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Everything posted by MichaelL

  1. Welcome to the forum and to the hobby. Stick with it and you will surely brew some great beer.
  2. Staggerback Stout is a personal favorite, easy to brew and very very good. Also, I've made some nice IPAs using Diablo as a base.
  3. Agree completely with the Gonzo Dr. The amounts on the MrBeer carbing chart are rather high. Cut them back by 25% or so and you'll be in good shape.
  4. You're welcome! It's rather astounding that a simple post about a favorite beer can have such an effect. Is this a great forum or what? Maybe I shouldn't mention that Long Trail brews an even maltier ale called Triple Bag? That one's classified as an American Strong Ale and clocks in at around 11% ABV. And I definitely shouldn't mention that it's even better than its little brother ...
  5. Had another one of those the other day. Still good! Your recipe looks good. How does the beer taste?
  6. Nothing wrong with this at all. Go for it!
  7. Hmm. My wife's from St Cloud, which is not all that far from the Cities. Maybe I can convince her to visit her family while I take in the conference.
  8. Need more votes, come on people! No consensus yet, except on the aroma hops, but with only four votes ...
  9. Well, there is just such a place here in Nashua, NH. IncrediBrew is the oldest currently-operating BOP business in the US and seems to be doing very well as strictly BOP. Of course, they've got over 15 years in business and have built up a loyal customer base. They also offer wine and soda making on site to supplement the brewing side. I brewed there for years before switching to homebrewing, and still occasionally take advantage of a special offer to use their facility. The business is still going strong; a local news program has been filming there all week for segments to be airing next week. I certainly agree that a startup these days probably has to offer what you mention to survive long-term, but these guys have made their business model work for awhile.
  10. Fermenting too warm will cause the yeast to create off flavors, in particular a "green apple" flavor. Keeping the wort temp at 65 or below will help prevent this. @MiniYoda's suggestions for keeping things cool are right on. My basement stays pretty cool, but in the summer the temperature hits around 70. At that point I keep the LBK in a cooler with two bottles of frozen water that I change out a couple of times each day. This works out very well for me. Of course, you could always go for a more elaborate system with a fridge and a temperature controller, but that's not necessarily a requirement unless you're looking to brew lagers (which need to ferment much cooler than ales).
  11. Making it straight up the first time is never a mistake. Once you get a taste of the base refill, then you can consider how to augment it. If you add hops and/or malt the first time, you won't know if you liked or disliked it because of the NWPA itself or because of what you added. Good luck and good brewing!
  12. Welcome back my friend to the show that never ends! We're so glad you could attend, come inside come inside! Good to see our resident Ewok back. We missed you around here.
  13. Down to my last bottle of a Black IPA I made using Diablo HME, 1 oz of Centennial hops, and 4 oz each of Black Malt and Caapils (wanted to use 1/2 lb of Amber DME for a bit of additional kick and color but spaced it during brewing ... next time for sure!). Came out very well and I'm looking to make it again sometime, probably replacing the Centennial hops with Cascade. The Gila Monster looks like something I might want to try sometime. Have everything on hand except the hops ... tempting, indeed!
  14. A little late here, but I second the Sarge's recommendation of the Screwy Brewer calculator for bottle priming. Very useful indeed.
  15. Darn! I have the last of my supply conditioning in bottles now, should be ready to drink in a week or so. Kicked it up a notch or two with Munich malt and Fuggles hops. Your recipe, as always, looks intriguing. Keep us posted on the results!
  16. I picked up the same kit (same date on the can as well!) at a flea market for the same price a couple of years ago. I actually tried making the beer, but it was pretty bad. Still use the LBK, though, and have never had a problem with the old-school spigot. Still, who could pass up the chance to get one of the spiffy new ones? Great find by your wife.
  17. That looks really good, B&B! You create such interesting recipes, and I think this might turn out to be one of your best.
  18. For some reason, this comes to mind:
  19. From #8 to nowhere in two weeks ... how the mighty have fallen. Yeah, it's a down year for the Spartans. I think that even Michigan might be able to beat them this time around, but I hold out hope that Coach Dantonio can rally the troops in time to salvage something from this mess.
  20. Rick, Rick, Rick: You can denigrate MSU when your Weasels ... I mean, Wolverines ... actually beat them. You know, like Wisconsin did last week (it was painful to watch, but I must tip my cap to the excellent effort by the Badgers). Alas, given the state of the Spartan football team this year, I'd have to say that it's likely that you guys will whomp on them this year. Still, I stand behind the Spartans and will cheer them on regardless of the results. By the way, welcome to the forums, WisconsinBadger! Go Green!
  21. Diablo is good on its own, and a great base for some adventurous IPA-brewing. I've made it with Cascade hops (a 30-minute boil, if I remember, followed by dry-hopping using 1 oz of hops total, evenly split) which was excellent. Most recently, I made a Black IPA using 4 oz of Black Malt and another 1 oz of added hops, this time Centennial. This came out quite well, although I definitely prefer the flavor that Cascade brings to the beer. Next time I'll be continuing my tour of the "C" hops with some Columbus; not sure what malt I'll be using for the partial mash. All I have on hand is Munich, which might be an interesting addition. Might look for something else to play with before I make the brew. I also use carapils in all my brews for mouthfeel and head generation/retention. I'd be interested to know what you end up using with your Diablo and, some weeks down the road, how you liked it. One good thing (of the many!) about brewing IPAs is that they are best when "young," so that you can start drinking them a bit sooner than some other beers. 3 weeks of bottle conditioning (or even less, for the impatient) is enough.
  22. The Imperial Stout that I referenced earlier in this thread was brewed using 2 St Pat's HMEs, 1 lb of Amber DME, and a cup of dark brown sugar. Used Safale US-04 yeast and fermented at temps in the low 60s. I also took the precaution of loosening the lid on the LBK just a touch. With all that malt, there was a constant trickle of overflow for the first week or so of fermentation but, thankfully, nothing major. A low fermenting temperature is a must for a beast like this. Kept the LBK in a sturdy container with a towel to soak up the overflow and there was no real mess. Don't let the amount of malt in this recipe keep you from giving it a try if you'd really like to experience the beer!
  23. It was mmmarvelous! Thanks for asking. It's almost time to pop another in the fridge and see how things are progressing. Trying to ration these carefully, even more so since I lost one to a bottle bomb awhile back.
  24. I looked at this one, being a fan of Imperial Stouts and having made a rather less-ambitious version myself some six months ago (also based around 2 St Patrick's HMEs). However, the price point is simply too much for my brewing budget. Intriguing, but my money would be better spent on supplies for several batches. However, I hope some of our intrepid Forum members attempt this beast and share their results with us. Kudos to Josh for pushing the boundaries of what one can brew using HME.
  25. Good call! Having brewed up a 10-year-old refill once upon a time, only to have it turn out terrible, I heartily concur with your decision.
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