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Everything posted by Manowarfan1

  1. Even with the basic refills, going 3 weeks in the LBK (little brown keg) can't hurt and 4 weeks at room temp in bottles (keeping them in a box is fine, actually better as it helps block light and contain bottle bombs if they were to occur). Then, I start feeding them into the fridge for a couple of days before trying one. Do not put them all in at once, allow them to keep conditioning so you can taste changes as they continue to conditoin. I would advise you to take notes on each brew you do, from ingredients, brew day notes, measurements and to incldue taste notes as you work your way thru themj. once you have several batches bottled and conditioning it becomes much easier to let them condition longer as you can add once or two from each batch at a time to the fridge. In the meantime - read all you can, and harvest the good brown bottles (not twist off) that come with free craft beer inside them from your local liquor store - you will be needing those bottles soon enough Cheers jeff
  2. If you are just buying the cans of extract they will be fine stored unopened, same with some dried malt extract. Grains if you were using them, and had them crushed before shipping, wont fare as well but still be useful especiallly if they are stored in baggies and inside an airtight food container, Yeast needs to go in the fridge and hops in the freezer, other than that you are good to go. I hear you about the heat - i moved to the east coast almsot three months ago now and it is prolly 80% and humid IN the freaking house. Doesnt cool off at night here like it did in Colorado either. And I dont have a basement/beer room (yet) but when I do it will be the garage and sunroom and require air conditioner, crikey. Cheers jeff
  3. OK here is a thought- please stop me if this sounds insane. Kill two birds with one stone - use up some Pilsner Malt AND make a pumpkin spice beer? Insane? Could I use half the base malt as Pils and the rest two row then throw a little Crystal for color and go from there? I also wanted to try my hand making a jalapeno beer before these peppers i bought go totally bad (I dont eat them) - Pils seems like a nice light base for sometyhing like that. Thoughts? Any Borg still here? Feels so lonely - hope they get some of the functionality back in this site before everyone scatters to the wind. Cheers jeff
  4. Sounds like the Wyeast smack packs. With those be absolutely sure that the little nutrient pack within the pack is also broken or open. I am sure it would be alright even without it but it does help it get off to a better start, An hour is probably too soon to expect to see it swell up, they say to allow up to 24 hours I think. If nothing else you can snip the corner of the pack when you absolutely have to pitch and just dump it in - sanitize the scissors, maybe even the outside of the yeast packet. Then if after a day or two your fermenter doesnt have any trub on the bottom yet you can always pitch some dry yeast. If you go by just looking for some krausen at the top of your LBK you could miss it and think nothing is going on, but if you have trub at the bottom - the yeast is doing its thing. Cheers jeff
  5. Do you have a temperature controller for the spare fridge? If so you are all set - if not, may want to put a thermomether in there and see what the various settings get you in terms of temp. As long as you stay in the range you should be fine but if you can keep the variance to within a degree or two - awesomeness. Cheers jeff
  6. If you are attempting to make a true lager then you need to get that spare fridge of yours down to lagering temps, I am not familiar with that refill so it may be a lager or just an ale. As pointed out above you will probably want to use the whole liquid yeast but if not, you could always make a starter and pull some of that starter aside and save it for future batches (look for Screwy Brewer posts or washing yeast or just go to his site). As expensive as liquid yeast is, kinda smart to save it again for future uses. Not sure what way to go with the pumpkin as I know it generates a LOT of trub and not sure which yeasts go best with it, if you want something that will eat thru a bunch of it or you want something that will leave certain flavors, your choice I suppose. I will be looking to do some of these style beers as well so maybe I will just subscribe to this thread - DOH!, can't do that yet can we? Cheers jeff
  7. Also saw a beersmith podcast with Gordon Strong and he was using Pilsner Malt in a pale ale. Using 90% of grains split between 2 row and pilsner and 10% Munich (light). Some Galaxy and Cascade and 1968 ESB yeast - hmmm Cheers jeff
