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Topics - alcaponejunior

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Ingredients / Anyone tried Serebrianka hops?
« on: February 20, 2013, 02:55:21 PM »
I have a pound and was thinking of using them in a blonde ale with Wyeast 1332 yeast.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Ten Fidy!
« on: December 28, 2012, 04:06:24 PM »
Excellent imperial stout from Oskar Blues. 

Fully blogged here.


Black as used diesel motor oil from an old caterpillar on the farm, with a great, lasting brown head and tremendous lacing.

Although it’s a bit subdued for an imperial stout, the aroma smells of sweet roasted malts, coffee, dark chocolate, molasses and caramel. The rising smell of alcohol seems to accent the complex aromas nicely.

Taste wise the complexity only increases.  Bitter roasted malts, molasses, honey, coffee, chocolate, a touch of dark fruits (raisins?), and notable alcohol taste are rounded out by a slightly acrid bitterness from the ample hops.

The body is thick and rich, gaining complexity as it warms.  Carbonation is smooth and silky.  A lovely burnt, roasty, bitter malt character finishes it off and leaves a nice stouty aftertaste.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Rogue Chipotle Ale
« on: December 27, 2012, 01:46:42 PM »
Every year I pick one of these up, and every year I feel angst over the enigma that is this beer.  It's certainly well crafted though, and very consistent. 

blogged here

Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh New Glarus, the creme-de-la-creme of fruit beers!   ;D

I just traded some black butte XXIV for some NG raspberry tart, Belgian red, and some Enigma...

I am in beer heaven.  This is what they will be serving in heaven.  ;D ;D ;D

Apple enigma wasn't available, but I have a future trade already arranged...  8)

All Grain Brewing / SMaSH for my first AG batch
« on: September 05, 2012, 06:59:39 PM »
Strongly considering a SMaSH for my first all grain batch this weekend.  NOTE: 3.5 gallon batch! 

Basic recipe:

6 lbs Maris otter
0.5 oz willamette 60 min
1 oz willamette 7 min
1 oz willamette 0 min
1 oz willamette dry hop


1.047 OG
34.2 IBU
4.9% ABV

I want a very light, easy drinking, easy to brew, lightly hoppy, simple pale ale.

Will this do it?

Here's a link to the full exact procedure and more detail than you probably want, lol.

I'm pretty set on keeping this first brew a SMaSH.  I can still adjust the recipe (hops or water), but I will be using 6 lbs of maris otter for the grain. 

Beer Recipes / All Grain American Stout 3.5 gallons - Using Beersmith II
« on: August 26, 2012, 02:06:13 PM »
OK.  I just got beersmith II and I've been playing around with it for the last few days.  I'm about to go all grain and plan to brew 3-3.5 gallon batches.  I have a five gallon mash tun made from a cooler.

Now I'm probably going to make a few very simple beers first, smash, IPA, pale ale, American amber etc to get my process with mashing down.  I'm confident on yeast and bottling, and with extract batches. 

I would like to make an American stout, and am loosely using this recipe as a baseline:

Here is what I currently have put into beersmith...

maris otter, 6 lbs
120L caramel, 10 oz
chocolate malt, 10oz
flaked oats, 10oz
roasted barley, 10oz

0.75oz columbus at 60 minutes
1 oz cascade at 10 minutes
0.5 oz cascade at 5 minutes*
might use wyeast, WLP or dry yeast, suggestions?

beersmith settings:

pot and cooler, 5 gallon / 19L
style American stout
fermentation ale single stage
batch size 3.5 gallons
measured batch size 3.5 gallons (why is measured different, and why doesn't it auto-update?)

OG 1.063
FG 1.012
SRM 39.3
SBV 6.6%
IBU 65.1

There is sooooo much other info in beersmith it's a bit overwhelming.  Comments, suggestions, and ideas to tweak the recipe welcome!

*on the recipe wiki the judge's comment was "could use more hop flavor" so I tossed in some extra late cascade

All Grain Brewing / Considerations for 3-gallon all grain batches
« on: August 18, 2012, 09:36:57 AM »
OK.  I want to start doing 3-gallon all grain batches. 

The reason for this is that I'm doing this on stovetop in a apartment, and 5 gallon batches are currently impossible as the stove won't heat that much wort to a boil.  I can easily do 3.5+ gallons though, allowing a bit of room for boil-off, the immersion wort chiller, and still having three (or slightly more) gallons of post boil wort. 

I want to do the sparging in a cooler.  I was thinking of an igloo type water cooler.  However, I'm not sure the best type of cooler or the best procedure to use and how to do it.

