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Everything posted by Manowarfan1

  1. Thanks all - I was hoping the Maris would work well as the brews I made with it before the move I was unable to try and therefore get any feeling for how things would go - gonna do a couple MO smash types soon to get a good feel for the grain. As to the 90 Minute mash - I wondered the same thing, here is some a Q&A from that thread: why do you mash for 90 minutes instead of 60? what does a longer mash achieve in this case? I like to make sure such a large grain bill is fully converted. It also gives me more time to do other things. So - if I am going to try to do two things at once (brew and bottle) I thought the extra time may work well for me - but as my grain bill is not as large as his (think he is making 5.5 gallon batches) I may not need 90? Just hit the 60 and start the hops as soon as boil starts? Thanks again jeff
  2. Hi all - since I have to bottle the Hill Tower Honey Wheat and decided to make it one long day and brew another batch to pitch directly onto yeast cake (first time woohoo) I was going to make the following recipe off of HBT forums (this is cut in half already for LBK size batch), but I just ran into a couple of problems marked with a ***: 5.5# 2 row *** only have 4.2 pounds of two row I have some other grains available but not sure they would pass muster as a "base grain" and may change profile a bit much but to make up for the pound shortage I would have Maris Otter, or a pound of Vienna (3.5L), or Belgian Biscuit or Belgian Aromatic (26l). I also do have a couple pounds of a Wheat DME. Any of these look good to anyone with experience mixing some of these things together? Or particularly nasty and to be avoided? .5# Munich malt*** - uncrushed - argh, guess I can use the old rolling pin method and maybe just use a bit more of this? 12 oz? full pound? 6 oz Crystal 60L Mash at 154 for 90 mins in a 90 minute boil add hops at: .5 oz Warrior at 60 .5 oz Centennial at 15 .5 oz Centennial at 5 Dry hop with .5 oz Centennial (his OG est 1.065 and FG 1.016) *** DONT HAVE CENTENNIAL SO SUBBING CASCADE - should be similar. Much thanks jeff
  3. Since I have to bottle a batch today I was thinking of doing something like this to start saving a little $ on some of my yeast (the Notty that I will be harvesting off of in a couple days will definitely be getting saved and/or recycled). I know to go from lighter to darker and maybe from lower og to higher I am just wondering about differeing styles in the case of the LBK I have today. I made the Hill Tower Honey Wheat using some old MrB cans we had lying around. I never did taste any of the MrB wheat refills before (this one has one WCPA and one Whispering Weizenbier refills plus some honey). Only a half ounce of Cascades at flamout and US-05 yeast. Shouldnt be any leftover "MrB" refill taste right? Thinking of doing a IPA or even a dIPA just because I was planning on letting this LBK soak in oxy clean overnight and then doing a batch tomorrow but if i can do this - I save a packet of yeasties. Anyone try this off of a MrB batch? I don't know how the WW tastes but can't imagine it having an overpowering remnant. Still, best to ask the Borg beforehand rather than contribute another "don't do this" lesson Cheers jeff
  4. "Suddenly Saison" starring Brooke Shields (or was that Suddenly Susan?) - well it is a lable idea and a future commercial endorsement possibility if nothing else
  5. After the last couple of summers and wildfires in Colorado - I always staqyed home on the fourth and watered the heck outta the yard, trees and sometimes even roof. Stayed up late because even though there could be active wildfires and bans - idiots always can be counted on to only think about themselves and their own fun. Now I am on the east coast - it has rained almost every day, is humid as hell and I cannot imagine anything being able to catch fire in this sauna like environment. That said - all our furry kids will be indoors and I am going to send notice to the renter of colorado house (no pets) that they may want to water the yard excessively regardless of any restrictions - just in case. Cheers jeff
  6. Well heck I have everything I need to try this now except the Amarillo (only have one ounce of it). Got bunches of other hops but really wanting to use the Amarillo so I can at least be in the ballpark of this beer that I have heard so much about. Add another item to the list of things to get once withdrawl from IRA arrives Just hope some places have a pound of Amarillo still available - a lot of stuff seems to be out at places until fall. Cheers jeff
  7. Belle Saison eh? I should probably get some of that considering what the temps have been like here on the east coast in the now two full months I have been ehre. Having a hard time keeping up with all the ice bottle/cooler stuff to keep things under 70F maybe just do something that can ferment higher to make things easier on myself Cheers jeff
