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Posts posted by Cato

  1. 5 minutes ago, Jdub said:

    hey @Cato i have an altbier grainbill loaded in BS. what kind of hops did you use and what schedule during boil? curious? i have hallertau blanc (60 min) and tettnang (15 min) in my recipe that i have yet to brew. wyeast german ale yeast.

    I used Centennial 60 min for my bittering and then Hallertau Blanc 15min. Turned out really well using that combo. I've never used Tettnang, so I know nothing on that hops characteristics.

    • Thanks 2

  2. Since I've got two pales conditioning and one amber/dark , Witch's Flight PM, about to bottle,  I checked my grains and I have enough for a 3 gal batch of Das Altbier, so  that will be next and then while ordering the yeast for it today I also ordered some Galaxy hops, (never tried Galaxy), and Mangrove Jack's M44 yeast . I'll do an LBK pale ale that I can fit in the fridge with the Alt.

    There's my plan for the next 3-4 weeks.


    • Like 1

  3. 1 hour ago, StretchNM said:

    To better understand "boil-off rate", please tell me if I have this right:

    - Boil 2 gallons for one hour

    - Let cool and measure remainder

    - Subtract remainder from 2 (gallons) (to get the loss)

    - Divide the loss by 2 (to bring  a 2-gal measurement to 1-gal)

    - That is the boil-off rate



    Don't overthink it @StretchNM! You boil your 2 gallons for an hour and it cools and you have 1.5 gal left then your boil off rate is .5 gal per hour. Now that you have that approx. rate per hour then next time you want to make a recipe that requires an hour boiling grains, LME, whatever then you know that you need to add an extra .5 gal to your kettle to compensate the loss.


    You can always boil longer if you over compensated, or if you find that you boiled off too much you can add some water back.


    I find it handy in Beersmith to check my gravity post boil before I pump into the fermenter. Beersmith will usually say something like my post boil should be 1.046 and so if I find that I'm at 1.033 I might dissolve a .5-.75 lb of LME  into the kettle and take another read before pumping into the fermenter. Of course if I'm on the money with BS or slightly above the post boil gravity I have no worry and proceed to pumping into the fermenter.


    At least use Qbrew to fill in those blanks if you're not using BS yet. Qbrew will be pretty close with you losses to boil off , hop additions, and trub loss.

    • Like 1
    • Thanks 1

  4. On ‎9‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 10:29 AM, RickBeer said:


    So here's a reinforcement of this principle.  Last week I tested my Apricot Wheat FG, a week after adding the 2nd can of apricots.  It was right on.  So I cold crashed it.  And, apparently forgot to write down the reading, or the temperature.  Not a big deal, I know it was in the 1.012 - 1.014 range, and would have been 64 degrees.  But, this reinforces WRITING EVERYTHING DOWN.

    I guess everyone has a different method to do it. Mine is I do a print out of my recipe from Beersmith and I write my notes on the paper print out like OG and FG and any amounts that I might have changed, LOL, like when I meant to add 8oz of LME and it came out too fast so 1lb. went in.


    Then I transfer those into my spreadsheet that I keep on the computer and in Google Drive.


    I like having that hard copy print out and keep 3 hard copy folders, one with current brews, one with recipes that I might want to tackle, and the third is informational and technical stuff that I run across and print out but seldom delve into.


    That being said I still chuckle when I clean out the old mail stuff from the counter in the kitchen and find stuff scribbled on a junk mail envelope like FG 1.012.

  5. I too use the unscented dish soap and rinse and wash each bottle as I drink it and leave it filled with the soapy water. Every 3 days or so I'll empty the 6-8 bottles on the kitchen counter and rinse them a couple times with hot water and then store them on my bottle tree. 


    I've never used a bottle brush or had any residue remaining. 


    I think my SS brewbuckets with the racking arm produce a bit less trub than my LBK's, but I'll have to check that out to verify.

  6. 3 hours ago, StretchNM said:


    Thanks @RickBeer. I think you pointed me to that program during my first all-grain brew. I used it and then couldn't remember what it was to use on this batch. I'll try it now to see how it compares to Creeps' results.


    ON EDIT: Ok I'm in the program. I have to go boil 2 gallons and see what my boil-off rate is. I did that before and now don't remember. I'm a piss-poor student



    Yeah, I'm all in as well on Beersmith. I have two different equipment profiles for two different sized kettles and fermenters. It's taken some tweaking to fine tune my boil rate on my induction burner, kettle loss, and trub loss in the fermenter but I'm real close these days to matching my numbers in BS. 


    One of my favs is adjusting my water chemistry to match the type of brew and i always use the same Deer Park spring water as I have its profile and ph stored in BS. 