I am familiar with both fly and batch sparging, and the consensus seems to be that batch sparging would be best.  I have several links marked for batch sparging, but please do say which one is your favorite.

My first few attempts will involve pretty simple pale ale, IPA, amber ale or SMaSH recipes. 

All comments welcome.

Commercial Beer Reviews / Deschutes Obsidian
« on: August 18, 2012, 03:39:25 AM »
Just tried this one yesterday and it's GREAT!  It's just like one of those big, wonderful stouts but with only about 6.5% ABV, so you can drink a couple of them and not get hammered.  The nose was great, but the body and taste were where this one shined.  TONS of flavor and a wonderfully rich and thick body.  Definitely a must try.

Deschutes has really been impressing the hell out of me lately.  We've gotten about seven of their beers locally and they're all damn tasty. 

Commercial Beer Reviews / Stone Brewing POLL
« on: June 03, 2012, 11:48:37 AM »
There really never has been such a boon to the local beer store than when they finally got Stone beers.  Today I'm having an IPA, which is simply fantastic.  It was the IPA that pushed me and my taste buds over the wall of hoppy goodness.  But everything from Stone is simply outstanding. 

Oh, and their bottles work great for homebrew.  ;D

Commercial Beer Reviews / Let's talk southern tier
« on: May 25, 2012, 07:02:19 AM »
One of the biggest boons to my local class six liquor store is the recent addition of southern tier beers to our selection.  And truth be told, the more I have from this brewery, the more I like them.  I have my favorites though. 

We've got a plentiful supply lately of Oak Aged Un*earthly Imperial IPA, and I really like this stuff!  The regular Un*earthly is really good too, albeit a bit more bitey and oily on the hops. 

The iniquity black ale is pretty damn good too.  It's another one of my favorites from this brewery. 

Choklat is a rather strange one for me.  I really like it, but rating it a 4.0/5 on beer advocate made my review of it 6.5% lower than average.  It's super chocolatey, with nice roasty and a bit of lightly burnt character.  To me it's like someone pumped hershey's chocolate syrup into a beer, a lot of it, and came up with a good result!  (I love hershey's chocolate syrup, BTW, best chocolate milk there is).  Whilst being very sweet, it maintains a slight dryness on the chocolate flavor (if that makes any sense, lol). 

Their Pale Ale is simply lovely.  Simple, light, easy to drink, and flavorful.  Rates a 92 overall, 95 for style on ratebeer.  The 92 overall is amazing, given the beer is in a category that's famously rated poorly by people who rate beers (they obviously favor highly hopped IPAs and imperial stouts).  My only criticism is that pale ale isn't available in cans (at least not in my area), so you really can't take it to the lake to go fishin'. 

IPA and 2xIPA are also delicious, and regular selections of mine.

I'm not as fond of the 422 wheat, old man, Phin and Matt's, and Eurotrash pils, although these are all fine beers.  But you gotta have your favorites when there's lots of selections. 

Anyone with hopinions on southern tier, please do elaborate in great detail. 

I've never been a big rib fan - until a friend (who's a much better cook than me) taught me how to do baby back ribs.  Today I made a marinade that is just fantastic!  I can't wait to taste them! 

Now the story behind this marinade is that I have a sweet stout that I made that's OK, but not fantastic.  I've drank all but about 10 bottles of it, so it's plenty drinkable.  However, it's just not fantastic, there's a slight off burnt flavor that I suspect is from slightly scorching the wort during boiling (I'm doing this on an electric stove between two burners, at least till January that is, so control is difficult).  Anyway, this slightly burnt sweet stout makes a great cooking beer for barbeque!

BTW I rarely measure anything in the kitchen.


1 bottle beer of your choosing
1 bottle barbeque sauce of your choosing (I used a simple brown sugar BBQ sauce)
a decent amount of brown sugar (3-4 TBSP if you must measure)
a decent amount of dark molasses (2 TBSP if you must measure)
a good amount of your favorite hot sauce to taste (more for spicy, less for mild)
a good amount of your choice of mustard (gives it twang)
half an onion, chopped up fine
garlic to taste (I chopped up a few cloves)
Spices to taste*

Mix it up and save about 1/3 of it for the end.

Remove the membrane from the back of your rack of baby back ribs.  Use a knife and start from the middle.  Once you get it cut and peeled back a little, it should pull off in one large piece on each side of the ribs.

Marinate the meat in a flat pan with the rest of the sauce for about two or more hours, covered with foil.  Make sure both sides are covered.  You can use a rub or pre-spice the meat if you so choose.   

