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Everything posted by Nickfixit

  1. I did, I wrote to customer service 😎. They would be right - it will be beer, but it could be better beer. However, I think if they specify some other temp range that requires other than just sitting the LBK in the kitchen, they will discourage sales.
  2. If you were going to build this on a MR Beer HME - what would you suggest? I was thinking American Light or Canadian Blonde would take more IBU additions for the character Cluster/Mt Hood Hop additions and the PM grains. So maybe the American Light plus a pack of Smooth LME (Victory and Crystal sub.), 1 oz 6 row + 4 oz Flaked Corn + 1.5 oz Carafa -II PM, then the hops. 0.5 oz Cluster 15 min and 0.25 oz Mt Hood 5 min (and take them out? or not?) gets pretty close, ABV 4.83, IBUs 19.3, SRM 13.2. But I am not sure how the flavor will be.
  3. Talking of fermentation temps , I was looking at the "Craft Week" Recipes Mr. B has this week, and noticed that all of them say ferment between 70 and76 deg. Seems a little warm for some of them. I am thinking it is just a boilerplate number not catered to the recipe/yeasts - which is a bit disappointing. I am especially intrigued by the Pennsylvania Lager, but I am thinking even for S-04, 70-76 may be a bit high especially as Fermentis says "ideally 15-20°C (59-68°F)." And this is the Wort temp not ambient. I think I will just keep it at my cellar temp of 62-64 ambient.
  4. What? the haze is from OATs not HOPs? I have been misled. You are right , the oat starch can lead to infections but so far I have not had any and at times have used oats, flaked wheat or oat/wheat mix with no issues, and note that some brewers add flour to brews to get cloudiness. But then I only have 2 gal to lose :-). I saw one recipe that had like 3 lbs of oats in a 5 gal IPA. (AG so no starch issue) - that is HUGE - like thin hoppy oatmeal lol. Maybe there would be a market for Oat extract (50% Oat/50% Barley, similar to the wheat extracts)? I would also add that a Steeped bag of flaked oats or wheat is REALLY tough to rinse out and tends to make starch glue. So addition of barley malt and rice hulls really helps tone it down a bit and let it drain - but still tough to rinse out. The last one I did (Lemon Drop Saison) used 4 oz Flaked wheat, with 4 oz Vienna Malt Grain. 4 oz Pils malt and that rinsed OK.
  5. That said, I do have a 2 gal fermenter with a krausen collar. I much prefer the LBKs for ease of use so I do not use it much. I do not find I have a problem with trub/bits (That I am aware of anyway). If there is a lot floating I will rock the LBK to wet them a few days before bottling and it all will have settled by then.
  6. I have stored them them at ~ 62 (basement floor) and the dark ones have survived (opened with vodka, and unopened) for a couple of years beyond the date on the can. So you do not have to refrigerate, I think, if they can stay cool. Lighter malts may darken up but they should still ferment. See my post on making 3 dark ales in LBKs using up old malts. (That was a Cooper's Dark Ale can. BTW that is a very nice HME. Even standard recipe it come out like a Mild Ale.) The LBK size is why I use 3. - 2 gal each 🙂
  7. Eeew - just another thing to wash. 😎
  8. Yes. I split Cooper's 6 gal kits at regular intervals among 3 LBKs and they are each different beers with maybe different yeasts, hops and malt additions. I use only small pans and never have he 6 gal at once in any container and it has worked out fine for me. The last one was a Dark ale, that was the same additions in each except different yeast and totally different tasting out comes. For others - e.g. I did this ….. 1/3 Cooper's Pilsener HME + 8 oz pils malt + 6 oz booster + 0.5 oz Saaz flameout aroma hop. Ferment below 68 deg with 1/3 supplied yeast + 1/3 37/40 1/3 Cooper's Pilsener HME + 8 oz pils malt + 6 oz booster + 8 oz pils malt PM, 0.5 oz Saaz boil 15 min and remove , 0.5 oz Saaz flameout aroma hop leave in. Ferment below 68 deg with 1/3 supplied yeast + 1/3 37/40 1/3 Cooper's Pilsener HME + 8 oz pils malt + 6 oz booster + 8 oz pils malt + 2 oz Cara 20 PM, 0.5 oz Saaz boil 15 min and remove , 0.5 oz Saaz flameout aroma hop leave in. 0.5 Saaz Dry Hop Ferment below 68 deg with 1/3 supplied yeast + 1/3 37/40 You get your LBKS sterilized and ready with the 1 gall of cold water. You can put maybe 6 cups of water in a pan, bring to near boil and dissolve the Cooper's HME. Split the mixture 3 ways into the LBKs with a ladle. Then you can do the rest of each fermentable additions and hop treatments separately as if they were Mr Beer mixes, and add them to the target LBKs. There is no reason you have to put it all in together. If you want to be "clever" you may save time by combining the additions and splitting them off at various points to the LBKs. but it needs some planning. Just make sure you keep the lids on the LBKs any time you are not adding stuff.