  8. In a couple of weeks we will see how close I got to the FG and if I need to tweak the efficiency rating in QBrew. In the meantime - looking in to getting BeerSmith as well to help me figure out more stuff before hand as I dig more into the science of brewing. I need to find out about the water etc out here in Southern Maryland as I am sure it is much different from Colorado Springs water. Looking forward to giving this one a taste test and by that time it may be time to do a 5 gallon batch. I hate that I have that Ale Pale kit out there and nothing is in it yet. It may as well be fermenting along with all the LBKs. Patience, rule #1 (or 2 after sanitation) - after this 4 day weekend with SWMBO - there should be a lot more room in the garage to set things up in their semi-permanent home. THEN I can start with bigger batches, I hope Cheers jeff
  9. Yes a bit more ESB than regular bitter - but that is ok too - we both like Red Hook ESB The whole process of brew day is way different out here than it was in Colorado. I am on foreign turf, and dealing with a lot of things I didn't deal with out there but in time I will have everything dialed in and be able to get back up to what my %s were out there. Eventually it will be even better, when I can start doing larger batches out in the garage on the propane burner. Still want to be able to do these stovetop batches with decent efficiency as I think the LBK is a great size for testing out new things, recipes and for a somewhat quick brew day or being able to brew while doing other things around the house.
  10. Any particular aromatic malt Russki? I have some Belgian aromatic sitting around not being used for anything and have to get a buncha amarillo anyway
  11. I think the difference between the 10 and 20 will be minimal - slight color differnce? Personally I don't care what the color "should" be - I like a dark tasting light looking beer or vice versa - something that tricks the eyes is fine (and fun). The Victory for Vienna, not sure but like you said - 1/8th of grain bill. If you like it you can always save a couple and brew some up exactly per recipe and see what you like better. You may have just improved upon it Cheers jeff
  12. Wow thanks for that link Bob. Did you get one? Was it pre wired for USA or did you have to do anything additional once it arrived? It has a huge range but I can't tell if it has plugs to do both heat and cooling or if I would need something else. Temperature Measuring Range: -58 ~ 194 deg F Control temperature range: -58 ~ 194 deg F Working temperature: 32 ~122 deg F Storage temperature: -14 ~ 140 deg F Not sure what the differences in the above mean but it shouldnt matter for my purposes (unless one of our resident techie gurus sees something there). I can wait 10 days or so if it saves me a bunch of money and comes almost ready to go right outta the box. Thanks again Jeff
  13. Thanks for all the responses everyone. I guess the next step is to go ahead and jsut order one - hopefully a pre wired one so it can go rigght to work, then worry about getting a DIY one later. Gonna be pulling some funds out of the old IRA to get by the next few months before I am ready to get back to work (and hopefully by then some of the defense contractors on base are hiring). In the meantime if i run across a great deal on a fridge I will grab one of those but as of the past couple of days it looks like a new expense will be a bigger aquarioum. Dang baby turtles keep coming out of the Bay and getting in to her mom's pool we have been readying for summertime use. We have her neice putting some nail polish on shells before putting them back in the bay - if they show back up, we bring them home. I would name them all Darwin if they keep coming back to the pool after being released into Chesepeake but she won't let me as she thinks it is mean (or demeaning to them) So, I have lost count of how many furry family members we have between the two of us, and now it is time for the fish reptiles and amphibians to start representing apparenlty Cheers jeff
  14. So a brew day update (a hush falls over the crowd). Did everything the way I usually do only paid a little more attention to water etc before hand. Did the increased malt bill due to my low efficiency. Started grains at 164F stirred for a few minutes, temp dropped and I threw them into the preheated (to 170F) and turned off oven for an hour while I went for my jog. Came back and started heated up the second 1.6 gallons (starting total water is 3.2 figuring 1 gallon evaporating in an hour long boil) to 168F - pulled the first pot outta the stove, drained the grain bag over it - even gave it a little squeeze, not TOO worried about tannins. Dunked it in and out of the second pot for 5 minutes or so, stirring while I did it. Put in a strainer over a bucket so any additional runoff would end up back in there. Combined them - should be right around 3.2 gallons, raise to a boil, no boilover - woohoo. Throw in the 1 oz Fuggles (4.3AAU) and let it rock for an hour. Cooling took a bit, several