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Everything posted by Nathan08

  1. Good stuff guys. I took a sample before bottling and half way through to make sure that it wasn't trub in the spigot. There is indeed trub at the bottom of the LBK. I thought along the same lines. I am going to let it sit for 4-6 weeks and see how it tastes after that.
  2. Advice required: Another update... for those who have been following, I brewed American Porter that had passed its expiry date. The process was slow, with visible signs of fermentation starting after 3 days, and high krausen happening very late... after a week or more. I bottled this batch today, and there was still a light layer on top of the beer. It is like the entire process is proceeding in slow motion. Temp held at 68 for the full three weeks. So, I decided to give it a small taste while bottling. I have never had American Porter before, but I can tell you, it did not taste good. I tried to nail down the taste... cardboard? No... I read that can happen but I don't think that was it (Although I have never eaten cardboard). My wife however, hit the nail on the head. It tasted very yeasty, and left a strong undesirable yeast aftertaste. Any thoughts on this? I am on batch 9 and am yet to have a bad batch so I have been lucky, and it was bound to happen. Any thoughts on that aftertaste would be appreciated. I finished bottling it anyway and am going to condition it. On the bright side, I bottled/tried my Bewitched Amber Ale (2nd round of this stuff) yesterday and it was better than the first time I did it A fantastic brew.
  3. Update: We are three days into the process. Last night it was still doing nothing (2 days in) This afternoon I checked on it again and there is an ok layer of bubbles and trub at the bottom. I don't know what caused it to take 2 days to begin visibly fermenting, but it seems to be doing its thing now. More updates to follow.
  4. Hello again everyone! I have read a few posts about expired kits, but I thought I would throw this on here anyway, as it is my first time brewing American Porter so I don't have any experience to go by. Basically, the store near me is no longer going to carry Mr. Beer products, so they had a big sale. I picked up six kits for a very good price, two of which were expired (Early 2015 I think): Bewitched Amber Ale and American Porter. For the price I paid, I figured, "why not try". I started both kits each in their own 8L LBK. I have brewed Bewitched Amber Ale before and after 2 days. it is progressing along just like last time. As for my Porter brew, I am 24 hours into the process, and it doesn't appear to be doing anything at all. The yeast looks to be sitting on the top. No bubbles, no temp change (sitting at room temp). Could my yeast no longer be good? I am going to give it another 48 hours to see what it does. Anyone brew Porters before? Does it usually take very long to get to high krausen? If nothing happens after another 2 days, is it salvageable, or should I just dump it at that point and move on to a non-expired kit? As always, any info would be greatly appreciated.
  5. After taxes of course :p. Though I do enjoy the price in case of emergencies and whatnot. My wife gave birth to two kids in hospital and had a private room. My bill that my tax dollar and coverage didn't cover: 15$. But, wait times if you don't have a family doc (which we are lucky to have in our rural area) can be long. But I am off topic. Thanks for the advice guys! I am going to check the Mr. Beer outlet in town and then a second brew store down the line.
  6. Question for the international buyers, especially for the Canucks on Mr. Beer (or anyone really). I live in Nova Scotia, but have a store near by that sells Mr. Beer supplies (basic refills and some supplies, LBKs, bottles, stuff like that). I am not sure what they sell for hops, LMEs and DMEs, so I thought I would check on the Mr Beer site. I was interested in brewing Horse's Ass, but my store only has basic refills (as mentioned). No worries, I thought. I can get the Classic American Light refill at my local store, I just need the Cascade Pellet Hops and the Muslin Hops Sack, both of which cost about $2.50US on the Mr. Beer site (or 3 and some change in Canuck dollars... or three loonies if you will). Then I got to shipping... 33USD for 3 bucks worth of Hops and a sack. I imagine that they must have a flat rate for international shipping. Is this the case? Anyone on here know? Is there a way around it? If not, any suggestions for someone who has never bought hops before? Is it possible to buy these specific hops through other brewing stores or does it have to come directly from Mr. Beer? I have never purchased hops before so this is new territory for me. Any advice would be appreciated.
  7. I have a buddy that got me into it. It is nice to have someone around to talk about brews with and to taste-test as well
  8. As a guy who has brewed a grand total of 10 batches of beer (still lots to learn), I can say the following: 1. You are going to have a million questions. This forum is a great place to ask them 2. You are going to do little things wrong and need reassurance. You can get that here. 3. I have asked questions on this forum enough times to know that the people here all love the hobby and are happy to help. 4. Look up the links on RickBeer's posts and read them all 5. This forum compliments the hobby very well. Enjoy!
  9. Patience is indeed the key. I found that to be the hardest part when I started my first few batches. I would check on the LBK a gazillion times a day, and then be itching to get into the bottles once carbonated. But I learned to leave the beer to do its thing. Patience pays off
  10. I agree with you all. I am also a fan of stocking up. I purchased a second LBK this year so that I could brew two batches at a time. I am far from being a big producer, but I would like to get 8 of the 2 gallon batches done by the end of June so that I don't have to brew and worry about temperature when the weather gets too hot. I can always pick it up again in the fall once things cool down.
