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Topics - mihalybaci

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Hop Growing / Trim back first shoots?
« on: March 31, 2015, 01:15:12 AM »
In the book "Homegrown Hops", David Beach mentions a technique where one cuts back all of the first hop shoots that come out in the spring, and then only letting the second round climb. He mentions that this method may produce enhanced hop production and reduce pests. Has any one tried this and does it produce noticeable results?


Yeast and Fermentation / Fermentation Temperature wih WLP028
« on: December 14, 2012, 03:56:25 PM »
On Monday I'm going to pour 5 gallons of strong scotch ale (OG ~ 1.125) onto a yeast cake of White Labs WLP028 Edinburgh ale yeast, so the pitching rate should be pretty spot on for the gravity. My only question is what temperature to ferment the beer, depending on which room I stick the carboy the ambient temperature can vary from 59-61F, 62-64F, and a closet that drops to 50-52F at night. I've read numerous posts (and the scotch ale book) suggesting fermentation temps from 55-60F for this kind of beer, but White Labs says this yeast does not ferment well below 62F. Any suggestions?

Beer Recipes / Session Sweet Stout
« on: October 25, 2012, 05:37:27 PM »
I'm considering doing a sessionable sweet stout of around 4% ABV (OG~1.048) with the following recipe:

5.5 lb Pale LME
1 lb Crystal 80
0.5 British chocolate malt
0.5 Black Patent Malt
1 lb Lactose
WLP002 English Ale yeast

I would like a nice balance of sweetness and coffee/chocolately roastiness, so do any of those amounts seem out of whack? I'm shooting for a lower alcohol version of Left Hand Brewing's Milk Stout, for those of you who've been able to enjoy that beer. Thank you for any suggestions.


General Homebrew Discussion / Golden Strong Ales - Do they age gracefully?
« on: September 28, 2012, 02:53:19 PM »
I brewed up a Belgian Golden strong (OG - 1.085, est. ABV - 10%, 30 IBU). I know that strong beers age better than weak beers and darker beers age better than paler beers. How will my pale strong beer age? Will I be enjoying a better beer in late April or should it all be drunk by January 1st? Right now the beer is on day 13 in the primary and its finally starting to slow down, hopefully I will be bottling next Wednesday/Thursday.

Yeast and Fermentation / Methods to cool a hot fermentation?
« on: September 17, 2012, 02:41:20 PM »
On Saturday I brewed a Belgian-style tripel/golden strong, fermented with WLP545 (Belgian Strong Ale). Last night I went to bed with the thermometer reading 68F, and I woke up this morning and the temp was 73F. Following posts about fermentation temps, I wrapped the carboy in a wet towel and pointed a box fan at it. The ambient temp in our house is usually between 65-70F, and bear in mind I have no electronic means of temperature control.

So my question is, am I risking a stalled/stuck fermentation by trying to drop the temperature 5 or 6 degrees this late in the game? Is there some other cooling method I could/should do instead?

Follow-up question: If I'm shooting for 85%-90%+ attenuation, at what point is it safe for me to try and boost the temp to ferment those last few gravity points? 5 days? 7 days?

General Homebrew Discussion / Diacetyl Blindness
« on: August 22, 2012, 07:35:34 PM »
This morning I received an email with some judges' comments from a competition (an APA, it did okay). One of the comments was "diacetyl", which I don't find at all when I taste it. Nor did I detect diacetyl when I took the BJCP exam where they doctored the one of the test beers with it. Is there a widely available commercial beer that just screams DIACETYL that will let me know once and for all if I'm "diacetyl blind"?

Yeast and Fermentation / When to Start My Starter
« on: August 20, 2012, 03:38:26 AM »
I will likely be brewing up a Belgian-style tripel Next Saturday, and I figure I'll need a 3-4 liter starter. Usually my starters are about 1.5 L and I just pitch the whole volume, but I can't really do that with such a large volume. How long should I let the starter sit for maximum growth and how long should I cold crash it before brewing? Also, I'm guessing I should get the starter out of the fridge the morning of to let it warm up to room temp before pitching?

Yeast and Fermentation / Sugar and yeast nutrient
« on: July 31, 2012, 03:10:35 PM »
I'm planning on making 5 gallons of Belgian golden strong ale soon (OG ~ 1.082) with the current recipe sitting at 24% plain sugar. I'm planning on making a large starter, but with such a high percentage of sugar I was wondering how much of what kind of yeast nutrient would be best to ensure a good fermentation? Or do I even need to add nutrient?


Beer Recipes / Traditional Scotch Ale Recipe
« on: July 01, 2012, 05:15:55 PM »
I've read in "Brewing Classic Styles" and "Scotch Ale" that traditional recipes for wee heavy are simply pale malt and roasted barley with much of the complex malt flavors arising purely from an extended (2+ hour) boil. I would like to try this, but I also don't want to make a flat tasting beer. Has any one tried the extended boil method with good results? Are there tips/tricks for producing a beer that a true Scotsman would enjoy?

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