sinks full of cold water & ice, eventually getting it to 77F. Threw in LBK - it was right at or a little above the 2.13 mark - hey so far the math is working. Add in a little cool water to bring temps down a bit more - end up at 2.4 gallons, no biggie, we got room. OG @ 77F was 1.052 - WTF? This IS a brand new hydrometer. I also spaced taking it again (i think) after the added .2 gal. So worst case scenario is that the 1.052 is for the 2.4gal scenario (but pretty sure it is for the original 2.13 and I didnt retake it). So - either I got much better efficiency by doing things a little better or smarter or new hydrometer is off (will test that after this post). I think doing a couple of things got me several points though - just stirring more, really "sparging" the heck out of it, then pouring the second pot thru the grains into the first pot, stirring and squeezing a bit more, knowing my water volumes going in etc. Now - IF (big if) it makes it all the way down to QBrew suggested 1.009 - according to the ScrewyCalc - I will have a 6% ABV Bitter. Oops, not at all what I was going for. I figure to not get that low, but will be interested to see just where this one ends up. I hope I didn't commit Sacriledge to the Hatted One nor make the Bit O' a Belter instead If this keeps up I may have to change the efficiency settings in Qbrew. According to the calc IF I get to 1.009 on this one my apparent will be 82 and my real attenuation will be 67 - which is about 14% higher than first couple of Maryland batches. Either way, looking forward to this one, and hope it is done relatively quickly as we could use a ncie bitter that doesn't cost 10/six pack Cheers jeff
  15. Howdy Hatted One - mine is just Plain Jane 2 Row I believe (maybe Breiss), and I will try to hit 158 before adding grains and putting in oven. 60 minutes good or should I go 90? Should I check it a few times in between and bump up the heat if need be? My normal procedure for the time being is just to preheat to 170 let it go for a bit, then cut off the heat and stick the boil pot in there for the hour. 3%ABV would end up being just fine. Who would ever thoughyt they would say that about beer? I know when I was young and broke it was about how much ABV could I get for my money (hence buying a 6 pack of Busch or Bud to numb the tastebuds before the 24 pack of National Bohemian or a few 40 oz of Olde English or Mickeys). I promise to try to stay true to the recipe and report back accurately for others like me who may not have high efficiency or a lotta knowledge to help pass on the Bit O' Bitter to others. Hopefully they can learn from any mistakes I make. Also from my first days after getting the MrB kit (the first one) if I had not found this forum I would have been chasing ABV, kinda nice to have something tasty and easy for people to make that can show them it aint all about the ABV. Cheers jeff
  16. Hey Bob - I don't THINK it has that feature - if so I have not found it yet. Since my actual efficiency seems to be at about 55% on the two batches I have bottled thus far out here I will use that as my % and maybe bump up the grains. In doing that I would make it 2.75 lb 2 row and then bump the other grains up to .75 (I think Qbrew only does pounds not ounces for grains). Doing this bumps it up to 3.9% abv and a 1.040 OG @ the 2.13 gallon mark. However as I don't know for sure how much I will end up with I can adjust that after the brewing is finished. Since I am upping the grains to 4.25 pounds total, I would mash in 6.375 quarts (4.25*1.5) so basically 1.6 gallons of water. To this I will add another 1.6 gallons after it comes out of the oven to get me to 3.2 gallons - which with a 60 minute boil should end up with about 2.2 gallongs of goodies - if I am doing this math correctly. This is the first time I am really doing a bunch of the math BEFORE hand. It would appear that after a year and a half I am finally learning a bit more about how things work lol. Now watch this be the time that my BIAB/partial mash stove top method yeilds like 70% and things are off again Cheers jeff
  17. Howdy all - got an LBK freed up and soaking so that I can refill it right away tomorrow. Was going to try our own Fedora Dave's Bit O' Bitter to have something mild and low ABV for the sweltering summertime here. I actuallly have everything i need on hand, so that is a good thing. Trying to put into QBrew and I have a couple of questions based on some changes I may have made to Qbrew. Want to make sure I get this cleared up or clarified before I brew so I don't dishonor The Hat's recipe. As it is an LBK batch I halved all his ingredients. THus I have 2 lb of 2 row and a half lb of 60L and Maris Otter. I have it entered as a 2.13 gallon batch right now. (i have the fuggles and Notty yeast on hand too but grains are the question here). When I input this into QBrew, I end up with an OG of 1.028 and a ABV of 2.7%. Is this because I have my efficiency for mashing set at 55? Also if I am supposed to mash at 154F with 1.5 qts per pound - would I use 4.5 quarts as my volume instead of the 2.13 (or more likely 2.25 or even 2.5 gallons size I want to have for bottling). Should I just keep upping the amount of the grains until I get closer to the OG Dave listed and the estimated ABV? If I mash in only 4.5 quarts of water, can I then add 3 more gallons of water after this (heated up to ?) and do my full volume boil down to say 2.25 or 2.5? Really want to do this right because I have a feeling this one may end up needing to be done in 5 gallon batches if I can keep from screwing it up. Myself and SWMBO need something tasty and lower ABV to allow us to get things done around here in summertime. Thanks all Cheers jeff