  11. I agree with that I don't know what I would have done without this forum. Such a great tool, and it does compliment the hobby very well. Lots of great folk on here.
  12. Been there, did that, wrote this forum about it and mine turned out fine as well. To avoid this problem, tear the wet lable off before dumping the contents of the can.
  13. Thanks everyone! Looking forward to reading up and uping my brewing game.
  14. Good to know about the malt. I never thought about adding hops. Can you mix and match different hops with different refills or are there specific ones that go with each brew? I noticed that there is a description of each one on the Mr. Beer site as to what it goes with so i assume that different hops can be added to different refills to yield different results. Feel free to correct me if I am wrong.
  15. Anyone out there like Diablo? I have brewed 5 different batches from the "standard refill" series and am now looking to try something different. So... is it any good? Any suggestions for refills that anyone has enjoyed? I am not looking for a particular taste, just looking to try the various refills, so I am open to suggestions. Also, are deluxe refills worth a go? The difference, from what I can tell, is the addition of LME.
  16. Based on my own experience, I find that the glass bottles carbonate better than the plastic ones do. I brewed 3 batches in plastic before switching over and carbonation improved as soon as I did.
  17. lol he is close. The basement (at 61F at night) worried me. Curse these Canadian winters! I decided that, since the microwave cubby was open, that I would take the kitchen, which is always between 66-68F. It is also too high for little hands to get at. I just finished brewing one batch of American Lager and one of Classic American Light, while sipping away at my favourite (excuse my Canuck spelling) non-homemade brew, Alexander Keith's, a local beer that is brewed about 1.5 hours from here. Cheers everyone!
  18. I made this exact same error with a batch last year. About 20 mins after pitching my yeast into a batch of Oktoberfest, I had to unscrew my cover and stir (gently) with a sanitized spoon. The batch turned out just fine. I cannot remember if it was Rickbeer that said this, but he gave me lots of advice so I am giving him credit for it: -- yeast has been finding sugar to ferment alcohol for a very ong time. The yeast will find the sugar.
  19. I checked the basement temp last night at around 2am (was up with one of my little guys.) Ambient temp at night was 61F. I will either put it in a cooler, or use the cubbie for the microwave (just slid the microwave to the counter as the plug in the cubbie keeps tripping out.). Either way, I am ready to go! Going to get two batches going tonight or tomorrow night.
  20. LBK reading 63 in the basement presently. I was under the impression that under 64 was too cold? Is 63F too low?
  21. Good to know. I figured that it wouldn't be enough to bother anything, but I am not brewing until tomorrow night, so I figured I would check to see if anyone had thoughts on the subject. Thanks for the info!
  22. Agreed, In fact, I have found that all of my brews taste even better the longer I leave them (beyond 4 weeks conditioning). Just the same, I was just as eager to get into my first brew as well. What kind of bottles did you use (plastic or glass?) When I started, I used plastic only, but switched over to glass bottles after a few batches. If you have plastic and can get cheap glass bottles on sale, go for it. The taste is noticeably better. Congrats on your success!
  23. Hello fellow brewers! It has been about 7-8 months since my last post! Life has been busy unfortunately, too busy to brew a whole lot. I completed 3 different brews successfully in 2015, and owe at least part of my success to this forum, so "cheers" to all of the contributors! Today's question is as follows: Has anyone ever stored their LBK on top of their fridge during their 3-week fermentation stage? My split-level house only has one heating zone (the whole house) and the thermostat is in the kitchen on the main level. I would like to set up in the basement, but when the main level of the house is set to 20C (68F), the basement can be up to 2C cooler, especially during the winter at mid-day when I have sunshine beaming through the bay window, heating the main floor. This keeps the furnace from coming on as often, thus the difference in temp between the basement and the main level/upper level can be significant. Long story short, the main floor is the best place to brew temp wise, as it holds at a steady 68F. The problem I have is my youngest child, who is 18 months, gets into everything. When my oldest was 2 (when I started brewing) he was a quiet child who left everything alone, thus I could leave the LBK under a blanket in a corner of the kitchen. Now, with my youngest being mobile and curious, I don't dare leave it out in the open. I have two places on the main level where I could put the keg: 1. On top of my wife's harpsichord (if it were to explode or make a mess there, I might as well sign my death certificate ) 2. On top of the fridge. But is that wise? After all, the fridge does vibrate a little bit when it runs. I thought of laying down a thick blanket underneath the LBK in order to absorb the light vibration, but I am still not sure. Has anyone done this? Or, has anyone figured out a good way to keep a LBK out of the reach of small curious hands?
  24. Update: Since for this batch I already had not followed the directions to the letter, I decided to try one after three weeks so that i could then compare the taste to a brew after 4 weeks. With my last two batches, I found that they tasted even better after 5-6+ weeks of sitting at room temp. My last two batches (American classic and Oktober Fest) were good, but I still found they tasted ever-so-slightly sweet... barely noticeable. Anyway, I cracked one of the Bewitched Amber Ales that I thought I had ruined and to be honest, it is my favourite brew to date. It tastes great; would definitely buy that at a liquor store. I will for sure be making this one again. Thanks again to everyone who quickly convinced me not to toss this batch!
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