  8. So I found a potential recipe or at least grain bill for a Pilsner Malt based IPA/APA not sure how it would taste but it might be unique or something different at least. Probably only use one LBK for this until I see how it turns out - so a 2.5 gallon batch. They listed % so I would need to figure out the actual amounts, and then figure out a hop bill from the hops I have below, but how does this look to anyone with experience using Pils malt: 67% Pilsner Malt 13% Munich (I have 10L and also a real dark munich malt - I don't worry about color) 8% Caramunich (I also have caravienna and a few other beligian grains I need to use up) 13% Flaked oats For hops - not sure if I should go with something I have a lot of (Cascade, Warrior, Williamette all close to a pound), something old I need to use up (even though still in foil packaging - like Galena, Falconers Flight 1 oz packages) OR something that seems to be more european in light of the Pilsner malt (hersbrucker, tettnanger, northern brewer) although this will be done in an ALE style as I do not have the ability to lager just yet so I am not trying to do a Urquell type beer just yet. Oh also I still just ferment everything in a single vessel (LBK in this case) although I may grab a couple of secondary fermenters as we go forward and I start doing 5 gallon batches more frequently when I have a fridge with temp controls) I want to try to get this one done on monday and clear the decks for later in the week to get something dark going that can hopefully start aging for the winter months. Any thoughts? Experienced hands out there? I don't think I have had any Pils malt based IPAs but I believe there are some out there and I have had PrimaPils from Victory but that is more a lager so not sure it would apply in this case. Cheers jeff
  9. Yeah Joe I have a bunch of crystal malts - some dark, some of the lighter and a bit of medium. I know tha twith Pilsner malts you gotta go 90 minutes on the boil etc in case of DMS but was not sure if I could use it as the base malt for a stout or a porter or a pumpkin or winter type of beer because it starts out so light. I am actually looking forward to the fall and winter brews after having my first summer with humidity etc in 25 years. Looking forward to fireplaces and darker beers. Cheers jeff
  10. Howdy again Borg - hope everyone is sticking with the board even though the "growing pains" make it a pain in the behind. In doing an inventory I noticed I have 2 5lb bags of crushed pilsner malts. I think at the time I had originally planned on doing something light for summer (kolsch) but it seems that time is rapidly disappearing (of course now it will stay hot on the east coast for 6 more months). Anyone have any good or recommended recipes using Pils as a base malt? I am doing stovetop mashing or biab, and sticking with MrB sized batches unless there is a way I can cram it all into my 8 gallon pot and use that one on the electric stove. I do have the Ale Pale setup as well for fermenting the 5 gallon batches. Part of me is thinking of going all Nikola Tesla and using it as the base for a barleywine or something, taht would clear out all the malt, get me something fermenting that I can age a long time, and potentially be something unique (though not necessarily good lol). Another possibility is a fall/winter/pumpkin type of ale - oh yeah, don't have lagering ability yet but getting closer to being able to get the new fridge and temp controller, maybe a month or so out. Gotta sandwich it in between road trips of which several are upcoming. Cheers jeff
  11. Thanks for the replies, unfortunately I didnt see them before being finished but stuck pretty much to the plan. I didnt leave the mash in the oven for the full 60 I normally would - I saw on beer smith for 45 but I think that may have been when I had a different method picked (maybe BIAB or something). I did have the oven turned off after the preheat and when I put the grains in the 170F water it dropped it right down to 154 or so after stirrinng. I was aiming for malty and not hoppy even though SWMBO is becoming much more of a hop head (except for stouts and porters etc which have some bitterness built in). With regard to the base vs specialty grain bill - I was trying to empty out some bags I had for too long and keep from opening others (I could have opened the last bag of 2 row to get the other pound I needed but didnt want to until next brew day) so it will definitely be a kitchen sink/mutt of a beer but it will at least be something different coming out of the pipeline in a few weeks time. Looks like this one is going to ferment for 3.5 weeks as it would hit 21 days right when we head to Louisville for the ironman. We get back from that I have a week or so to bottle and brew up another batch of something before heading to ATL for the music fest. Hopefully around that time I will have some things finalized in garage and can move all brewing ops out there They say taht what doesnt kill you makes you stronger - so we will see if that is the case with this one Cheers jeff