  9. I edited the recipe above, but there are a lot of options that will work. Water for steep? - enough to just cover the bag. I heat water to 170 in my kettle and pour it over the bag. It cools to about 155. Then I keep it covered over the "warming" burner on the stove and check temp every so often and swish the liquid around. Make liquid up? I have a mental mark on my pot that I boil and dissolve extracts in so I top it up to there from my kettle. I wrote that incorrectly, I usually make it up to 4 cups before I boil the hops to make sure it does not boil dry. you will also get more hoppiness that way. somewhere about 4-6 cups is OK, does not have to be exact. Malts will dissolve and pour easier if in more water, but the wort in LBK will be a little hotter when you add it so you should check before pitching yeast. The boiling of 2nd hops is just to sterilize so not important how much water. You could actually do that before adding the malts if you wanted, But you do not want it in there while dissolving, hop bags get in the way of stirring. I hope you like it when you make it. This is a recipe I converted from an All Grain one in my LHBS.
  10. AHBA Big Brew day - any other participant events? Will make Lemon Drop Saison at Old Bust Head Brewery in Vint Hill, VA. Lemon drop etc Saison. Steep 4 oz Flaked wheat, with 4 oz Vienna Malt Grain. 4 oz Pils malt crushed. 30 min at 165. Strain and rinse. Boil 0.5oz Lemon Drop hops in bag 10 min in grain liquor wort. Remove hop bag to fermenter. Make liquid up to ~ 4 cups then dissolve 1 pack Mr B Golden LME and 6 oz booster Bring to boil and add 0.5 oz Lemon Drop hops in bag, let sit a couple mins to sterilize then take off heat & move hops to fermenter. Dissolve Czech Pils HME on hot wort, . Add to cold water in LBK, top up to line. ferment with Belle Saison dry hop with 0.5 oz Lemon Drop for last 7 days. Target ABV ~ 4.8% IBUs 27 (from HME) + 10 from late hop boil --> 37 IBUs Original recipe uses total 1oz hop bittering 4 oz late and dry in 5 gal. So this may be a little more bitter. Last brew I was cautious on hops so used only 1 oz rather than the 2. (scaled) It was good but more is OK, but still cautious so only using 1.5 not 5 (scaled).
  11. Bottling the Cooper's Dark Ale + leftover Dark LMEs and HBC438 hop all in similar wort - being a split up 6 gal brew with different yeasts One with S-33 yeast. Minot film on surface, Tastes pretty dry roasty, a little warming, spicy peppery finish. One with Windsor yeast. Clear surface, Sweeter, more rounded than S-33 brew, a little warming, not peppery. Tomorrow the last one - different yeast again- S-04
  12. I have used it too. If you use half, pitch a little vodka on top of the remaining LME before you seal it up to ensure it stays sterile while waiting for the next batch..
  13. Generally, I buy the HMS and booster from Mr Beer, the DME and bags, Milled grains for PM and yeast from the LHBS.
  14. My LHBS also seems to be thriving and works with an active home brewers club and local breweries.
  15. I mate the caps up with the bottles when I sanitize them, put sanitizer in the bottle hold the cap on it and then invert the bottle letting a little sanitizer get out and over the top of the bottle and around the bottle/cap seal area. Then I stand the pair up to sit for the 10 min. Then when I fill them I have the caps right there. I have a bench capper but I don't wash it - it does not contact any beer related surfaces.
  16. $10 aquarium or "ray gun" thermometer is battery operated with digital readout. But it may not be more accurate, it just implies that it is 😎 I did have the $1.95 (now on sale for $1.45!!) stick on one but the readability faded on me.
  17. Yes I see now - some menus do not show pics etc.
  18. If you have a Meat Refrigerator Pool Oven you can use this - it goes way high up there.
  19. I have used ones like this at work, but $11.99? That is a REAL bargain. Maybe I will get one 😄 No wait - $10.99 and FREE ship[ping!
