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Wine, Beer, and Spirits>Homebrewers - Whats in the fermenter?
Chainsaw13 07:11 AM 11-25-2015
Originally Posted by stearns:
Ah I misread, thought you meant there were different "strength" tablets, not that you use a different amount of them :-)
No worries. My LHBS has the other types of tablets, where's it's one big honkin' tablet for each bottle. With that, you're stuck with one level of carbonation. These smaller tablets allow you to customize based on the style of beer.
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Chainsaw13 10:38 AM 12-05-2015
Brewed my latest batch this morning, a maple pecan brown. Just aerated and pitched the yeast. If the taste from the hygrometer is any indication of how this one will taste, we have a winner. And I haven't even added the maple syrup yet. That's for the secondary.
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Chainsaw13 02:49 PM 12-05-2015
Intersting. An hour after pitching the yeast, I already had a bubble in the airlock. It's 3.5 hours later and it's picking up frequency. :-)
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stearns 08:42 AM 12-14-2015
Did some beering yesterday. Bottled my Jade IPA (did half in bottles and half in a keg to force carbonate, I'll see how that holds up in a side by side). I also brewed up some White IPA, pretty similar to a basic IPA but with a lot more wheat in the grains. Everything looked fine, although it calls for lemon grass and sage with the dry hops. I don't know if I want to go down that road, I might keep it as-is, but I'll sleep on it a little and see how I feel.
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Chainsaw13 08:56 AM 12-14-2015
White IPA? Interesting. Can't wait to hear how it turns out.
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stearns 09:11 AM 12-14-2015
The recipe I used was similar to this. The main differences were that I didn't use any sugar in the brewing process (don't know what the purpose of that is unless you were trying to boost abv), and I used a heffeweizen yeast instead of the one listed there. Other than that it was mainly halving the recipe to make 5gal and some minor adjustments on the hops to make it fit better to what I had and needed. I have absolutely no idea how it's going to turn out, but it should be interesting.
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Chainsaw13 06:29 PM 12-28-2015
So planning my next brew. Was thinking either a porter or stout. Probably a stout since I just drank the last of my Mexi-chocolate stout. Just bottled my maple pecan brown on Sunday. Used maple syrup as the priming sugar. I hope the flavor carries through, although. I don't think it'll be a big flavor. Only used ~1.5 oz for the 1.5 gallons. Still a great pecan flavor.
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stearns 06:59 PM 12-28-2015
Interesting, so no traditional priming sugar at all, just the maple syrup?

I just dry hopped the white IPA today, put in 50g of lemon grass and 1g of fresh sage. I'm not sure how the sage will infuse (it was only a few leaves) but the lemon grass should give it a light kick that I think will complement the heffeweisen/wheat style. Another few weeks and I'll report back with the results
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Chainsaw13 07:04 PM 12-28-2015
Originally Posted by stearns:
Interesting, so no traditional priming sugar at all, just the maple syrup?

I just dry hopped the white IPA today, put in 50g of lemon grass and 1g of fresh sage. I'm not sure how the sage will infuse (it was only a few leaves) but the lemon grass should give it a light kick that I think will complement the heffeweisen/wheat style. Another few weeks and I'll report back with the results
Correct. Based on everything I read, it's 70% fermentable, compared to table sugar at 100%. So a little more is used. Northern Brewer has a nice calculator to figure it all out. I just hope my redneck fermentation setup carbs the bottles better this time. Using a seedling mat inside a plastic tote. Bottles are then placed inside there, with the top put on the tote. Seems to be holding around 64-66F.
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Chainsaw13 07:07 PM 12-28-2015
Drank the last of my 12oz Xmas Carrot Cake Ales. Finally starting to get some carbonation. These I didn't put in the tote. Tastes great though. I have 4-5 more 22oz bottles left.
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Chainsaw13 03:00 PM 01-02-2016
Brewed a milk stout today. I'm dialed in on efficiency with the brew in a bag setup. Hit 82% this batch (80% on the last two). Now I just need to get my volumes right. Had to boil it down to get to my batch size for the fermentor. Over shot the OG by 5 points. :-) Pitched some extra S-04 to make sure there was enough yeast in the batch. Used Wyeast 1084 as the main yeast. Going to be interesting how the two ferment it out.
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Chainsaw13 07:26 PM 01-03-2016
Bubbling away. :-)
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8zeros 12:52 PM 01-04-2016
I got a kit for Christmas. A one gallon sized oatmeal stout brew.
This ain't another one of those "slippery slopes" is it?
I want to brew a German bock or doppelbock since they have become scarce after the ale craze that's seem to taken hold.
I haven't found the time to start my brew yet. It's tough for me, I have to spend most of my time making a living, the rest of the time I have to fix things.
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Chainsaw13 01:01 PM 01-04-2016
Originally Posted by 8zeros:
I got a kit for Christmas. A one gallon sized oatmeal stout brew.
This ain't another one of those "slippery slopes" is it?
I want to brew a German bock or doppelbock since they have become scarce after the ale craze that's seem to taken hold.
I haven't found the time to start my brew yet. It's tough for me, I have to spend most of my time making a living, the rest of the time I have to fix things.
It can be, if you decide you need all the big, fancy gadgets to brew. But you'd be amazed at what you can do with the 1 gallon kit.