    I think it's a great program and the scaling feature makes it easy to adjust batch sizes between my kettles and fermenters.

    • Like 3

  7. Ordered Pilsen, Maris Otter, Carapils, Nottingham yeast, and 5 or 6 different hops. Falconers Flight for a LBK of Witches Flight with some PM tweaks, and then some Willamete, Fuggles, EKG, and Styrian Celia for my attempt at St. Austells Tribute Pale Ale.


    For some reason I ordered some Galaxy hops with no recipe in hand but will figure out something.


    After that I think I'll make a 4-5 gal batch of Altbier just to keep a better stock amount than what I brewed for the German Stein comp.


    Still pretty hot for the AG brewing in the garage but I'm going to have to just deal with it.

    • Like 4

  8. Made it back home from Europe and have a lot to catch up on this coming week, but also need to plan a couple of brewing days in.


    I need to get a couple of batches going in the pipeline, so thinking one will be a LBK with a MRB PM,  likely using a BAA, maybe Witches Flight, and the other will be a 3 gal grain pale ale seeing if I can brew a semblance to that delicious Tribute PA I had on the flight back.

    • Like 1

  9. 8 hours ago, kurtpepp3 said:

    Thanks for the help. There are no leaks in the caps. The bottles have no head and no carbonation. I will try moving to a warmer room.  

    Make sure you put them in the fridge for 3 days before opening to drink.

  10. 44 minutes ago, StretchNM said:

    This just hit me. My Safale yeast is still in the fridge as I type this. If I start brewing in the next few minutes, that means I'll need to pitch yeast in about an hour. Is that enough time for the yeast to warm to room temperature?


    Should be and if not just let it set on the counter a little longer.

    • Thanks 1

  11. 5 hours ago, Shrike said:

    My tentative schedule:

    -  WDA Enhanced (again)
    -  Witch's Flight (again)
    -  AuFlanders Belgian Extra Pale Ale.  This will be my version of Briess's Belgian EPA recipe, with minor changes to the hops and mash bill.  It'll be the first brew I will have done that includes no HME.  I'm looking forward to it.
    -  Day After Day IPA
    -  Egocentric Jerk Ale
    -  Black Beer'd Porter (again).

    I hear a door opening. :)

    • Haha 3

  12. Next up will be a APA. I have my grist and water treatments set in Beersmith, but still adjusting my hops schedule.


    Originally I was just going with Mosaic and Amarillo, but I'm thinking that could turn out too sweet and fruity without some counterpoint, so I'm going to add Simcoe into the hops schedule as well. IBU's will be about 50. SRM 9.5 and ABV 5.5-6%.


    My batch will be 4.75 gal full volume BIAB. That's about the most I can do in my 7.5 gal kettle without having to deal with top off water calculations.


    My grist will be Maris Otter, Munich, Vienna, Crystal 40, and Wheat. Hops will be a 60, 30, 10, and flameout additions with no dry hop. Yeast US-05

    • Like 5

  13. 1 minute ago, StretchNM said:

    Brew #2  -  MRB - 1776 Ale

    Finally... a success! After losing to my first brew batch - MRB's American Ale, I've got a winner. At least, to me it is! Not quite as carbonated as I'd like, and lacking in sustainable head, it's as sweet as I could have asked for. No sourness. No unpleasant aftertaste. Just a nice, sweet Ale. I can do this.



    1776 Ale - 1.JPG

    1776 Ale - 2.JPG

    Congrats! My first two batches were awful, so you're off to a better start!

    • Thanks 1

  14. On 5/2/2019 at 11:03 AM, Lukon said:

    Can I split a six gallon Coopers recipe among two LBKs putting two gallons in each then add a gallon of clean water to each at kegging/conditioning to maintain the original flavor profile? How differently will the yeast behave in the more condensed wort? My mini fridge only holds two LBKs, though I think I can get a six gallon bucket in it with a low profile airlock setup. Will a six gallon bucket be sufficient and offer a little headspace and trub space?

    Alternatively, you could split it among 3 lbk's and put 2 in the mini fridge and make the 3rd a saison and put it on top of the mini fridge. Saisons need little to no temp control.

    • Like 2

  15. 6 hours ago, Mic-S said:

    Was low on extracts when I found a can of Breiss CBW Golden Light on sale at a local hardware store for <$9.  It's a 3.3 lb soft can for 5 gallons.  I'm gonna half it, add some malto-dextrin and a lager yeast (Saflager 33) and see if I can brew a lager/pilsner out of this for the daughter who likes the domestic lights.  Wondering if any here have tried the Breiss extracts?  I've used plenty of their DME's, but never the extract.

