I hope I didn't come off as complaining about Bruunwater- great tool, thanks Martin it has greatly increased my understanding of what is in my water and how it affects the mash. My beer looks and tastes better. I was worried about my technique. I was thinking that it might be correctable. I think in the future I'll try to adjust to account for the pH being a little high.
Just tested the PH on an ordinary bitter mash. Mash tested at 5.4 at 66F. Not that I'm real worried about it but Bruunwater estimated my mash PH at 5.2. I am planning on doing at least one batch of BoPils this summer and would like to be able to hit a low mash PH. I seem to consistently run .2 high. I have a recent Ward labs water test and I use a Hanna PH meter that was calibrated this morning. Any thoughts?
Just tapped an APA that is really lacking in hop aroma and flavor. I experimented with this hop bill as follows: 1 oz Cascade FWH .75 oz Horizon @20 min .5 oz Horizon @15 min .5 oz Horizon @ 10 min .5 oz Centennial @5 min 1 oz Cascade @ 2 min .5 oz Centennial @ 0 min
This is a 1.058 APA with 73% American 2 row, 9% Munich, and some wheat malt and caramel malts. I used a hop spider for the first time on this brew (only have 3 hop bags). Is this just not enough late hops? Will dry hopping help the aroma or am I just stuck with a ho-hum APA?
FWIW I have a Blichmann mounted through the side of my cooler MLT. Doesn't consistently read the same as thermometers in the mash (I don't recirculate or anything, not the fault of the thermometer). If I could do it again I wouldn't bother putting one in. Nearly cost more $ than the rest of the MLT.
I would calibrate my boil kettle- you need to know how much is coming out. Might be a good idea to run water through the MLT and see how much remains when it quits draining- not sure if it will be exactly the same as when you mash/lauter but it will give you an idea. You may want to take a lot more measurements than you did when extract brewing. I'd figure what/when/how to take those.
Maybe even walk through the process and look for potential headaches in your system. I'm pretty low tech which means lifting/carrying kettles full of hot wort and water. If you have that type of setup make sure you are prepared for what could be potentially dangerous.
What will you do with your spent grains?
Make sure you have everything lined up and prepared ahead of time. I like to make sure that I have a sixer cooled and someone to help drink it. BBQ also helps.
Just echoing the earlier comments. I have a 22.5 inch platinum charcoal and a WSM. Both well-designed and durable. Brew with a guy with a Genesis. He loves it and it has to be nearly ten years old. No issues whatsoever.
I would second Big Chicken. Ask them. I just got off the phone with a friend who ran across a nice sweet stout from Empyrean in Lincoln. He told the staff that he liked the beer and had a friend who was a homebrewer. Sounds like they gave him the recipe- we'll see tomorrow when he stops by.