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Micro Brew Maniac

Hot Break with MB?

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Hello all!

I'm guessing this is a total n00b question, but heregoes:

I'm going to be whipping up a batch of First Pitch Pilsner so that it is ready to drink for my baseball team's first game this season. But I'm having a problem - the more research I do on brewing the more enlightened and confused I get at the same time. :huh:

Here's the recipe as per MB:
1 Can High Country Canadian Draft
1 Can Pale Export UME
1 Packet Dry Brewing Yeast (under lid of beer mix)
1 Pouch Booster™
1 Packet Sterling Pellet Hops

Here's the dilemma:
Basically the instructions say to add the hops at knockout. I'm concerned, and have been warned, that by doing it this way there's a chance that the pellet hops might add a grassy tone to my brew. So I thought it might be a good idea to add the hops about 15 minutes before end of boil. Now here's the question.
Do I add the HME & UME to the pot and wait for the hot break before adding my finishing hops? Should I just add the hops after the Booster is dissolved and then boil for 15 minutes then add the HME/UME? Or should I just dry hop it and call it good? Any suggestions are appreciated.

:chug: Cheers!

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Sounds like you might be reading too much. You dissolve the booster in lukewarm water, then boil, then remove from heat and add the cans and the hops. Stir it all up and then pour into the fermenter. Don't boil after adding the cans.

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The cans have already been boiled. Boiling them again could change the taste and color. When it comes to MrB, I would follow the directions if thats the recipe your going with. The HME has already been boiled with hops, so your last addition of hops will be correct without boiling them.

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Right on. Thanks guys. I guess I AM reading too much into this. So basically Mr. Beer has done all the work, all i need to do is combine what they send me.

What if I want to get my hands dirty?

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The next step I went with were recipe kits from austinhomebrew.com. They are a little more involved and a good next step to get your hands dirty. They are 5 gallon kits though, but I'm betting you could split them over 2 MrB kegs if you wanted.

Or you could start adding additional DME/LME to MrB recipes to give your beer a little more ABV, body, etc...

I'm currently steeping .25lbs Crystal, .25Carapils with each MrB recipe, along with adding a pound of either Light DME or Amber DME depending on the recipe.

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jungerer wrote:

Or you could start adding additional DME/LME to MrB recipes to give your beer a little more ABV, body, etc...

I'm currently steeping .25lbs Crystal, .25Carapils with each MrB recipe, along with adding a pound of either Light DME or Amber DME depending on the recipe.

Hmm, that sounds really interesting. Is the DME used to replace Booster?, and also do you add hops to balance the extra malt?

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I got a bit of a grassy taste on the two beers I've tried leaving the hop sack in the fermenter for. It conditioned out quite quickly; it was no problem at all. They were 2 of my first 3 batches so I sampled a bottle every week. I think by 2 weeks carbing most of the grassyness was gone. By 2-2-1 it was nonexistent.

As for getting your hands dirty, that depends upon the kind of person you are. I personally cannot see myself making more than about 5 Mr. Beer standard (as in just the cans) batches ever. I'm at about 3 as we speak. I just can't stand following recipes so I immediately started formulating my own in qbrew using my own hop additions to Mr. Beer deals or DME and hops from my LHBS (first attempt at steeping is coming up as soon as I find time!). Some like to take it slow with slight variations to really get a good feel for how everything works. That seems like the better way to do it...if you can stand it.

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Micro Brew Maniac wrote:

jungerer wrote:

Or you could start adding additional DME/LME to MrB recipes to give your beer a little more ABV, body, etc...

I'm currently steeping .25lbs Crystal, .25Carapils with each MrB recipe, along with adding a pound of either Light DME or Amber DME depending on the recipe.

Hmm, that sounds really interesting. Is the DME used to replace Booster?, and also do you add hops to balance the extra malt?

DME is different from booster. It can be used instead of booster or in addition to it. DME is dehydrated malt extract, so it's similar to the UME that Mr Beer has, but with the liquid removed. It's all malt, so it adds flavor and body as well as some sweetness due to unfermentable sugars. It may also change the color a bit.

If I start with a standard refill, I use the booster (but I wouldn't buy booster separately). I also add DME or LME. I usually add hops to counter the additional malt.

That's my approach, but others have taken different approaches and ended up with good beer. You'll want to experiment to find a recipe or recipes you like best.

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jungerer wrote:

I'm currently steeping .25lbs Crystal, .25Carapils with each MrB recipe, along with adding a pound of either Light DME or Amber DME depending on the recipe.

Would you please xplain how you steep .25lbs Crystal, .25Carapils with each MrB recipe.

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Micro Brew Maniac wrote:


Hmm, that sounds really interesting. Is the DME used to replace Booster?, and also do you add hops to balance the extra malt?

Yeah the DME replaces the booster, adds the wanted ABV, color, taste and gives the beer a little more body to it. I haven't added any additional hops yet though. I prefer the malt to overly hoppy.

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Kenny wrote:


Would you please xplain how you steep .25lbs Crystal, .25Carapils with each MrB recipe.

I measure out .25lbs of each, put them in a muslin sack. If I am using booster with the MrB recipe, I disolve that in the pot, bring it up to boil, turn off the heat, soak the grains for about 20 min. Bob the sack, like making tea, then take it out and bring the water back to boil. Continue on with the MrB recipe instructions. Usually after its back to boil thats when I'll go ahead and add the DME and get it past the hot break.

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jungerer wrote:

Kenny wrote:


Would you please xplain how you steep .25lbs Crystal, .25Carapils with each MrB recipe.

I measure out .25lbs of each, put them in a muslim sack. If I am using booster with the MrB recipe, I disolve that in the pot, bring it up to boil, turn off the heat, soak the grains for about 20 min. Bob the sack, like making tea, then take it out and bring the water back to boil. Continue on with the MrB recipe instructions. Usually after its back to boil thats when I'll go ahead and add the DME and get it past the hot break.

That's exactly what I've been doing, except I use a Muslin sack. It's make out of a thin material like cheesecloth. Not sure what Muslim sacks are like. Must be a religious thing.

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