    Yah, agree with Creeps. That can is approx equivalent to about 5.5 lbs of grain, so should be good for a 2.5 gal batch.

    Their extract is excellent and I've used it in a number of partial mashes.

    • Like 1
    • Thanks 1

  16. 27 minutes ago, Jdub said:

    i don't even take off the blowoff tube.....just open the latches, lift it up a little and pour in the hop pellets. i don't use hop sacks anymore b/c the brew bucket compacts the gunk so well below the racking arm, and my beer has very little sediment. been doing different types of ipa's so much lately and they all call for dry hopping. just the style i like. will try some variety when i get through my queue.

    Lol, my lid doesn't want to come off that way, like a vacuum is holding it shut. 

    I might have to try just throwing the pellets in next time!

    • Like 2

  17. I whirlpool with a spoon while I have the immersion chiller bringing the temps down and in that process I'll stir up my hop bag additions with the spoon and squeeze the wort out of them on the side of the kettle, cause I've always hated losing that wort.


    Several of my recent brews haven't called for a dry hop, but I hadn't considered a hop addition in the whirlpool stage and may try that as an aroma addition. The IC always takes 30-40 minutes to chill, so it would give plenty of time for that aroma addition.


    In some ways I'm like @Fire Rooster in that I like to close up that fermenter and not expose it to air for the next 3 weeks, particularly the ss brew buckets because it's going to suck in air pulling the blow off tube out of the jar and then opening the top. 


    The LBK I don't mind as much, since smaller batch and ease of dry hopping.

    • Like 1

  18. I joined the FB page for about 15-20 minutes before leaving. My takeaway, is that the main focus and discussions are to be about MBR extract brewing. Lol, maybe I should rejoin since I'm sitting on 8 cans of HME that I'm going to have to start brewing before long!


    I have no issues with that focus on MRB extract at all, as that's their core product, and how we all took our first steps.


    Whether or not you use or like FB, social media is huge and MRB should have already had a presence on it . I would hazard a guess that management needed to clean house and brought in fresh young faces to increase marketing appeal. Business wise it's a smart move.


    Does our MRB Community page still have a place in all this? Yeah, I think so, because despite the convenience of extract kit brewing there is that progression that MRB promotes to partial mash and so for those that get drawn in to grain usage are going to end up here for help.


    Just my thoughts and sorry for being long winded but the coffee is a bit strong this a.m.





    • Like 1

  19. 2 hours ago, Creeps McLane said:

    Well, if you’re trying to clone figlet then id say youd have to steal yeast from bottles of petite prince or some other non barrel aged jester king beer. Theres a ton of brett and lacto in their house strain. 


    Otherwise, theres nothing wrong with the belle saison. I almost exclusively use saisonsteins monster from omega. It really dries out the beer but has a restrained belgian character but keeps the more spicy notes. I hated the french saison strains. Thats just me though. The regular belgian saison strains are usually good if youre looking for a more pronounced belgian apricot type. For figlet id maybe try the C2C american farmhouse strain from omega and let it ferment for 4-6 weeks because of the brett in it. Remember, brett is yeast, its not a bacteria. Theres nothing to fear

    What about carbonation? I use a sugar dot =1/2 tsp for pales, etc. but for saisons I used 1/4 tsp and that worked out well.

    I certainly don't anticipate a close clone to the Jester, but I never do with any clone recipe, I just like to take the general grist recipe and put my print on it. Lol, why I'd rather not have tasted the original. No expectations and no frustration, just my beer.


  20. A Witbier and a Jester King Figlet Ale will be my next beers now that I have got a couple of staples in the works that will shore up my somewhat depleted pipeline.


    The Wit, I'm glad to give another shot at now that I have a grain mill and can make sure that my wheat is crushed well. That didn't work out well on my last batch, but live and learn.


    The Figlet ale will be an experiment but I've researched a bit on smoking figs and will try both hot smoking them and cold smoke and pick which would be best to dry hop in the ale. As to which saison yeast to use @Creeps McLane, you do a lot of farmhouse ales so I could use a little advice there and I'm open to suggestions as the only one I've used has been the Belle Saison dry yeast.

    • Like 2

  21. Brewing a 3 gal batch of Altbier tomorrow, BIAB. Gathered my grains, and normally grind them the night before but not happening tonight.

    Weather going to be perfect for brewing in the garage with a high of 74. That means the IC coil should get me down to pitch temps pretty fast.

    Alts are fun as the hop schedule isn't demanding and I love the hybrid nature of fermenting an ale at lager temps. That Wyeast 1007 rocks.

    • Like 2
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