  12. Hail Borg - slapping together a version of a red ale with some leftovers and had a few questions. Any feedback would be appreciated: 3 LB 14 Oz 2 row 8 oz Maris Otter (these two are a sub for 5 lb of 2 row) 4 oz Biscuit (subbed for Victory malt which I dont have) 2 oz Chocolate 350L 4 oz Crystal 150L (instead of 120L) 8 0z Crystal 60L (instead of 40L) 12 oz Vienna (instead of munich, using it all up as it was getting old) Dont have Amarillo or Centennial on hand so going all Cascade (cascade is only 5.6 instead of the 9 and 10s of the others). Last time I didnt do any bittering boil, just some 20, 10 and 0. Was going to go with .5 at 30, 1.0 at 20, 1.5 at 10 and 1.0 at flameout. Beersmith gives me 19 IBU and everything else including color is right in line or right on or barely over the line with regard to an Irish Red Ale (which it was originally). Mashing for 45 minutes when water was 176 and stove preheated to 170F. Add 3 quarts of water heated to 202 (?) for 10 minutes after that, remove grains and begin boil. Was going to use either US o5 or s04 but I do have an Irish ale yeast but havent made a starter and was saving that for later. It LOOKS like I am reading beersmith right and this may end up similar to the one I made before (partial mash extract) but better but my gut is telling me something is wrong. Any thoughts? Suggestions? Cheers jeff
  13. I hear ya on the bottlling a big batCh. I did a 5 gallon recipe from Austin Homebrew and had to botlle it yesterday. Man - I know it will be easier once everything is organized in a permanent place but I was dragging ass having to do more than 2 cases (I will be very happy about it later I am sure). I ended up cheating and did 16 of the MrB 16 oz bottles, 16 of the Grolsch and a six pack of regualr 12 oz bottles Yep, I was THAT lazy. I considered using up some of the 220z bottles I brought out here with me but kinda want to save those for bigger beers not a regular strength IPA. I gotta get to kegging - maybe once we get another fridge and have one in the garage taht can be temp controlled to ferment or serve beer - I can work on that I have a feeling you are gonna enjoy each and every one of those bottles once you break into them Cheers jeff
  14. Funny you say that - as since I arrived at SWMBO place in MD - I have been working on beers under 6% as that is what she prefers especiallly with only one month remaining before the Ironman - but I need to start on some bigger beers that I can let sit for a while and maybe forget about them until winter. So keep throwing out the recipes for the biggies Cheers jeff
  15. I can't offer any improvement as I am not familiar with some of the grains either, but I can ask questions as this looks tasty and like something I would be interested in making in the very near future. Amber malt - is this any particular brand of malt or any particular L? Would the carared make it "too" red to be an amber? (I personally do not care what color a beer is or if it matches its supposed style but some people do) I have all those hops on hand, and a bunch of two row and some other specialty malts (mostly crystal but also some of the belgian oriented stuff as well) that needs to get used up. Cheers jeff
  16. That looks like a very straight forward grain bill, I would have thought it would have been more complicated. I think I see this one coming up in the near future based on your recipe. How long do you plan on letting this one sit in fermenters? In bottles? Looks like a few people are doing some Stone clones of late, is that due to timing, to have them ready for the dark, cool months? Cheers jeff
  17. Things are settling down here so I may be up for some meetups in the area soon. We do have a trip to Louisville KY at end of August for Ironman Louisville, and my annual trip to ATL for heavy metal fest is first week of September but after that there will likely be trips up to Annapolis and a few other places. In doing a hash run (no, the legal kind) - it turns out taht several of the runners are also homebrewers, and apparently a couple of the people in SWMBO running club are as well. I have a pipeline started up but wont really be able to hit my stride until we get the garage and sun room done, and get another fridge, and a temp controller, and... but anyone down in the SoMD area hit me up. Cheers jeff
