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Messages - jaftak22

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1
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Spring 2015 Beer Swap
« on: April 23, 2015, 09:44:05 PM »
Cool. Get well and enjoy. No rush on my end. The homebrew bombers should go first, they were filled off a keg.

Jim I don't know if this is feasible, but I think what you have put together is amazing. This is something that should be done again. Did not get to participate as I have been out of the loop. What a great way to tie our community together in such a way.

I feel as though we need to do this Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter.

2
Homebrewer Bios / Fish Bio
« on: April 23, 2015, 03:48:28 PM »

Who Are You: Aaron Fisher (everyone calls me Fish)

Home Town (City, State): Everywhere USA, Active Duty Army

Homebrew Club: Not involved in one right now. I am getting ready to move up to Fairbanks, Alaska and want to start one at Fort Wainwright.

I've been a homebrewer since: Spring 2013

Do you have a homebrewing disaster you'd like to share? Absolutely! So I brewed an Old Stock Ale on a Thursday night. My family and I decided to go up to Northern Colorado to do some duck hunting with family. I put the carboy in our spare room because it stays really cool and dark in there. Well when we got home on Sunday evening there was yeast everywhere. It was on the walls, the ceiling, carpet, window blinds and of course all over a pair of my wife’s brand new pair of shoes. She hasn’t let me forget about it either.

What is your favorite style(s) to brew? My favorite styles to brew are Brown Ales and IPA’s. It is what I drink the most of and I dedicate about 80% of my brewing efforts making the best examples of the style that I can.

What style(s) will you never brew? Who would do this? It doesn’t seem like a good idea.

What was the first beer you ever brewed?  How did it turn out? So when I bought my starter kit I bought the German Wheat extract kit. Everything went great but I didn’t seal the lid on bucket very well and it tasted like band-aids. Still to this day I cannot stand the smell band-aids. Every time my kid needs one my wife has to do it.

Have you ever had a homebrew mistake that turned out great? When I first started brewing beer all of my friends wanted to come over. We were making an IPA ( this was also right after I made the switch to all grain) and I lost the recipe after the mash. We just decided to throw all 4 hops in at 60 min, 30 min and at flame out. The beer was fantastic.

What is your favorite beer recipe?
Are you a BJCP Judge?  Not yet!
Describe your brew system. I have homemade kettle, Blichman burner, several carboys, buckets and a 10 Gallon Rubbermaid cooler.

How frequently do you brew (times/month or /year)? 3-4 times a month

If you could serve your homebrew to someone famous, who would it be and what would you give her/him? If I could on give one beer to someone it would have to be Thomas Jefferson. He himself was a home brewer and I’m sure he would love a good IPA

What's the most unusual ingredient you've ever used in a brew? Un-sulfured Molasses
How many medals have you won from homebrew competitions? I have one lonely Silver medal from my Brown Ale I won last winter.

Do you brew alone, with friends or with someone you live with? I brew with everyone. My kids help me all the time, my wife, other family and friends.

Are you an indoor or outdoor brewer? I do both. When I am making my small 1-2 gallon batch’s its all inside. Anything bigger and I am outside. By the way Colorado Springs ground water in January makes for fast cooling of wort.

List some of the names you've given your beers. Which is your favorite? Bitter ol’ Basterd (Imperial IPA), Fishers Brown, Clove Grove (Hefe), Irish Red Head

3
Pimp My System / Re: Pimp my Fermentation Chambers!
« on: April 23, 2015, 01:30:21 PM »
That is a brewhaus to be proud of! With those SS fermentor's you don't need to do any type of modifications to the inside part of the fridge?

4
Beer Travel / Re: Germany trip wrapped up
« on: April 06, 2015, 07:15:56 AM »
It was a Friday night. It was a cool experience and I think I would go there again, with someone who hasn't. I also prefer breweries without as much foot traffic. 

My goal is to try and reproduce a Dunklewiezen like I had in Bamburg.  It was terrific, any tips at all?