  18. OK so after a craigslist purchase of an old chest freezer (only a 5 or 6 footer), I also checked the old dorm fridge I have out in the garage. One (and only one LBK will fit in it if I turn it a certain way. So, by getting chest freezer I accomplish 1)getting hops out of SWMBO freezer 2) getting rid of tons of frozen water bottles out of SWMBO freezer 3) storage space for more meat and veggies that we find on sale and the mini fridge COULD be used as a fermenter space for one of many LBKs if i get a controller hooked up to it. Can these temp controllers be easily moved around? I will be looking for a full sized fridge on CL but figure if I can order the controller and get familiar with it now, it might be worthwhile using the mini fridge in the meantime. Good idea? jeff
  19. your LBK sized batch would require 1/4 tsp of each (if I am reading SB's ure what to do with freshly zested orange versus dried. I have those ingredients and am going to be doing them soon but I do have the already dried orange peel. Not sure how much difference the weight of freshly zested would make. Two should be fine, but then again this is me talking and I don't know crap Cheers jeff
  20. Now that I know that QBrew is asking for a pre boil volume it may end up a little better. Glad not too many people seem too worried about stuff - as I just bottled my second Maryland batch today, it is hard to get things like hydrometer readings when you have things in coolers with frozen bottles for cooling. Thus Qbrew was expecting an FG of 1.013 but I came in at around 1.020. Of course, that was based on me putting in 2.5 gallons as the size (my amount of liquid after adding yeast to LBK) so not sure how much my OG and FG would have changed if it showed what my pre boil volume was. My efficiency according to Screwy's calculator is usually around 50%. I get most of my grains pre milled so not sure what else I can do (i am doing stove top BIAB right now). I raise temps of water to 160 or so (usually), add grains, throw pot into oven preheated to 170F and turned off, let sit for an hour, then "sparge" (or maybe rinse?) with a gallon of water heated to 170 (either pour thru bag into boil pot or sometimes dunk the grains in second pot of 170F, then combine the two). Good news is that I figured out I can fit ONE lbk in the little mini fridge I have in garage. I could get a temp controller and use that as a fermentation chamber in addition to the cooler and ice bottle method. Still looking for a full size one on craigs list. Got a small chest freezer for 100 today, taht will allow me to get hops and ice bottles out of regular freezer, have a place for frozen stuff when it is on sale (meats and veggies) and be able to do ice bottles in garage closer to coolers. There doesnt seem to be a whole lot of documentation on Qbrew - eventually I may be getting beersmith - I want to watch some of the videos on it online first. Seems like a good program and Brad Smith seems like a really nice guy who loves the hobby. Cheers jeff
  21. OK this topic has already been helpful in that I went in and found and changed the efficiency in QBrew. Next up I will start putting in starting volume for water/batch size as opposed to what I have been doing is putting in what my finishing volume has been, so that will help. Next, as I get more into all grain/biab type stuff before I go to the propane cooker etc - I will ask this and try not to sound too stupid (as I have been "brewing" or at least making beer for well over a year, heck maybe 2 now). How and when are you guys measuring OG? What steps do you take when it doesn't match up? I have been using QBrew as a note taking, measuring device but always looked at things as being AFTER the fact, not before or during (thought you had to have beer smith or pro mash etc for that). So if I have my efficiency set right, and put in the pre mash or boil water volume and it says I should have a 1.050, when are yo9u guys taking the reading? After mash but before boil? After boil? Will hydrometer stand up to that heat in a boil pot? I have only ever used it right before pitching yeast (to get my OG) and when getting ready for bottling (to get FG and cvalculate ABV). I now realize that with those things (water volume, efficiency changed) that all my past data is going to be "off". I have been putting in the notes what actual OG was and FG and calculating off of that (thanks to Screwy Brewer calculators). There is always so much to learn with this, and since I have been making pretty good beer up until now - I can't wait to see how this helps (and up my effiency etc). If Qbrew can be used like this maybe I dont need something like Beersmith just yet. Also - how far "off" do you allow yourself to be concerned? a point or two I would think could be anything - reading hydrometer, correcting for temp, fractional efficiency difference...so what is the Red Flag # for you? Thanks jeff
