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Joechianti last won the day on April 2 2015

Joechianti had the most liked content!

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About Joechianti

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  • Birthday 05/10/1955

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    Austin, Texas
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    Brewing, Cooking, Gardening, Learning.

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  1. Update: Been derailed by life for awhile. Just came back and found this thread. Ended up after 18 batches, all successful, just plain getting bored and wanting to start another yeast variety. I don't brew often enough to keep more than two yeast varieties going, so I keep one harvested yeast going for lighter brews and one for darker brews, and I rotate every other batch. I would have really liked to see just how far that first one would have gone, but like I say, I just got bored and wanted to try another one. That one was from a 5 gm packet of Coopers/Mr Beer yeast that comes with an HME. I think I replaced it with a Fermentis Safe-ale T-58 a few batches back. That's for my darker brews, and I have an ongoing harvest from Fermentis S-33 for the lighter brews. No special reason for choosing which one was used for light or dark- it was just what was handy at the time. I usually bottle and brew on the same day, harvesting the yeast from the batch that's getting bottled, putting it aside in fridge, and pulling the previous harvest out of fridge to use on the new batch. Works like a charm for me, but I realize that there's more than one way to skin a cat. Each person will customize the process to fit their own schedule and such. They're all just variations of the classic yeast harvesting method. Some shortcuts and alterations work out just fine, and some just don't. We all find what works for us.
  2. Nick, I've brewed directly on the trub, or yeast cake, as some call it, with fine results. Usually only half of the volume from the previously bottled batch is enough to get the job done. Worst that can happen with the full volume is an overflow from a too vigorous fermentation. I prefer to mix some boiled and cooled water into the trub and pour it into a sanitized quart jar to settle out while I clean and sanitize the LBK for the next batch. I actually put that one in fridge and use one I saved from the batch before that has been in fridge already a few weeks. I pour off the liquid from the top, then let the jar sit and get to room temp while I brew my newest batch. Then I pour the middle yeast layer into the new batch and discard the bottom layer of hops. I've produced 18 consecutive batches that way. I finally just discarded that jar of harvested yeast and started a new one. No telling how many more times it would have worked.
  3. For what it's worth, I have tried going the Windex route. Wiped down counters, walls, even the patio doors with it before brewing. Eventually got tired of picking up dead birds that flew into the glass doors. Also tried the goo be gone. Probably would have worked out if my best friend's name didn't happen to be Goo. He's been gone for some time now and I sure do miss him.
  4. Don't know the science behind it. I do know I really like any Lagunita beer I've tried.
  5. Excellent article. Thanks for posting it.
  6. +1 to Squeegee. Just gentle hand tighten is plenty fine. I also usually add in a pinch of yeast nutrient to kick start and shorten lag time. On my most recent batch, I forgot the nutrient, and it still tarted kickin' butt in 4 or 5 hours. And that's about the 17th time around from one single 5 gram packet of Coopers/Mr Beer yeast. I only brew every other weekend, so I only have 2 jars of yeast in fridge, one for light colored beers and one for dark. I just alralternate every other batch, so yeast never sits in fridge longer than 2 weeks, and 1/2 of the clean middle of a jar is enough each time.
  7. Two cans alone of Witty Monk, in no more than 8 quarts of total volume in LBK, made a very pleasant, easy drinking beer. You could add a bag of booster, or even 1 to 1 1/2 cups of table sugar to give it a little more kick. That would even help smooth out any possible twang from being so old. The cans you have most likely have expired by now, but I've made plenty of drinkable beer out of expired extract. Life isn't always perfect, but that's when we adapt and bend a little. The biggest thing you'll notice is a darker color.
  8. It's certainly a matter of taste per individual, but FWIW, I've found a compromise that works really good for me. Instead of adding 2 lbs of sugar or 2 lbs of malt to a 3.75 lb HME for a 5 gallon batch, I use 1 lb of sugar and one lb of malt. Then split between 2 LBK's. May not work for everyone, but it works for me.
  9. That's plenty good enough for me. Thanks, Josh.
  10. That's an EXCELLENT point. I would love to know what the tolerance level is for the Cooper's yeast that comes with the HME's. Can you get that info for us, Josh?
  11. Something tells me it includes honey nut cheerios.
  12. For one thing, it sounds like you're not letting the bottles condition long enough. If I'm understanding correctly, your 3 batches conditioned in the bottle for 1 week, then 2 weeks, and then 3 weeks. They should all have gone 4 weeks each. Assuming you haven't opened all the bottles yet, give them more time and see what happens. And like Rick says, did you add priming sugar, and how much?
  13. Beer always looks good on paper.
  14. I have no knowledge of any downside. It has virtually no effect on taste, smell, color, body or anything. Supposedly it helps clarify the beer by helping the proteins drop down into the trub, and apparently that includes gluten. I'm totally happy with it.
  15. I made a Winter Dark Ale one time that had me worried. Crazy as it sounds, that thing smelled like bologna or salami when it was fermenting. I just kept on trucking and it turned out to be a good beer. Never did figure out what the heck caused that smell. HoHopefully yours will turn out fine as well.
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