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Eric's Latest Mistake

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Posts posted by Eric's Latest Mistake

  1. This really sounds interesting, especially after having had a Xocoveza last week. A few years back I roasted some serrano peppers to kick up some of the Cerveza. Good idea, bad execution. The heat was too "forward." This sounds like the heat would be an undercurrent.

    Also, I had not thought about the physics of packing the hopsacks.  Every brewing experience is a learning experience.

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  2. Looks like a happy day in your future.  My batch of cold-fermented Baltic porter didn't last long enough to probably reach its true potential. I may have to steal back the ones sitting in my coworkers' fridge.  I'll leave him an IPA or a witbier instead. Its been there for months, taunting me.


    I've not done the barrel thing yet.  I'm not a bourbon fan but a clean barrel would impart some oak or smoke to it, wouldn't it? Of course I'd have to wait even longer enjoy it.


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  3. That recipe sounds like something to try or tweak, with one of my surplus Bavarians (Rural King closeout :)). I do appreciate the tip to wrap THE BEER in paper towel (saved an awkward conversation with Mrs. Mistake...)  So there's no BJCP category for Franken-beers? Here There Be Wheat Dragons? Abandon all Hop, Ye who go here?


    Seriuosly, thanks to all for hints, tips, tweaks, and FtLoGDDT!s

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  4. I use the Avery software/online tool (depending on what machine I'm on) and the small removable labels (4 x 8 to a sheet.) They stand up well to moisture and are easy to peel off when done. One sheet per LBK batch, with enough blanks that I can get my fourth batch or backs from the leftovers. Not that I'm cheap or anything <_<. I like the idea of labeling the outside of the box, as mine are generally by batch with some overflow. 

  5. My basement brew room stays reasonably cool (fermenting 68-70-ish) through the summer and turns over to lagers come winter. If I move an LBK to our garage or barn, I'll certainly get more heat but will the fluctuation through the day stress the yeast and give the "flop-sweat" esters / cat urine smell? Hey, if some of you more adventurous types use that as an adjunct, I won't judge...

    I've run a couple of saison batches to reasonable success (at least to me) but wondered if I was playing too safe with the temps. 

    Thanks, all, for the education and overall collaborative/coaching vibe of the community!

  6. It's clear you all have had some fun with this. I may have to dig in a bit. I've been very "just the facts, ma'am" with some small Avery labels. As a plus, they are easily removable and even pulled off some of the remaining original label that I fought with. They stand up to coolers, etc. and I can get at least a batch of fronts or backs (focused on ingredients and character) from a sheet. Maybe it's time I let the dogs run, so to speak. After all, my wife DID dub the next batch to bottle "Satan's @sscrack." Not a fan of boiling hops, is she?


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  7. I'm definitely picking up ideas here. Our local Rural King is clearing out their refills - two-packs for under $7. I've grabbed all the Weissbier/Pilsner they had out, as well as a couple of the Lager/Light. I wish they also had the Canadian, but I won't get greedy -- much! ? I've promised a repeat of the Wild Wheat for a friend, but have some honey and coriander for another, and now plenty of ideas to try. My son has promised a Porter HME that I'll work into the schedule as well, for fall.

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  8. Thanks, you've given me some more pieces of the puzzle. My hydrometer scale appears to be lined up with the ridge. I do measure before I pitch but not taking a temperature reading to figure into the equation. Assuming the OG on the recipe site was based on the volume in the instructions, it  should be the 8 or 8.5 qt of the LBK. Also potentially not fully in solution so my sample wouldn't reflect the true gravity. I think my primary concern was the conditioning time, so I might just factor in the longer wait time.

  9. My pipeline is not as rich as yours. I do print simple labels (name, brew/bottle/drinkable dates, ABV) for each bottle in the batch and have them mostly boxed by batch - short boxes that show the labels and bottles are accessible. They gradually move from floor up the shelf as their older brothers move to the fridge upstairs. No separate beer fridge for me ?  

    There may be 8-12 batches but geographically reasonable searches.

