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Everything posted by Shrike

  1. For a two gallon batch, whisking it vigorously before pitching the yeast is sufficient.
  2. The yeast are still going to tear through the sugars in the honey, regardless of whether it was added to the boil or pasteurized and added directly to the LBK.
  3. I turn and press again. Here's a tip for capping: put a wet dish towel on the counter where you'll be capping. It'll keep the bottles from trying to slide out from under the capper.
  4. 1/2 tsp is what I use for 12oz bottles.
  5. Shrike

    Adding honey

    Here's a post from last December in response to someone asking about increasing ABV. There are many ways to do it, such as using Booster (adds ABV, doesn't affect taste), adding Liquid or Dry Malt Extract (LME or DME), adding different varieties of sugars, and mashing grains (these last three methods will all affect the taste).
  6. Shrike

    Adding honey

    What are you trying to gain? There may be other options to achieve it...but without knowing what you want we can't provide much advice.
  7. Shrike

    Adding honey

    Add some ABV and dry it out a little. Honey does not make a beer have any honey flavor, it adds a dry character.
  8. Not here. Search is still not working properly, nor does trying to find some products through the menus. I went 20th Century-style today and phoned my order in.
  9. I'm still having issues trying to order. I can view my cart but there's no option to go to checkout.
  10. I did not care for the final result when I made it. Brown sugar can add a flavor that some people taste as licorice. If I were to brew it again I'd follow the instructions but only use 1/2 cup of light brown sugar.
  11. I was getting errors with trying to order on Monday. Used the online form to ask for help and got no response. As MRB customer service is usually on the ball I figured something was up.
  12. Seconded. And if nothing else you'll have a good liquid in which to boil bratwurst.
  13. Go three weeks fermenting, bottle, then four weeks carbonating at room temperature.
  14. Biloxi. You planning a road trip?
  15. Rick's new sobriquet should be "The Beer Detective". 😄
  16. Yep, you had yeast rafts. No need to apologize about all the questions. You're going through what everyone on here has gone through, an acute case of B.B.A.: Beginner Brewer Anxiety.
  17. Here's what an infection looks like: Or this: Or this: There are lots more examples. Just DuckDuckGo "Infected Beer Fermenter" and you'll get plenty of photos. Compare those to this example featuring tons of yeast rafts:
  18. What temperature are the bottles sitting at while carbonating? It's recommended to do a full three weeks at room temperature, meaning around 70-75F, to completely carb your brews. If it's cooler than that, it'll take longer. I've never used the drops. I've always used sugar. Now I stick with Domino's Dots. 1 sugar cube = 1/2 tsp. I use one for 12oz bottles and two for pint and 500ml bottles. Simple and fool-proof.
  19. One thing to consider when adding LME is that the balance of maltiness vs. hoppiness in the final product will be shifted a tad towards malty. To counter this, some people will add a bit of hops at flameout or boil them for a few minutes. Tettnanger, Saaz, or Hallertau are three varieties that complement the style.
  20. Grains are steeped around 155F for 1/2 hour in water, then the grains are removed. Then the water is brought to a boil and removed from heat. Only then is the HME stirred in. Check out the instructions here for a popular recipe called Black Beer'd Porter. MRB walks you through it step-by-step.
  21. For the 1776 recipe, the can of American Lager is the HME which as Rick said is Hopped Malt Extract. It's the same stuff as LME except the malt had hops added before reducing. As a side note, LME and DME can be boiled but HME should not as it can change the hop portion of it in undesirable ways.
  22. @StretchNM, don't get discouraged; it sounds like you've got some of the important basics down from the very beginning - sanitation and temperature control. You're already making beer that's "not bad at all", so you're ahead of where I was when I started. Some of the recipes that use only extract just need a little time to hit their stride. I let mine carbonate/condition at room temperature until the minimum recommended conditioning time. Then I put one in the fridge and drink it three days later. If it tastes good, I'll put a couple more in the fridge. But anything that I'm not going to enjoy in a few days stays out at room temperature. They get better with age. As far as head retention, as Rick said, extract-only beers don't have much head. To help with this, I steep four-six ounces of grains (a combination of carapils and two-row) with every extract-only batch I make. They help with mouthfeel and head retention. Once you've got a few batches under your belt and have the process down, you'll be ready to start adding grains. It's not a steep learning curve (pun definitely intended); if you can make tea and read a thermometer you already have the necessary skills to steep/mash grains. Oh, and welcome to the hobby and the forum. There's a ton of great information here (RickBeer's signature block alone contains a wealth of knowledge) that'll help you make beers that you'll be proud to share with friends and family.
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