5
Beer Travel / Re: Germany trip wrapped up
« on: April 06, 2015, 06:44:47 AM »
On the beer hall side and restaurant side it was just packed to the gills. The Hofbräuhaus was worse and the reservation suggestion was just to let you know. I asked some people and they said you can reserve tables in the beer halls as well as the restaurants.

6
Beer Travel / Re: Germany trip wrapped up
« on: April 05, 2015, 04:14:58 PM »
Must have been horrible to settle for fresh Augustiner! Lucky dog!

That Augustiner is new, the main brewery proper is west of the main train station.

These is also an Ayinger tap across the square near the Hofbräuhaus. Looks to be an area
 that has a lot of beer.

Jim it was amazing, wish the pictures had taste-a-vision. There is so many beer establishments. My recommendation is to make reservations for wherever you go

7
Beer Travel / Re: Germany trip wrapped up
« on: April 05, 2015, 03:27:30 PM »
Thanks! Had to go back and fix one of the pics that I didn't upload properly.

8
Beer Travel / Germany trip wrapped up
« on: April 05, 2015, 03:14:58 PM »
So I was in Germany for right at a month. What a trip it was and an experience that I would recommend for any beer enthusiast. Just wanted to give you guys a quick break down of my time there and I feel greatful for the people I met and some of the things I saw.

The first experience that I had was just outside of the Army post Grafenwhoer. Not exactly the ideal place to really experience Germany, but hey for a free trip I wasn't going to complain. All of the beer that we drank here was primarilly from Nurenburg and my gosh the Dunklewiezen was outstanding. The great thing about the Guest Houses is that most of all the food and beer was really cheap. Here is an example of a really basic lunch that I bought for 5 Euro.



My boss arranged for me to meet 7th Generation Head Brewer/Owner of Schlossbrauerei Hirschau. His name  is Franz Dorfner and this guy was amazing. He spoke very good English which was a plus and having toured many breweries in the states, this was unique. My boss had told him that I was a home brewer but it I don't think I asked questions that most people would ask. Besides that it was hands down the best tour I have been on and he has won many world wide awards. He took us through every nook and cranny of his operation and he moved with such speed for an old man! At the end of the tour he busted out 5 different samples and at 9 o'clock in the morning I drank about 3.5 liters of beer ( Nap took place right after the tour).




On our way from a trip to the Munich Airport we are on the A93 and I saw a sign for a Hop Museum!! Once I made it clear to my boss that he would not live to see the next day we stopped. It was 3 Euro to get in and everything is in German. No problem with that as you get the jist of the whole tour even with the language barrier. The tour pretty much starts with the beginning and modern aspects of Hop farming, Literature and Hop Art. Really cool place to spend an hour and there is a great Deli right across the street that sells great sandwich's and local brew.




No trip to Bavaria is complete without a good trip to Munich. We had all good intentions of getting into the Hofbrauhaus but no one told us that you had to have reservations. That place was packed so we walked over to the Augustiner brewery right across the street. Amazing experience and I forgot to take lots of pics as the food and beer was incredible. We spent the whole night in this part of Munich and I can't wait to go back.


9
Beer Travel / Hop Museum
« on: March 14, 2015, 06:32:41 PM »
So I am in the Army and the sent some of us on temporary assignment to Germany. I had posted a while back asking for advice on places to go. Everyone had recommended places to try beer and its just everywhere here. All of the local pils has been amazing but I cannot seem to drink enough of the Dunkelwiezen. It is just the best damn beer I have ever had, going to miss it. Not only is the beer good, but its really, really cheap. Like $2.25 for a .5 liter cheap

So when driving towards Munich we were deep in Hop country and we spotted a sign for a Hop museum. Holy crap this was the coolest thing that I had seen in a while. It cost about $5 to get in but if you really look it everything you could be in there for and hour and a half. I will post pictures once I can, but it was incredible. Once your done with the museum there is a little bakery across the street that sells their local Hefe

10
Homebrewer Bios / Re: Brewer Bio: flbrewer
« on: March 01, 2015, 06:19:07 PM »
I grew up in Melbourne, miss it sometimes. My sister in-law is from Jacksonville. Hope to get stationed at Ft Stewart after we are done in Fairbanks, AK. Would be awesome to catch a Dolphins/Jag game!

