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Messages - jivetyrant

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Beer Recipes / Classic Irish Red advice needed!
« on: May 11, 2013, 11:59:38 AM »
Hey folks!

I'm going to be brewing an Irish red soon (my first time brewing this style) and would like some recipe input. I was planning on using Jamil's recipe from Brewing Classic Styles. Here it is.

11 gallon batch

60 minute boil
OG .1.053
FG 1.014
22.3 IBU's
13.5 SRM
5.1% ABV

19.5lbs English Pale Ale (90.7%)
8 oz Carared (not in the original recipe, I added this) (2.3%)
8 oz Crystal 120 (2.3%)
8 oz Crystal 40 (2.3%)
8 oz Roasted Barley (2.3%)

2.75 oz East Kent Goldings 5% AA (Bumped up from 2.5oz to keep IBU's on target)

2 tsp Irish Moss
1tsp Nutrient

Nottingham yeast

Mash @ 153 for 60 minutes, batch sparge

Ferment @ 66

I added 8oz of Carared to the recipe and adjusted the other crystal malts down to accomodate for it.  It seems like a clear match for the style.

I've been using a lot of Maris Otter recently and would like to try out something new as a base malt. Does anyone have any recommendations for another interesting tasting British style base malt that would work well for this style? I was hunting around for interesting base malt options and found a few that look promising. If I stick with an English base malt I have several options; standard Pale Ale malt, Maris Otter, Halcyon, Golden Promise, Pearl and Optic. I've also stumbled across something that looks very interesting; Malting Company of Ireland Ale Malt! I only have experience with Maris Otter, the others are all totally new to me. I'm leaning heavily towards trying the Malting Company of Ireland Ale Malt.

Would Nottingham be an appropriate choice for this style? I prefer to use dry yeast when making double batches as it's easier to dose both carboys equally.  I suppose I could just make a large starter of Irish Ale and make sure it's very well suspended before splitting it, I'm probably just worrying too much.

Any other advice would also be greatly appreciated!

Kegging and Bottling / Keg line balancing issue
« on: January 26, 2013, 09:36:21 PM »
Thanks!  I'll try ordering a 20ft line and going from there.

I loved the "2.2psi/ft is nonsense" thing. That's what I get for trusting manufacturer specs!

Sorry if I started a thread on a subject that's already been beaten to death.  I should have known better and searched the forum first!

Regarding the difficulties in getting to 3.6 volumes of CO2, the charts I've referenced say that it's achievable at 24ish psi and 38F.  Are those charts flawed at the extreme high and low ends?

Kegging and Bottling / Keg line balancing issue
« on: January 26, 2013, 06:19:41 PM »
So I kegged my Gratzer earlier this week and carbed to the recommended 3.6 volumes, which gives me a head pressure of about 24psi.  I ordered a 3/16 polyethylene draft line that is 11' long, the manufacturer lists line resistance as 2.2psi/ft.  I'm dispensing with a cobra tap that stays in the fridge.  The equation I am using for calculating draft line length is as follows:

Length = keg pressure (24) -1 (apparently cobra taps create about 1psi of resistance) / line resistance (2.2 psi/ft).  There is no elevation to take into account.  So, the equation should be

Length = (24 - 1)/2.2 = 10.45.

I cut my line to 10.5', I am using a ball lock, 1/4" flared fitting and just crammed the line over it.  The line is coiled up into a roughly 1' circle, and is sitting more of less on top of the keg.

All seems well on paper, but the beer shoots out of the draft line like a fire hydrant!  Did I miss something?  This will be the first time I've tried kegging a highly carbonated beer so I'm a bit lost. Does anyone else have experience with this?

Ingredients / Blueberries en masse
« on: June 29, 2012, 03:54:00 PM »
Thanks for all the tips!  I've decided to go with the majority and freeze then lightly mash them, then rack on top and have a Homebrew.  I'll post the results in a few weeks!