A bock or dopplebock might be hard to do without specialized equipment. Being a lager, it needs to ferment at lower temps (50F). You might be able to get away with it in a cold basement this time of year.
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8zeros 08:25 PM 01-04-2016
Originally Posted by Chainsaw13:
It can be, if you decide you need all the big, fancy gadgets to brew. But you'd be amazed at what you can do with the 1 gallon kit.

A bock or dopplebock might be hard to do without specialized equipment. Being a lager, it needs to ferment at lower temps (50F). You might be able to get away with it in a cold basement this time of year.
OK, I've got some learnin' to do. Must be why it's known as a winter beer.
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stearns 11:42 AM 01-11-2016
There's no end to the learning Roger, I'm a relative newbie as well but I've fallen into it pretty hard. Lagers are definitely tricky with the temp control, I haven't ventured down that path yet although I've been tempted.

I brewed up a batch of black IPA yesterday, or "Dark Side IPA" as I'm going to call it. While making my recipe I ran across he debate between black IPA and hoppy stout. it was an interesting topic, but it basically comes down to brewers choice for naming. This was a pretty basic IPA recipe (although I think I got overly complicated with the five types of hops), but with about 5-6% weyermann carafe III special in the grain bill. This stuff had a really interesting small, almost like a caramel popcorn, although after sparging I swear the whole thing smelled like sesame oil. The beer in the fermenter looks lie chocolate milk, but I'm trying to get the texture down to the thinner side. Really looking forward to this guy being ready :-)

Thinking about using this design for the cap:
Image
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BigBruce 07:01 PM 01-24-2016
Originally Posted by 8zeros:
I got a kit for Christmas. A one gallon sized oatmeal stout brew.
This ain't another one of those "slippery slopes" is it?
I want to brew a German bock or doppelbock since they have become scarce after the ale craze that's seem to taken hold.
I haven't found the time to start my brew yet. It's tough for me, I have to spend most of my time making a living, the rest of the time I have to fix things.
Sweet mother of god! If you have not started yet do not do it. I just brewed my first batch and of course I just moved back from Germany so guess what I want to brew. So I've started looking at online brew forums and have seen all kinds of cool stuff. Primary fermentatiors, keezers, and other cool man stuff. So now my wife is mad I'm spending money on a new hobby. So when I look at all this stuff on my iPad I have to hide like I'm looking at ****. If this sounds like the life you want to live than brew up your first bag. Prost!!!
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8zeros 04:29 PM 02-03-2016
Originally Posted by BigBruce:
Sweet mother of god! If you have not started yet do not do it. I just brewed my first batch and of course I just moved back from Germany so guess what I want to brew. So I've started looking at online brew forums and have seen all kinds of cool stuff. Primary fermentatiors, keezers, and other cool man stuff. So now my wife is mad I'm spending money on a new hobby. So when I look at all this stuff on my iPad I have to hide like I'm looking at ****. If this sounds like the life you want to live than brew up your first bag. Prost!!!
I haven't even had the time to brew up the kit and I already had a few hundred dollers of equipment earmarked online. I am ready to get a swapmeet fridge for lagering. Checking out where to get the best deal on grist, etc. ...
My wife would be like "What are you doing? I thought you had to order some parts to fix the gear, are you through with the customer's project, the car isn't fixed yet, the garage is a mess, where you gonna put that,...,...,...,...?!"
OW! Make you want to drink beer.
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stearns 05:52 PM 02-03-2016
Originally Posted by 8zeros:
I haven't even had the time to brew up the kit and I already had a few hundred dollers of equipment earmarked online. I am ready to get a swapmeet fridge for lagering. Checking out where to get the best deal on grist, etc. ...
My wife would be like "What are you doing? I thought you had to order some parts to fix the gear, are you through with the customer's project, the car isn't fixed yet, the garage is a mess, where you gonna put that,...,...,...,...?!"
OW! Make you want to drink beer.
And thus we come full circle :-)
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stearns 09:14 AM 02-22-2016
The black IPA was ready to try this weekend, I think it's up there with the best I've made, but it was a little too hoppy. The color was as black as it can get, held it up to a light in a clear glass and could barely see through it. I will definitely be making this again with taking about an ounce of hops out (I think I had 5-6oz for a 5gal batch but I need to check what I ended at with the recipe).

I made an attempt at a tripel yesterday, a friend came by and did a brew alongside it as well so that was pretty cool with 2x 5gal batches going. Both of us ran into the same issue though, we started with 6-6.5 gal in the hop boil but both ended around 3-3.5gal of ending wort. He boiled some water and added it to it to get his up to 5gal, I kept mine at the level it ended at, somewhere just under 4gal. I figure I would rather end with less of what I intended rather than diluting it with water before adding yeast.

I also made a started for the yeast since it was going to be high ABV, I didn't have any DME so I used sparge runoff from the batch, let it cool down then added the liquid yeast to the cooled down runoff. it will get added to the fermenter tonight, I figured that starting the fermentation one day later was better than possibly not having enough active yeast to get up to the ABV I was targeting. I made three additional starters this way for future use, putting them in a mason jar and into the freezer to defrost the day before the next brew.

I really don't know how this is going to turn out, there are a lot of uncertainties around the brew process but I'll report back in about a month when it gets done bubbling :-)
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