After marination, place covered pan in oven at 275-300F for two hours or so, depending how big the rack is.  It will basically be done and falling off the bone when you remove it, as it slowly steams and boils in the marinade.

After it comes out of the oven, place ribs on barbeque grill and baste with remaining sauce.  The sugar makes it caramelize and gives it a nice glaze.  Make sure to BBQ and baste both sides.  You're only doing this to get a good BBQ glaze on the ribs, they should already be fully cooked. 

You can broil instead of grill.  There are also other methods of pre-cooking the ribs too, many of which will work just fine too, but I like this way best. 

The hardest part is deciding what beer to serve while you're preparing the food.  8)

* I used a little Mexican carne asada seasoning, a little spicy pepper mix from McCormick, and some McCormick mesquite mix

Beer Recipes / SN Bigfoot Ale Clone ideas?
« on: May 05, 2012, 07:43:57 AM »
Wow, Just Friggin' Wow!  That's some damn delicious barleywine, one of my all time favorites!    :o

That is some extremely hoppy stuff!  To me it's almost like a barleywine IPA.

Bigfoot Ale on SN website

I'm working on a clone recipe (to be brewed in the fall, so no rush), anyone tried to brew one yet?  Got any suggestions, successes, failures?  I'll be trying it extract/partial mash, and hope to finalize a recipe by around september/october lol.

Ingredients / elderberries / juniper berries
« on: April 01, 2012, 04:36:33 PM »
has anyone worked with these?  I've had elderberry wine and loved it.  I've also had a couple of juniper berry beers that were delicious.  Can you make a good homebrew fruit beer from them, and if so, how would you go about it?  I'd be doing partial mash.  I see dried berries of both types available on homebrew websites.

Extract/Partial Mash Brewing / Imperial Stout brewing questions
« on: April 01, 2012, 10:51:31 AM »
You guys are so great in helping with recipes, I've got another one for ya, with questions about the process too.

Here is a sample recipe from brew builders for an imperial stout.  I'd like to try one sometime in the future (after proper recipe modifications, and also proper equipment upgrades).

Briess Traditional Dark Liquid Extract 15 lbs, 4.8 oz
Weyermann Rye Malt 1 lbs, 4 oz
Crisp Chocolate Malt 1 lbs, 0 oz
Briess 2 Row Caramel 120 1 lbs, 0 oz
Special B    0 lbs, 12 oz
Centennial Pellets 3 oz @ 60 mins
Centennial Pellets 2 oz @ 30 mins
Cascade Pellets    2 oz @ 15 mins
Oak Chips, Untoasted 1 ea
White Labs Super High Gravity Ale


OG 1.134 FG 1.027 IBU 67.9 SRM 60.51 ABV 14.02

I know dark extract isn't popular on this forum, but hopefully someone can 'splain me better why.  Which extracts should I use, how should I modify the specialty grains, should I use different grains, etc?

Also, I am assuming I would need at least a 6.5 gallon bucket with a blowoff tube, but would you recommend something different?  How do you handle beers like this that will have a lot of krausen?  Having an exploding bucket is definitely NOT an option!

Primary and secondary fermentations - how would you approach these?

Bottling and conditioning - what's the recommendation as to how to approach this?  Besides the obvious effects of aging, what considerations should I think about when it comes to aging a beer like this in bottles?  I tend to use 22oz bomber bottles, BTW, although I sometimes use 25oz and 12oz bottles too.  The main reason I use 22oz bottles is because you need fewer of them than 12oz, and I drink a lot of beers that come in bombers.

Oxygenation for such a strong beer - how to do it?

Also, what other changes to make in a recipe like this one in order to optimize my results?

I'd probably like the final ABV to be a bit lower, although not below 11.  Can I just use less extract?

I also want to assure maximum body and color.  I'd hate to brew an imperial stout with an ABV > 10 that wasn't thick and chewy, or didn't come out of the bottle looking like used diesel oil.  ::)  However, the target of 60.51 SRM on the sample recipe... how does that compare with your RIS recipes?

BTW there is no chance of my attempting to brew this one anytime soon, I have five or six others in the queue before this one could be attempted. 

Thanks for all insights!

I'm thinking of making an all-citra IPA.  Curious about recommendations for hopping schedule.  Shooting for 60-70 IBUs.  Mainly curious how much to use for dry hopping.

Also, what specialty grains would you use?  I'm thinking up to about 3 lbs of grains and the rest extract for an ABV of about 6.5-7.


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