Ingredients / Blueberries en masse
« on: June 27, 2012, 12:04:01 PM »
I have a beautiful tasting wheat that's just finished primary.  I plan to add 11lbs (eleven) of blueberries and am devising a plan to do so.  I see a few options, but am a little lost as I've never added this quantity of fruit to any previous batches!

I could cook it down, as you would when making a proper blueberry pie.  This would pasteurize it, but would probably necessitate adding some pectic enzyme to stave off excessive cloudiness.  (I already have some on-hand)

I could mash and chemically pasteurize it with sulfite or sorbate.  I've never done this before, my only experience with this was adding some campden tablets to a carboy before I dropped it off at a cider mill in town.  I have heard that the amount needed varies significantly with the pH of the fruit you are using.  I do not have a method to accurately determine pH.

I have heard that a hard freeze can take care of most of the offending little critters, but I don't know if that's true, or how long to freeze them for.  I have a chest freezer that sits at a comfortable -10F.

Or I could RDWHAHB and simply mash them up and rack on top. 

Thoughts and suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What is your perfect spring beer?
« on: March 14, 2012, 01:01:44 PM »
Thanks for the opinions folks!  I just ordered ingredients for an american wheat and a kolsch, I can't wait to get them in!

General Homebrew Discussion / What is your perfect spring beer?
« on: March 12, 2012, 12:55:50 PM »
I'm prepping for my first AG brew day sometime in the next few weeks and I'm having a heck of a time deciding on what to brew!  So, I'm turn to the community for inspiration.  What type of beer really screams "spring" to you? 

To give you a picture of my current cellar, I have a holiday spiced ale, ESB, Irish red and pumpkin porter on draft (yes, I really need to get through that holiday themed beer faster!)  In (recent) bottles I have a milk stout which came out superbly and a hoppy brown gone wrong.  I don't really know how to describe it, it's not really a brown ale and it's not particularly hoppy...  but it's good!  On deck I have an applewine that's currently cold crashing and a pre-anchor steam beer that should be ready to bottle later this week, plus a cranberry braggot that probably has another month to go before I do much else with it.

I'm looking for something medium bodied that will be ready soon, and I'm perfectly happy to use a kit.  So, what do you think, world?  What's your perfect spring beer?

Beer Recipes / Re: Cali Common
« on: February 11, 2012, 01:16:51 PM »
My first Cali Common is actually in the fermentor as we speak.  As such, I can't offer much in the way of advice but I'll share the recipe I used anyway!  The grain bill is a bit odd for a Cali Common in the current sense, but I am trying for more of a pre-prohibition era steam beer.  After reading the chapter on Cali Commons in Designing Great Beer I was smitten with the idea of a less attenuated, mouth filling beer which was made in that time period.  I ended up using NB anyway, even though I don't believe that was used at the time.  I don't intend on lagering this batch, as according to his account the beer was sold "fresh" having been given only 3 or 4 days from the end of fermentation to the bar.  I omitted any crystal malt and used a good deal of raw sugar as the yeast is designed to be a low-medium attenuator.

1.051 OG
5.5 gallons
39.5 IBU
5.4% ABV
90 minute boil

6.6 lbs Pilsner LME
4oz pale chocolate malt
12oz special roast
.5oz Northern Brewer 90 mins
.5oz NB 60 mins
.5oz NB 15 mins
1/2 irish moss 10 mins
1/2 tsp yeast nutrient 10 mins
1lb raw sugar 10 mins
.5oz NB at flameout, steeped 20 mins
Pitched a 2L starter with 3 smack packs Wyeast 2112 on a stir plate (it was pretty old yeast)
Aerated with O2 for 30 seconds

Currently fermenting at 59-60 F.  It was fermenting so vigorously the night before last that it actually popped the top off of my fermenting bucket.  Thankfully it was inside a fermentation chamber or I would have had a real mess on my hands!

I will taste it once fermentation is done and evaluate the need for a rest period before bottling.  I've got high hopes for this one!