  22. We will see how the two HMEs play together - i will play the role of your royal taste tester and make sure it is suitable for consumption
  23. I am gonna hope the IBUs for these in QBrew are accurate and that 39 is a good balanced brew Not coz I have to save hops - got a couple pounds of the durn things (a good problem to have) but just seeing what the LMEs are like without them. It will be (hopeully) a respite from several batches of IPA in the pipeline, and the Centennial Blonde referred to on here and a honey wheat. Monday I will probably bottle up another of the LBKs and tuesday get another batch going - maybe use up that TBM hopped DME (either the dutch lager or golden pilsner, cant remember which it is). After that - cabinet shall be emptied out for SWMBO and I should have some room set up in the garage to do most everything except for actually brew - still doing stovetop for a little while longer although it is not all taht pleasant in this heat Cheers jeff
  24. Thanks Monty. As of this moment (just started the "mash" of grains - I am planning on using both cans of porter together. May be a first time anyone has done that. If it turns out great I am going to have to have someone in Colorado grab some more of the Black Tower from a store I know still has some of the old refills Skipping the additional hops to keep the IBUs within style guidelines just coz we have a bunch of IPA in the pipeline as we both like them and it costs a lot to keep refilling fridges with store bought Once I get garage emptied and cleaned up and sorted I will start using my 5 gallon propane burner gig to do bigger batches of sure thing beers. Don't have any of the LME paks from MrB, I do have some wheat DME for some recipe that apparently never got made but I will save that for one of next batches. Going to try to have 4 LBKs going staggered a few days apart on each until I get things built up to the point we can actually start drinking out of a couple of the batches. We both love porters and darks so a porter or stout may be coming up again shortly but it will be an all grain/BIAB kind. Trying to empty out one of the cabinets in the kitchen that is filled up with beer related stuff that she ordered or I had sent her. I even have one of the Beer Machine hopped DME things in there that I am going to use as a base for something in the next week or two. By that time I hope to have things somewhat organized around here and can get creative again Cheers jeff
  25. Hi all - trying to empty out some remaining old cans of MrB stuff to make room for newer. I have one of the old Black Tower and one of the newer Mr B American Porter. When I put the stuff in QBrew the IBUs really jump up on this one using the following potential recipe. I will list my questions after the end of the recipe and see what the Borg says: 1 can Black Tower Porter (1.21 lb) 1 can American Porter (1.87) Black Patent (2 oz or .125 lb - empty out old stuff) Chocolate Malt (350L 3oz or .187 lb - empty out old stuff) Crystal 80L (.5lb, a little head retention, some mouthfeel) May throw a little unsweetened cocoa in at the end of boil. Here is the biggie - I was originally going to add 1 oz of Kent Goldings (approx 5.0AAU) for 60 minute boil. At the end of fermentation was going to add a little vanilla extract. I am not a stickler for sticking to syle or anything I just want to make something that will taste good but this takes the IBUs to 73 or so whereas even choosing the Robust Porter style it is way over on bitterness and color. If I drop the Kent Goldings entirely it fits in the middle of style for IBUs. Anyone had the American Porter and can verify it is right where it needs to be without additional Hop Help? Am I insane to mix the two porters? Would I do better to just make up two different porters? If so, which one would do better with a little help in the form of the grains I really need to use up (I have a bunch of other stuff 2 row, white wheat etc- - but these darker grains are needing to get used up methinks so I definitely want to get them into something today). I am not trying to make a muddled mess and sometimes simpler is better, just want to have a relatively simple brew day today as it will be hot and I want to fill up an LBK with something other than an IPA as I have several of them going already and have "kitchen sink" type items that need to be cleared out Cheers jeff
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