11
Homebrewer Bios / Re: Brewer Bio: flbrewer
« on: March 01, 2015, 06:18:16 PM »
I grew up in Melbourne, miss it sometimes. My sister in-law is from Jacksonville. Hope to get stationed at Ft Stewart after we are done in Fairbanks, AK. Would be awesome to catch a Dolphins/Jag game!

12
Equipment and Software / Re: New to this hobby
« on: February 25, 2015, 02:33:45 PM »
If you want a book that might be a bit easier to read, I would recommend you read How to Brew by John Palmer. It is a little easier to follow than Complete Joy of Home brewing. I have both and will refer to either one of them as a reference pretty often. How to Brew's chapter on all grain brewing is pretty much step by step and is really easy to follow.

Another thing you could do is watch the videos on home brewing here on the AHA website. The videos are well put together. If you do have questions about anything else just post here on the forum. There are many people who will give you great advice. Welcome to the hobby, its a lot of fun!

13
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Mash temp and thermometer
« on: February 22, 2015, 07:52:21 PM »
I use this (http://www.thermoworks.com/products/low_cost/rt600b.html) made by the thermopen people. It's very accurate and reasonably quick but not as fast or accurate as a thermopen. It's a fifth of the price but not a fifth of the quality. It's a good product. It was $19 well spent.

156 is pretty high for a mash. I'd think 148-152 would be a better range for that style but I'm not one for brewing IPAs so I'll let others come in and give you better suggestions.

There's nothing about being self-made that doesn't benefit from having allies and mentors around you. Every successful person has had people around them that they lean on. If that is the reason you have declined joining a local group then I'd encourage you to rethink that attitude.
It really isn't my choice for not being in the homebrew club, at least until I move. I got back from Afghanistan 9 months ago and now we are moving to Alaska in May. So there is a club up there in Fairbanks and I do plan on joining. Looking forward to it. When I took up deer hunting my neighbor taught me more than I could have learned on my own. After about 5 years he would sometimes take my advice.

If it wasn't for this forum I would probably botched a few more batches than necessary.

14
General Homebrew Discussion / Mash temp and thermometer
« on: February 22, 2015, 07:26:47 PM »
So I don't know if anyone else has had times in their home brewing adventures where they feel frustrated. My thermometer sucks and it needs to be replaced. As of right now I use a floating thermometer that I got with my kit when I first started brewing two years ago. I had one of the lab thermometers from Austin home brew supply but it broke. I am searching for something for someone in a budget, that isn't junk ( looking to spend up to about $25 -$35 bucks).

The other thing that is on my mind is the competition that I got my score sheets back from this weekend. Keep in mind please that I am not in it for glory, its more or less for me to get feed back from people who don't drink a blue moon and think its Gods gift to man.

Judges came at me hard for my IPA not finishing dry. Its things like that which are brought to my attention that I would have never noticed. I honestly think the beer is pretty good. Judge recommended that I lower my mash temp. I mashed at 156 for 75 minutes. So mashing at lets say 150 would have given me a beer with a dryer finish? Just didn't read that from what I remember. I am not a member of a local brew club (not by choice) so I have been completely self taught on everything!! Its fun but sucks at the same time. That line about being a self made man is a croc sometimes!

15
Equipment and Software / Re: The Crush
« on: February 18, 2015, 03:02:40 PM »
No unbroken husks, I thought it looked good. It was just suprising how much different it looked. The reason I bought the mill in the first place is because I had a feeling the crush from the LHBS wasn't up to par. Probably why I had not been hitting my target gravity's

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