  20. Better to get a $10 aquarium digital thermometer and tape it on, then you get actual degrees.
  21. Why would the French attack Mr Beer? Oh wait, You are attacking their wine market now...……………… Not serious, but there has to be some reason DDOS is just to mess with you, not like it is scouting your customer database. Although you may get that too. Time to get the FBI or whoever. Probably someone took over a French computer to do that.
  22. When you use tired old yeast, would it be better to make a starter? Talking of yeasts, there was an interesting comment on effect of rapid temperature change on yeast from one manufacturer data sheet I read (Lallemand). On reconstituting yeast, they wanted you to do it at 85-95 deg. then cool gradually to wort temp 5 min per 10 deg, using small amounts of cool wort.. Their assertion was not that the cells got killed, but that rapid temp changes cause UNWANTED MUTATIONS, potentially causing off flavors. I usually just sprinkle it onto the wort though it seems to work but I am not sure of the impact on the yeast rehydration process - and how much better my beer would be if I followed their process. ***************************************************** Some Yeast Facts ***************************************************** Lallemand data sheets are interesting to me, for example they illustrate difference between the yeasts and why they behave differently. Why choice of yeast affects beer sweetness and attenuation. e.g. London which they say will not eat maltotriose sugar, leading to the sweeter beers, "London does not utilize the sugar maltotriose (a molecule composed of 3 glucose units). Maltotriose comprises an average of 10-15% of total sugar in all-malt worts. The result will be fuller body and residual sweetness in the beer. Be advised to adjust gravities and mash temperatures according to desired result. " https://www.lallemandbrewing.com/en/canada/product-details/london-esb-english-style-ale-yeast/ (If you pick the yeast in Brewers Friend calculator it does this compensation for yeast sugar usage for you.) or Belle Saison which they say is a variety diastaticus. "Saccharomyces cerevisiae var. diastaticus strains are capable of utilizing some types of dextrins. Extra care should be taken to ensure proper cleaning procedures are in place to avoid any cross-contamination with other brews. " https://www.lallemandbrewing.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/TDS_LALBREW_PREM_BELLESAISON_ENGLISH_DIGITAL.pdf I put some by accident in a brew of Sticky Wicket stout and it was very dry tasting. Choice of yeast affects Dry Hopping Also they describe the different effects for dry hopping incising different yeasts. Some yeasts produce chemicals that accentuate hop flavor. https://www.lallemandbrewing.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/LAL-bestpractices-Biotransformation-digital-1.pdf This is a fascinating paper detailing effect of various hops and transformation of the desired flavors, and includes the use of coriander as a source of chemicals for yeast transformation into similar flavors. Don't be put off by the chemistry speak, skim to find the conclusions (unless you are chemistry geek lol). https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1002/j.2050-0416.2010.tb00428.x Quote Rehydration guidelines are quite simple and present a much lower risk of contamination than a starter, which is unnecessary when using the recommended pitch rate of dried active yeast. Sprinkle the yeast on the surface of 10 times its weight in clean, sterilized water at 30-35°C (86-95F). Do not use wort, or distilled or reverse osmosis water, as loss in viability may result. Stir gently, leave undisturbed for 15 minutes, then stir to suspend yeast completely. Leave it to rest for 5 more minutes at 30-35°C. Without delay, adjust the temperature to that of the wort by mixing aliquots of wort with the rehydrated yeast. Wort should be added in 5 minute intervals and taking care not to lower the temperature by more than 10°C at a time. Temperature shock of >10°C will cause formation of petite mutants leading to extended or incomplete fermentation and possible formation of undesirable flavors. Do not allow attemperation to be carried out by natural heat loss. This will take too long and could result in loss of viability or vitality. Inoculate without delay into cooled wort in the fermenter. Belle Saison yeast has been conditioned to survive rehydration. The yeast contains an adequate reserve of carbohydrates and unsaturated fatty acids to achieve active growth. It is unnecessary to aerate wort upon first use.
  23. It may be carbonated adequately at 2 weeks, but the 4 weeks gives the yeast more time to clean up any off flavors. And be patient, give it 3 days in the fridge before opening it for best results - this impacts proper absorption of the carbonation. If you are really impatient, put several in and you can hopefully see the difference over the few days. If you see no difference I guess it won't matter for you.
  24. For the Mr Beer with partial mash, I use water about 165 or 170 deg (my kettle does that ) and it come out in the pot in the 145-155 range generally. Then I sit it on the warming ring on the stove. IT will stay between 140-160 - not really accurate for careful all grain work, but I think for my PM it seems to work.
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