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Messages - Roger Burns

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Ingredients / Re: Maple Sap Extract Beer
« on: March 10, 2014, 03:30:18 PM »
One if my club mates makes maple sap beer. I believe he makes a pilsner due to the very light flavor if the sap. It can be easily overlooked if you don't know it's there. There was some discussion about the sap water mineral profile also lending to lighter beers. The problem with adding extract , in my opinion, is that the water used in the malting process contains all the original minerals. If you truly are interested in the flavor coming through wholly, without influence from extract, maybe try going to all grain with a friend who can help guide you, or try Brew In A Bag.

I brew almost exclusively BIAB, and it's easy to make the jump from extract to AG with only a couple dollar investment. Get a nylon paint strainer at the hardware (my stire sells 2 five gallon strainers for $4).

Using your existing kettle and equipment, add your grains to the bag, steep in the sap/water for an hour, pull the bag, and continue as you have brewed. Not too difficult, and can help you decide if you want to move up to AG, larger batches, etc, or not. Ymmv.

Events / Re: three cheers for the AHA staff
« on: March 07, 2014, 07:47:27 PM »
There were a lot of changes, but I think that they were well worth it.  I applaud the GC and AHA for this years efforts!  Thank you.

Events / Re: NHC Hotels filled up already?
« on: March 06, 2014, 05:04:57 PM »

Events / NHC Hotels filled up already?
« on: March 06, 2014, 04:26:24 PM »
I don't want to start a panic, but when checking into the hotels next to the Devos center in GR, several people in my club found that they had sold rooms using the AHA/NHC rate and are filled for the dates of the conference already.

I had held off, like many, waiting for the official announcement for hotel information.  I'm hoping that the hotels are filled because they have not released the room blocks yet.

Any idea what's up with hotel options?


The Pub / Re: 5 issues craft beer drinkers should be aware of
« on: March 01, 2014, 01:26:16 PM »
Worst thing that happened to me while brewing was not to me, but my daughter. She walked by as I turned on a pump. The end of the hose was not pointing down into the kettle. It was pointing up and out. A stream of hot wort shot 5 or so feet away and just missed her face. That was a wakeup call. I have a safety zone now of ten feet or zero children. We also do not crack a brew until the cleaning finishes in most cases.

I would love to get rid of all my glass carboys, but until then, I use milk crates to protect them and myself. I almost never touch the glass.

All Grain Brewing / cold-weather brewing
« on: March 01, 2014, 01:03:42 PM »
I brew in my garage in Ann Arbor, MI. It's been bitter cold here, too. I like those hand warmers that you get 8 hours out of. I'm thinking of making a complete jacket out of them if this cold stays on...  -11 yesterday.  Soon. Soon...  Spring will come.

Homebrew Competitions / Re: NHC
« on: February 11, 2014, 06:05:26 PM »
IE11 is the current name of my IT existence. I used to support it, but MS changed so much on 11, that it's not even rdcognized as IE by sites anymore. Kinda humorous to have Outlook telling you that your browser sucks, and try IE when that's what you are using...  Lol. And to make matters worse, it's forced down through updates. Grumble grumble.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Storing an empty keg
« on: November 29, 2013, 02:23:48 PM »
FWIW, I clean in batches, too. I'll breakdown all kegs and clean with pbw, replace o-rings yearly, and fill one keg completely with StarSan. Then I push the StarSan through to the next cleaned keg, so there's no oxygen left in.  I store pressurized and upside down. I do not re-sanitize. I have 10 waiting for me right now...

Yeast and Fermentation / What should I offer this guy?
« on: June 12, 2013, 02:58:03 PM »
I travelled in Mexico once upon a time. The seller of any product would inflate the cost of something 4x it's value so if an inexperienced gringo talked him down to half the asking price, he would be ahead. Guess who the inexperienced on was?

Based on that experience, and knowing the condition is poor, starting at less than half for the pair is not out of line. And if he is not ok with it, he should counter offer. I would not worry about offending him. Unless he is stupid.

I've just given away hundreds if dollars of stuff because I needed to in a short timeframe. The value of the space it was in was higher than the cost, so I ate it and parted. Unless you know his motivation, start low. $1000-1250 would be my opener, for what it's worth.

General Homebrew Discussion / Dry Barrel Aged Barleywine
« on: June 05, 2013, 05:40:17 PM »
I dont mean to hijack the OP's question, but have a similar beer. How do you prepare the maltodextrin?  Do you just dump it in, or boil it with water, etc?  And any suggestion on amount?

General Homebrew Discussion / These guys need to clean up their act
« on: April 04, 2013, 01:43:46 PM »
Ok. After retreading the background, maybe not like Nissan. In that story a small owner is being bullied by a large company for something they want.

In this story, both parties are small, and wrongness (at least morally) appears on both sides. Guess we will see.

As far as renaming, how about Stranger Than Fiction Brewing.  Since its unlikely the movie tm would overlap...

General Homebrew Discussion / These guys need to clean up their act
« on: April 04, 2013, 01:17:24 PM »
Might have been mentioned before, so I apologize if it was, but this reminds me of the battle. Nissan is the family name of the owner if a small computer repair service that has been battling Nissan motor company for rights to the domain and name in a battle going back 14 years. The details are at if you are interested.

I'm not a lawyer, and would hate to be in the position of either party. I do not see a clear right and wrong here, though many do. I guess it's for the courts to decide now, but its a shame it came to this.

All Grain Brewing / Starter All Grain Equipment
« on: March 11, 2013, 10:56:48 AM »

I don't see where you're doing anything wrong, but I also don't see where it's easier than what I do.  But that's the beauty of homebrewing.....

Sorry Denny. Typing on phone so really never answered the question. The point of BIAB is that it is cheap, easy, and a good stepping stone if one wants to try all grain.  It also scales up nicely.

I have a three tier RIMS pico brew-stylesystem, too. The cleanup is faster in BIAB with only one kettle. It shaved off about an hour in setup and cleanup.

But if you want to buy all the hardware, that's cool, too. I was just throwing this out as a suggestion since space was listed as an issue.

All Grain Brewing / Starter All Grain Equipment
« on: March 11, 2013, 12:17:23 AM »
I guess I'm doing BIAB wrong since I use a 40 gallon (not quart) kettle, a bag, and brew between 10-20 gallon beers on it. I use three thick-wall conduit poles ($10 each) in a tripod and use a small chain binder to lift.  It's nice to not have to clean much up and the three pole tripod folds up and is in my garage.

I also have s smaller one using paint strainer bags from the local big box store. I brew on it when I brew away from home.

BIAB is a cheap and easy way for someone to 'test the waters' of all grain brewing without the massive investment.

Hop Growing / Re: Hop trellis options and a few other questions
« on: March 06, 2013, 05:12:30 PM »
Forgot to mention, if you plan on planting more than one variety they need about 5' between them, and over time, they will try to intermingle.  This can be avoided by sinking in some barrier between the plants.  I did not do this and have a battle every spring and summer to keep the sneaky rhizomes from moving under the sod.  They can easily grow 10' in a season.  More underground than above ground growth if the weather is hot and dry like last year.  Oh, I'm in SE lower Michigan, so YMMV.

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