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Brian N.

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About Brian N.

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    Sailing, camping, fly fishing, hiking, archery, ham radio, family & friends -brewing

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  1. The Beer Purity law was passed for reasons other than "pure beer". You certainly don't want harmful plants or substances added to your beer but, it's YOUR beer. Add what you like, fruit, wheat, corn, oats, honey, molasses, coffee, chocolate, etc. Brew a beer because it is a style you want to drink or share. If it happens to have just malted barley, water, yeast and hops, you still have beer. I think part of the fun of home brewing is discovering how many recipes result in a good, tasty beer.
  2. I'll go with a local craft beer when i am out at a restaurant, if they have any. Some are very good, and I like to support "Local" small brewers. At home I drink my own, mainly because i made them the way I like, and they mostly turn out great. Plus, I like the hobby of brewing. On the issue of MB changing the fermentation and carbonation times, I bet it is to help those new brewers get a beer done in less than two months (which is typical for me). They will still get beer, and mostly it will be fine.
  3. If your bottles caps are not leaking, the temperature is correct, and you are positive that you put sugar in to prime, you might want to try putting a few grains of yeast in - then recap and wait. Work quickly and as sterile as possible. Give them a full four weeks to carbonate.
  4. One of my favorites MB Oktoberfest, brewed with US-05. Keep the temperatures around 65-68 deg F if you can, and give it the full three weeks. I tend to go lower on the carb sugar, but that is a personal preference.
  5. Beer may not have been fully fermented at the time you bottled. In other words there were unfermented sugars left in the wort.
  6. Looks Delicious! Cheers!
  7. The Darwin Awards are always awarded posthumously (after the recipient removes them self from the gene pool) 😁
  8. You can get an estimate based on how much malt and sugars were used in making the wort. You can look on the Mr. Beer web site too. For example if you followed a particular recipe they give you the expected ABV.
  9. Start with cold water - the most important factor. Air is much more soluble at cooler temperatures. Shaking, stirring, whisking will all saturate the water with air quickly. I say air, unless you are bubbling pure oxygen from a tank. Well aerated wort will reduce lag time for the yeast, and get them off to a good start before they start their anaerobic phase. However, don't go crazy, as the same yeast, same recipe, and the same environmental conditions might give you different results brew to brew despite your best efforts.
  10. Have patience. You can't go wrong with three weeks fermenting (at the proper temperature) and letting the bottles sit for a month at room temperature while they carbonate and condition. Basically, you need 2 months (including a few days in the fridge before you imbibe your potent potable) 😉
  11. Cider-like taste and sour are very different. Often too high a temperature during fermentation will result in a cider taste. Sour is like a sour pickle (minus the salt).
  12. One thing to add - keep the bottles OUT of the fridge unless you are going to drink them all . Put what you expect to drink into the fridge 3-4 days before. Let the rest sit and condition longer. You'll notice a difference (a positive way) in the ones that condition longer. BTW I always opt for added malt rather than booster. I've never found that a packet of LME or a few ounces of DME wildly swings the flavor to make the beer too malty.
  13. I can't add much, except to repeat what has already been stated. Ferment most ales at around 66-68 deg F for three weeks, and you should have beer free from "off" flavors. Let them condition a full month at room temperature. A few days before you want to drink the beer, put what you expect to drink in the fridge (leave the rest out).
  14. Hydrometers are easy to use, look under RickBeer's post. No harm in going a few extra days either, but if the yeast are very cold, they have stopped working ( ale yeast). I think that 66 deg F is perfect, and I try to brew near that.
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