  18. Yeah - this one has been so active that bottle bombs would be a concern for me as well. Guess you can always just put them inside a plastic tub or bin to contain any shrapnel and liquids. This yeast seems like a beast. Guess I will be staying away from it for the time being, maybe fall will be a good time for me to start on a belgian just because I hope to have some temp control ability by that time. For all the time put in to this - I bet you are going to be justly rewarded when it is finally time to start sampling this bad boy Cheers jeff
  19. Thanks Bob - guess I will look into the 50' 1/2" copper immersion chillers. Can be had for the amount of credit I have and I can get adapters for the sink for indoors use and it comes with garden hose connections. This should work (hopefully) in current 15 qt pot but if not, I move up to the 32 qt and start making more 5 gallon batches Cheers jeff
  20. Hey Bob - As far as the water supply around here goes, I honestly dont know much about it other than the fact taht the water coming out of the hose or the taps is purty warm compared to what I was used to in Colorado (snow melt runoff from reserviors for the most part) but it comes out of the taps at 79F. I will likely not outgrow the 5 gallon batches (that I hope to do with my 8 gallon aluminum pot) for a while, if all is going well in a couple of years time I may look at trying an electric brewery to do 10 gallons etc. Don't have any pumps, connections or anything. I will definitely go with 1/2 inch diameter, as I will need all the help I can get with current water temps. Eventually if I get a pump down the road and can add an ice bath or some other form of cool water source for pumping or recirculating that will be great. For now, this will probably be the only thing I have going - just trying to shave off a lot of precious time in cooling phase (even though I have not yet had a problem, knock on wood). Plate chiller would be great - and I could get one for the amount of the credit, but I have no pump, and not sure about cleaning and care without being able to do things like backflow etc. So it seems (though I dunno, which is why I come to the knowledge of the Borg) that it would likely be an immersion or a counterflow (which to me seems like an immersion chiller wrapped in a hose). That help clarify my situation any better? Thanks again jeff
  21. Howdy all - I have about $90 on amazon credit for some books i sent in to them and am looking for the most bang for my buck in terms of brewing. Obviously living out east now especially in summer, ground water temps are not helping with chilling down wort very quickly so I am thinking of getting a chiller. Not sure I am ready for a plate chiller and all it's potential hassles and other expenses (pumps etc) so just want to start out simple. I can get either a counterflow or an immersion chiller for what I have available as a credit balance. For the time being I am just doing brew in a bag/stovetop mashes, although I may have a propane burner at my disposal (unless it is still in my garage in Colorado), and right now am just using a 15 quart pot but i do have a 32 quart (both aluminum, no valves etc) to use as well. May have access to an outside hose hookeup or could be kitchen sink. What do you chilling pros think? Pros? Cons? Something I have not considered equipment or hassle wise? Thank Ye Muchly Cheers jeff
  22. Howdy Borg - gonna try to make up a batch of the Crimson Ale I made watching the National Championship gamevs Notre Dame this past January. Turned out good but I never got to see how it aged as it resides in Colorado,and alas, I no longer do. I must have had some DME (3 pounds worth) sitting around then, don't now. I DO have a bag of the old That Beer Machine Golden Lager HDME sitting around here that prolly needs to be used a long time ago. Thinking about subbing that and some grains. I plan on making this one a all grain/brew in a bag thing not a partial mash. Can I just use 2 row in place of the whole DME, or if I can use up the TBM stuff, and add some two row to that? Whattaya guys think? Here is the original: 3.0 lb Breiss Golden Light DME .5 lb 40L .25 lb 120L .5 lb Munich .25 Victory Malt .125 lb Chocolate malt .25 oz Amarillo and Centennial at 20 mins .5 oz of each at 10 and at flameout. it was nice and malty, not very bitter (obviously looking at the hop schedule, i may throw in a little for 60 for bittering). Any thoughts? Cheers jeff
  23. Welcome aboard - it is a great hobby. A mix of science and art and the result is BEER!!! That does not make you crazy, it makes you clever like a fox. How many other hobbies reward your effort with beer Cheers jeff
  24. Thanks Wings - I couldnt find anything that would indicate there would be much difference or impact on the hops unless it might be to help preserve some of the aroma due to it being cooler temps but just wanted to be sure. I may take a reading and if it is where it should be throw it in the mini fridge for the weekend. Cheers jeff
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