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Brian N.

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Brian N. last won the day on May 20

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About Brian N.

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    Brewmaster

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

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  1. From the "Beer of Kings" to our American version (brewed with rice) "The King of Beers" (NOT).
  2. Funny - just thinking the same thing! Might I suggest waiting until next August for the big meteor shower. I like the Adams fly pattern in size 14 hook. A good strongly hopped home brew will fit the bill. Currently I have a MB Winter Dark Ale for tonight, but the snow and sleet will preclude stargazing and fly fishing. Actually - I enjoy astronomy and have built my own telescope. Fly fishing is also a passion of mine shared by my older son. Since I retired, I've been very involved in my hobbies and enjoying brewing again . Aside from brewing, fly fishing and astronomy, I enjoy sailing (fair weather), amateur radio, guitar and competitive archery. We (wife and I) also enjoy hiking, skiing, camping and I am Scout leader. How I ever had time to work (39 years as a science teacher in New York City) is beyond me.
  3. I agree that US-05 is cleaner - but I like the sweet malty taste, and perhaps a hint of pepper
  4. I liked the MB Nut Brown ale - I thought it was very good (but i can't remember if I added any malt or hops to the basic recipe). If I remember correctly. it was "lighter" (color and body) than expected, but the flavors were there. Last year I made an all grain version, which was really excellent. Not sure which yeast I used, but lately US-04 has been my favorite - just a good, all around ale yeast. YMMV
  5. Just looked up Windsor low flocculation. Interesting that cold crashing did not help much.
  6. BTW just to add to my previous post - NEVER use a sponge! Paper towel for all cleaning and dispose of before moving onto a new surface.
  7. After a while sanitizing becomes part of the routine. I go so far as to sanitize the stove top, back splash and range hood. I also completely do the sink, faucet and handles, and of course all the counter tops and cabinet pulls. Sounds excessive, but I also bake bread occasionally and I don't want those other yeast around. All equipment gets a good dunk, and like a surgeon, I set up a sterile field. Don't forget your hands! Downstairs where I store my keg and bottles, the plastic table-top gets a good wipe down too. BTW - your spouse will love you for the extra clean kitchen!
  8. Congratulations. I'm not a fan of mead, but it does seem appealing. Interesting recipe and process.
  9. Rafts of yeast can be "normal" Leave it alone until fully fermented (I usually let it sit 20 days or so). Dark spots also seem to appear from time to time during fermentation. Don't keep opening up the keg, as you risk letting some nasty bacteria in. Your risk causing infection with the thermometer is low, opening the keg increases the risk. BTW a stick-on thermometer works well.
  10. Brewed my FREE MB WDA yesterday (expiration Nov 2019). What a monster fermentation after just 24 hours. Looking forward to a really yummy beer. Have not brewed in a few months, but now is the season!
  11. I misunderstood - I thought it was odd to boil or sanitize the vanilla (guess my brain had a disconnect). Yea - clean the measuring spoon, and all is good.🙄
  12. Are you adding vanilla extract? If so, I would expect that it is fine (usually is in an alcohol base). A measuring spoon well washed in hot water or from the dishwasher should be OK. I would open the lid minimally, just enough to slip the spoon in, then close right away. The risk of infection is low. If you are worried, boil as Creeps McLane suggested, but boiling such a small volume might prove difficult. Microwaving boiling such a small volume might turn it into a very viscus goop. Another approach might be to dilute the vanilla in a cup of water and boil that.
  13. Year old yeast is questionable. Go with the MB yeast that was under the lid. You can always add the US-04 if there is no fermentation within a day or so. Even if half the yeast are no longer viable - there are plenty left to get the fermentation started. Lag time might be a little longer. WDA always seems to have a vigorous fermentation.
  14. Drink beer (or two) rinse well with hot water and dish soap. Before brewing sanitize with oxygen cleaner. Same for plastic bottles.
  15. I observed some caps that had a definite convex curve after a few weeks of carbonation. I think the pressure was enough to deform the cap, breaking the seal allowing the beer to vent. Once the pressure decreased, it formed a seal again.
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