    I also put a label on a board with each new batch - part "trophy case," part log, and certainly more legible than my notebook with gravity, recipe tweaks, and aberrations.

  10. Thanks for your tutorial, as it differs slightly from what came with my hydrometer. I've had a few recipes start out with significant differences from what was listed on the website. I understand margin of error and getting cross-eyed at "is that 1.064 or 1.066?" It also makes sense that Final Gravity would have many more variables (temperature, how happy my yeast were, maybe even water quality) but what else goes into OG besides the water, malt, hops and any adjuncts?  Especially if it is an extract recipe, there don't seem to many moving parts to go wrong, assuming I put in all the ingredients.  If the end result tastes good, I'm not too concerned about ABV, but if my process is flawed, my end result may taste even better after correcting it.

    Thanks for helping all of us

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  11. This interwebs-thingy might catch on. Just think about all the mistakes I am avoiding. Back when I was in college, one of my friends said he used socks to strain his - I'm guessing for a grain boil, but still... :unsure: 


    Part of the ethos of this is the community - no real competition, at least not until you REALLY compete. Everyone shares their tips and their mistakes so we newcomers can make something we are proud of and enjoy. I will undoubtedly do something stupid somewhere along the line but I will 'fess up here (probably on the thread that says " this is not a good idea in the first place and why") to save the next newcomer.  Three years and 20+ nearly continuous batches and I am still learning every batch.


    So, if you're coming through southwest Ohio, give a yell and stop in for whatever is ready. 

    • Like 3

  12. On April 28, 2014 at 11:15 AM, RickBeer said:

    You said you would raise the front of the LBK when bottling.  Do that NOW, so the trub forms away from the nozzle to start with.  And, if you cold crash as ANR suggested, the trub will solidify and you'll get more out of the LBK before it hits the nozzle.

    What a good idea! I had just been using different bottles when I get down close to the end so I could easily pick out the ones that might be a bit "chewy." Going down now to shift my dunkel lager. Can I assume trub behaves the same, regardless of top- vs. bottom-fermenting?

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  13. I'm jumping in on this after it has sat for a while.  I'm skimming down the lists and learning much as I start to climb out of the kiddie pool.


    I'm not sure how your suspect batch turned out. I've done the same and probably worse but learn each time (thus I label them as Eric's Latest Mistake.) One of the things I really like about the Mr. Beer kits/recipes is that they really reduce the odds of horrible beer.  Right now drinking a Porter-ish, a "black & tan mishap." Guinness is not losing any sleep but a consumer base of one has its perks.


    All of that said, one of our local breweries, Urban Artifact, collect yeasts in the wild to identify and culture. They were very honest that some turned out like a diaper pail but others have been quite special. For now, I'll stick to a Saison yeast when I aim for that wildness.

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  14. THANK YOU for posting the archived recipes! I print the ones I make and annotate as I go but there are a couple that I really had my eye on and hadn't plunked for them yet - keeping my one LBK pretty busy. One further suggestion would be to add the descriptive text. The ones that I have made or noticed, I've got a good idea of their "character" but if I had an idea that I wanted to stretch a bit or was hunting for a certain special brew, the texts would help. Some of them are cute but then give a one line synopsis.

    Once I have the experience of some of you all, maybe I will be able to "read" the recipe to know which LME and hops will steer me where. Hopefully away from what my daughter described as "halfway between bacon and soap."

    Eric's Latest Mistake -

    Brewing: Cole Porter

    Aging: Saison du Miel, Belgian Christmas Ale

    • Like 2

  15. I'm jumping on this one. I just drank my last bottle of my first brew of it and it finally tasted like I had hoped. My daughter/co-taster described it early on as "halfway between bacon and soap," but after seeing the comments on translating  OG to conditioning time, I was way too impatient.


    I delayed and dropped the dewpoint dunkel deal (sorry but couldn't resist) so I am grabbing this and another from my wish list.


    Thanks to Mr. Beer folks and to the community for getting me on this adventure. Eric's Latest Mistake is definitely a family and friends endeavor and it will be nice to have some worthy efforts.

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