Beer Recipes / Re: Sweet stout recipe recommendations
« on: January 14, 2012, 01:42:33 PM »
Here's what I ended up with, thanks for the input folks. :)

Recipe Specifications
Boil Size: 5.00 gal
Post Boil Volume: 4.25 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.75 gal   
Bottling Volume: 5.53 gal
Estimated OG: 1.052 SG
Estimated Color: 46.9 SRM
Estimated IBU: 27.7 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 60.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 55.2 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Amt                   Name                                     Type          #        %/IBU         
3 lbs                 Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM)           Grain         1        26.0 %       
1 lbs 4.0 oz          Roasted Barley (300.0 SRM)               Grain         2        10.8 %       
1 lbs                 Crystal, Medium (Simpsons) (55.0 SRM)    Grain         3        8.7 %         
1 lbs                 Oats, Flaked (1.0 SRM)                   Grain         4        8.7 %         
8.0 oz                Chocolate Malt (Simpsons) (430.0 SRM)    Grain         5        4.3 %         
8.0 oz                De-Bittered Black Malt (Dingemans) (550. Grain         6        4.3 %         
3 lbs 4.8 oz          Pale Liquid Extract (8.0 SRM)            Extract       7        28.6 %       
1.00 oz               Newport [9.80 %] - Boil 60.0 min         Hop           8        27.7 IBUs     
0.50 tsp              Irish Moss (Boil 10.0 mins)              Fining        9        -             
0.50 tsp              Yeast Nutrient (Boil 10.0 mins)          Other         10       -             
2.0 pkg               Nottingham Yeast (Lallemand #-) [23.66 m Yeast         11       -             
1 lbs                 Milk Sugar (Lactose) (0.0 SRM)           Sugar         12       8.7 %         

Mash Schedule: Single Infusion, Full Body, Batch Sparge
Total Grain Weight: 11 lbs 8.8 oz
Name              Description                 Step Temperat Step Time     
Mash In           Add 9.06 qt of water at 168 156.0 F       45 min       

Sparge: Batch sparge with 2 steps (1.10gal, 2.50gal) of 168.0 F water

Yeast and Fermentation / To Bret or not to Bret, that is the question...
« on: January 07, 2012, 01:37:54 PM »
So I've got a troublesome hoppy American brown ale that I've been fiddling with for a while now.  It's beautifully clear (finally) but is somewhat under-attenuated.  It's only about 4 points high, I was hoping for 1.012, but I'm still getting enough residual sweetness while it is cold and un-carbonated that I couldn't drink a lot of it at a time.  The Chinook I used for dry hopping seem to have been over-dried as they imparted a somewhat cooked vegetal character that was not present before, so I'm trying to find a way to drown that flavor out.  I have been toying with the idea of getting a Bret culture and pitching it just to see what happens.  It would be my first brewing experience with the little buggers so I really don't have a clue what the result would be!  Does anyone have input on the subject?

Beer Recipes / Sweet stout recipe recommendations
« on: January 07, 2012, 01:30:20 PM »
So my wife bought me an array of misc brewing ingredients for Christmas this year.  She got a variety of hops, yeasts and grains, several of which I've never used.  Included were 2 smack packs of Wyeast 1945 NeoBritainnia and a 1lb bag of lactose.  I decided that a sweet stout would be a nice usage of the two, but I've never tried making one before!  I've been hunting around for solid recipes to use as a base, but one thing I've seen is a wild variation in the amount of lactose used.  Many recipes use the full 1lb, some use only a few oz's.  It seems to me that a large amount (ie, a lb) would be needed to impart all the richness normally present in a milk stout, but I've only ever had 1 commercial example. (Left Hand Milk Stout)  I'm also wondering if I'd be better off simply using some S-04 or US-05 or Nottingham and saving the Neobrit for something different.

If anyone has experience with this style I'd love some input.  I checked the recipe wiki but there are none posted.  Does anyone have a winning recipe they'd like to share, or simply some information about brewing the style?


Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Re: Real or canned pumpkin?
« on: December 15, 2011, 12:43:13 PM »
I did a pumpkin porter this year.  I went with about 2 lbs of sugar pumpkin (pie pumkpin, w/e it's called in your neck of the woods) I cubed and briefly boiled it, then put it through the food processor until it was roughly the consistency of a chunky mashed pototo.  I then did a mini-mash with 6-row and some other specialty grains.  I had read that the extra enzymes in the 6-row would help to convert what sugars there were in the pumpkin.  I didn't bother straining it, all the pumpkin dropped out after primary.  It came out great!

Beer Recipes / Re: Dogfish Head Indian Brown Ale from Zymurgy Jul/Aug 2011
« on: November 26, 2011, 01:53:36 PM »
I did this recipe as well, it didn't come out even close to the DFH beer.  I had major problems with the yeast, (I used Ringwood) it wouldn't flocculate at all, even after 3 weeks in primary.  I ended up having to fine it twice to get it all to drop out, and when I tasted it the flavor was way off.  The recipe does not call for dry hopping, but the official description of the beer says that it is.

Since mine did not come out with the right flavor profile I decided to dry hop it with some homegrown Chinook.  I plan to check it in another week and go from there.  It'll be a tasty beer, but it won't be Indian Brown. :(

Beer Recipes / Re: Looking for a holiday spiced ale recipe!
« on: November 19, 2011, 03:01:22 AM »
After some looking around I came up with a recipe.  Here it is, critique it as you will! :)

Recipe: Jen's Holiday Ale
Brewer: Jenna
Asst Brewer:
Style: Spice, Herb, or Vegetable Beer
TYPE: Extract
Taste: (30.0)

Recipe Specifications
Boil Size: 6.95 gal
Post Boil Volume: 6.24 gal
Batch Size (fermenter): 5.50 gal   
Bottling Volume: 5.50 gal
Estimated OG: 1.055 SG
Estimated Color: 27.0 SRM
Estimated IBU: 21.5 IBUs
Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 %
Est Mash Efficiency: 0.0 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes

Amt                   Name                                                        #        %/IBU         
8.0 oz                Crystal, Medium (Simpsons) (55.0 SRM)        1        5.3 %         
4.0 oz                Aromatic Malt (26.0 SRM)                             2        2.7 %         
4.0 oz                Fawcett Pale Chocolate (205.0 SRM)             3        2.7 %         
6 lbs 9.6 oz          Pilsner Liquid Extract (3.5 SRM)                  4        70.6 %       
1 lbs                 Candi Sugar, Dark (275.0 SRM)                      5        10.7 %       
0.50 oz               Perle [8.00 %] - Boil 60.0 min                       6        13.4 IBUs     
0.50 oz               Perle [8.00 %] - Boil 20.0 min                       7        8.1 IBUs     
0.50 tsp              Irish Moss (Boil 10.0 mins)                           8        -             
0.50 tsp              Yeast Nutrient (Boil 10.0 mins)                      9        -             
4.00 tbsp             Vanilla (Boil 5.0 mins)                                10       -             
0.25 tsp              Allspice (Boil 5.0 mins)                               11       -             
0.25 tsp              Cinnamon (Boil 5.0 mins)                            12       -             
0.25 tsp              Clove (Boil 5.0 mins)                                   13       -             
1.0 pkg               Safale American  (DCL/Fermentis #US-05)    14       -             
12.0 oz               Maple Syrup (35.0 SRM)                             15       8.0 %         

Adding the maple syrup at flameout.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Braggot pitching rate?
« on: November 18, 2011, 07:52:08 PM »
Decided on a 10g pitch, according to red star this should give me 400b cells.  The recommended pitch rate according to beersmith is 370b, so that should work well.  I cut the nutrients back to 2.5tsp of wyeast brewer's brand.

It's currently chilling to pitching temp, I'll pitch the yeast and pectic enzyme soon!  Now I just have to decide how much I want to carbonate it....  probably pretty highly!

Thanks for the input, folks!

Edit: OG was 1.089ish.  I don't trust it as a solid reading due to the incredible amount of solids in the wort sample.  2lbs of pureed cranberry will tend to do that!  It's easily the best tasting wort I've made, though. ;p

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