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Messages - beersk

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Sometimes a vial of yeast is getting a little long in the tooth before it gets from CA to ME after being shipped in who knows what conditions. So, I started making starters mostly to proof the yeast. The upside was more consistent results in the end. Is the beer better, I think so, but there's a lot of personal bias going on in that evaluation.

I think this is one of the more important reasons for making starters, and like Jim said, yeast health. There are many paths to making good beer, but not as many to making great beer.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hydrometer Reading
« on: April 22, 2015, 06:48:35 AM »
There is no hydrometer.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Universal Poppet O-ring
« on: April 20, 2015, 12:50:27 PM »
I'd probably just buy a new poppet, to be honest. I do really like the universals, have them for all my kegs.

Equipment and Software / Re: Thermapen Sale
« on: April 20, 2015, 07:59:50 AM »
Yes, but think of the time I'm saving with my 3-second readings! Good point though and thanks for the additional links.

Haha, SO much time!

I love my thermapen as well, great investment.

Ingredients / Re: Using your back yard creek
« on: April 20, 2015, 07:57:06 AM »
There was a Brewing TV episode where they used straight lake water and they said they couldn't tell it was brewed with lake water. So, it could probably be done in the OP's case.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Anxiety of Kegging
« on: April 17, 2015, 05:59:38 AM »
Rule #1: The beer in the keg will always achieve the perfect balance of flavor, carbonation, and clarity about 2 or 3 pints before it blows.  ;)  RDWHAHB and build up an inventory.
I know, it's always such a bummer. My lagers are tasty from the day I tap them, but those last few pints are as clear at the German lagers I strive to make. I just wish the whole keg could be like that.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Kegs on sale
« on: April 15, 2015, 09:05:03 AM »
Those are excellent prices for new kegs! I paid $82.50 at AIH, and I though that it was a good deal. I have found the kegs to be good quality. Jump on this if you need kegs.
AIH is coming down in price too.  I ordered a new corny for $75 on Tuesday.  Haven't got a look at it yet though.
Definitely inspect it before throwing the box it came in away. A friend of mine had to send one back because it had some rust spots inside. The price you pay for cheap Chinese stainless...
As much as cheap kegs are appealing, nothing beats the AEB kegs. I wish I could afford to buy 10 of those suckers.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hop sale
« on: April 15, 2015, 09:01:40 AM »
How good is year old hops going to be that have been frozen? Pretty much identical to this year's upcoming crop? I'm really tempted to buy this, but just a tad leery...
Last year's Mittelfruh were 2.7% AA, or something super low like that...

Equipment and Software / Re: BS decoction setting
« on: April 14, 2015, 06:03:31 AM »
I'm not sure it really does add that much color...have you honestly noticed a color difference between a non-decocted and decocted beer? Kai did a couple decoction videos showing color differences. What I took from it is that it doesn't add much, if any, color.
I wouldn't believe for a second that a beer like Ayinger Altbarisch dunkel is 100% Munich II. There has to be some caramunich/debittered black malt in there for color.

Ingredients / Re: Vienna Water?
« on: April 13, 2015, 06:49:24 AM »
I use pretty soft water to really let the Vienna malt character shine. I go between 50 and 80ppm chloride with calcium chloride and that's it. It makes the calcium around 40-50ppm and I don't worry about sulfate. This is with RO water to start. The amber color of the grist should put your pH in the perfect range with that profile.

I try not to eat anything crazy spicy too soon before bedtime. Not from gastric distress but from the stimulant effect. I'll toss and turn all night. It's like drinking coffee.

I guess I'm one of those lucky souls who are not bothered by caffeine.  My body has given up complaining about hot and spicy foods too.  It used to drive my wife nuts that I could drink 4 cups of coffee at a party and then fall asleep before her.   ;D

What kinda nerd drinks 4 cups of coffee at a PARTY?

I'm not often bothered by heartburn either...occasionally. But as far as spicy food goes, it's the way out that really bothers me typically. I'm talking like, breaking a sweat, hot. I really enjoy the spice, but that next morning isn't too much fun.

Ingredients / Re: Is German magnum a noble hop?
« on: April 07, 2015, 01:22:34 PM »
Huh...I thought Hersbrucker was regarded universally as noble. Oh well, they're good hops for German styles. I also have a pound of Magnum to use for bittering. Might as well use high alpha to save on vegetal matter in the wort.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Mead Fermentation questions
« on: April 03, 2015, 11:38:43 AM »

Speaking of wasted mead - my biggest blunder was putting a 14% semi-sweet mead on tap at a house party. After the pale ale kicked everyone started pulling pints of mead. On one hand it was nice seeing people enjoy my home brew, on the other hand I realized I just had $75 of honey drunk down in an evening.

ugh, that is painful.  not that i don't have more than I can drink, but still.  I couldn't even bring myself to give away 5 bottles of my best for NHC this year.  Share with dad on Father's Day, with wife when she's feeling OK - otherwise the rest is usually mine.

The worst part was some of the people I didn't even know well (friends of friends, old College classmates, etc). And people didn't seem to heed the ABV despite being posted. Hell one 100lbs or so girl polished off 2 pints of it before realising it was 14%.

If I'm not mistaken that same party my best friend snuck into the basement to raid my case of Heady Topper - people must have caught on and the next morning clean up involved dumping several partially drunk cans... sigh. To be fair though I met my girlfriend to be that night so I suppose thats a wash haha.
Your girlfriend to be? Is she not your girlfriend anymore?

Damn, $75 worth of mead drank by (probably) mostly unappreciative [of the mead] drunk people. Depending on how long you aged it, I would not have put that on tap! And mead on tap seems funny to me anyway. It's such a special drink, I only open a bottle every 4-6 months. Although, I would like to drink it more I need to get brewing some.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Mead recipes
« on: April 03, 2015, 11:34:28 AM »
I think mead almost always has to be backsweetened if you don't want it dry. It's hard to get it to finish where you want to get the right amount of sweetness. Then again, the addition of fruit really helps, if potassium sorbate is used to keep it from fermenting the fruit after you add it to secondary.
I've yet to make a mead with Orange Blossom, but it sounds really good.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: WY2278 in a BoPils?
« on: March 27, 2015, 09:55:52 AM »
Pilsner Urquell is in brown bottles now...I was surprised to find out it's not as, or at all, skunky.

Wow! That's nice to know. I have not purchased PU in years because of the packaging.  I rarely check the imported section of my local beer store these days because there is such a huge selection of fresh craft beer.
I still buy Weihenstephaner and Ayinger...they're always really good. I wish Spaten would get with it and go to brown bottles...such a waste of good beer. Otherwise, if you get some of the lesser known German imports, they're almost always sh!te tasting (STALE). I'd still prefer those beers over most IPAs and stouts that we get fresh here in the US tired of those styles. And I want to see more black IPA on the market!

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