fall long after fermentation is complete. So what I'm getting at is "it ain't right", although you should still get beer. Do you happen to remember the date that was on the packaging of the 3787? Did you smack it and let it swell before pitching it? I'm assuming you didn't make a starter, but did you oxygenate your wort (whip it into a froth while stirring it?). And 74 isn't really too high to pitch or ferment 3787, it will be ok in that regards as long as you like Belgiany beer flavors. That should have made it overly excited, not grumpy. It's ok to ferment with it even at 78-80.
  24. "haerbob3" post=379364 said:One thing do you have a source for date sugar I have yet been able to find it locally. I am thinking about making a candi syrup when the choke cherries are ripe, maybe some elder berry blossom. If your have a grocery store that sells "Bob's Red Mill" products (look in the specialty flour section or the gluten free section) then they may sell or at least can get Bob's Red Mill date sugar. My local grocery store and my local Whole Foods can both order it if I ask. It's not the cheapest stuff in the world, that's the downside... Or, if you want highly unrefined date sugar, which although it has impurities, still is really good for making darker candi syrup try an Indian/Pakistani grocery store if you have one around. You can usually buy blocks or chunks of date jaggery/gur there in various shades. That stuff is already partly inverted as a bonus. Not all of it is made from dates, so if they have a "cheap kind" and an "expensive kind" the expensive kind is likely the date variety. I've used it and it works well. Sometimes they have it as a soft sugar too.
  25. Woke up this morning to a house that smelled awesome and krausen out the wazoo and fermenter in the 70s already. Happy yeast is happy.
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