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Messages - dee

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Equipment and Software / Re: Best wort chiller for the money?
« on: July 27, 2011, 05:32:36 PM »
I bought this model on sale when I outgrew my immersion chiller and I'm quite pleased.  I'm able to get 20 gallons down to 65 within 15 minutes by pumping ice water through the chiller with a fountain pump.

I outfitted it with cam-lock quick disconnects from and have a high volume, easy to clean and easy to assemble chilling system for under $150.  That's priceless when brewing in the Georgia heat.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash schedule for no boil Berliner Weiss
« on: July 20, 2011, 12:26:47 PM »
I've had success (i.e. it tastes good) with the following (almost no boil):

I use a pure lactobacillus culture (one smack pack) to make a 800 ml starter (1.050) (stir plate, 100F) 2 days prior to fermentation.

The Mash:
Single decoction, 150F with hops  in the mash.  After thirty minutes I pull enough (enough to reach mash out) thick mash and bring to a boil. Main mash gets a total of 60 minutes. Add thick mash to main mash to reach mash out.  Collect wort. I cool to 115F and pitch lacto. I give it a day head start and then pitch the yeast.   


I'm ready to brew another Berliner Weisse and wanted to make sure I understood your procedure.  You are making a lacto-only starter and then pitching that a day in advance of the yeast correct?.  I'd pitched the lacto and let it go for day on my last attempt but I didn't make a starter.  I'd hoped for a little more sourness on my previous attempt but nonetheless, it was very tasty.  Am I correct in assuming the lacto starter will markedly increase the sourness?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How many people use hop bags?
« on: July 20, 2011, 12:46:01 AM »
Next to nothing gets through 200 microns so I don't think it's necessary to devise a progressive system.  When you harvest your yeast there will be no visible hop or break material.  Try them.  You will not be disappointed.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How many people use hop bags?
« on: July 19, 2011, 11:26:06 PM »
The 100 micron screens clogged more often so I went to 200.  You may have to clean them with the hose (spray water from the backside)while draining if you have lots of pellet hop material floating in the wort.  That's why it's best to have two screens sanitized and ready should one screen clog.  Almost no trub get through the screen.  In fact, I never secondary a beer and go straight to the keg.  I also harvest yeast with zero hop material and negligible trub.  Regardless, this is a must in my opinion if you ferment in buckets.  They fit perfectly inside your bucket and are easy to use.  The price is great too.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How many people use hop bags?
« on: July 19, 2011, 08:00:04 PM »
If you use buckets, these are the best way to filter trub, hops and other break material from your fermenter.  They are cheap, easy to clean and sanitize and at 200 microns they really work.  They also help aerate especially when using a March pump to pump wort in a fermenter.  I've used the same two filters for years without fail.  Carboys are dangerous, expensive and more difficult to handle and clean.  I wouldn't go back to a carboy for anything.

Beer Recipes / Re: Dampfbier
« on: July 01, 2011, 07:00:59 PM »
It's always good to revive this thread around this time of year!  I'm going to brew my annual dampfbier in the next few weeks. I'm going to double decoct mine this year. I'm also going to pitch with a portion of the slurry from one of my recent weissbiers (as traditional dampfbier brewers would have likely done at one time). I will likely ferment a bit higher than I normally do with weissbier yeast. I'm thinking between 68-70.

Dampfbier should be consumed relatively young like its wheat-based cousin hefeweizen. I'd say that once its clear, it's ready to go.

Dampfbier is extremely refreshing on hot summer days and usually pleases a crowd. It's a great mid to late summer brew!

Thanks again for reviving an interesting style PP.  It's so easy, tasty and provides near instant gratification.  Long live Dampfbier! 

Beer Recipes / Re: Dampfbier
« on: July 01, 2011, 06:57:35 PM »
Since it's brewed with weizen yeast you can drink it with minimal conditioning.  I generally go from primary to keg and let it sit for a week at serving temps before pouring a liter but I've also gone from kettle to glass before in 6 days with no detectable flaws.  WLP380 will take it from 1.048 to 1.011 in 3 days.  There is nothing faster in the universe except a berliner weisse!  

Beer Recipes / Re: Dampfbier
« on: June 30, 2011, 02:32:29 PM »
Thought that I would bump this thread back up.  The dog days of summer is the perfect time to brew a dampfbier (temp controlled of course) and I just kegged up 10 gallons for Independence Day.  Even if you are not a fan of weizen this beer really hits the spot on a hot afternoon.

Sounds like summmer to me...

"Dampfbier (literally: steam beer) is a centuries-old style from the region of the Bavarian Forest, the southeastern portion of Bavaria, near the Czech border. It is an all-barley ale, usually deep golden to light amber in color, with a unique feature: It is warm-fermented with Weissbier yeast at a temperature above 70°F (21°C), which gives the beer a slightly phenolic aftertaste. Brewed mostly in the summer, it is medium-bodied, very mildly hopped, and low in effervescence."

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash schedule for no boil Berliner Weiss
« on: June 21, 2011, 01:49:16 PM »
I'm just reporting back my first Berliner Weiss results.  I was pleased overall and this is the easiest, quickest and most refreshing beer I've brewed.  I didn't get quite the sourness I was expecting and that's probably due to only giving the lacto a 24 hour head start.  I've already kegged it and was wondering if I could add another tube of lacto, take it off carb and warm it up to get a little more sourness.  I could brew another one I guess and let it go a little longer.  I actually pitched WB-06 at 75 degrees and none of the normal clove/banana came through.  This is is a very interesting style and I will be brewing this often.

Hey Dee, I can't answer your question, but you could answer mine... ;D I do 10gal batches, and plan to get a 40 plate chiller rel soon. How quick can you chill with 60-65* water?
I ended up using both the immersion chiller and the plate chiller.  I recirculated the ice water through the plate chiller using a fountain pump and let the immersion chiller water exit into my garden (terrible drought in Georgia right now so the water was not wasted).  I used 120lbs of bulk ice ($9)and probably 45 gallons of water.  I kept adding ice to the chiller water as the return water reentered.  The total time from boil to 60 degrees for this 20 gallon batch of Kolsch was 25 minutes in 100 degree weather.  The whirlpooling return hitting the the 40 degree immersion chiller worked well.  I was worried the IM might work against the plate chiller if I didn't let the heated water exit the system.  All in all, it was well worth the effort and going from 10-20 gallon batches really makes the brew day productive (5 hrs. from grind to cleanup).  I have a bazooka screen but still used a hop bag to avoid clogging the chiller but I'm not sure how free floating hops would work.  I flushed the chiller in every direction with star san and didn't see any trub.  This is my first experience with pumps and plates but it seemed to work.  I used two separate mash tuns and batch sparged.  I figured the sparging process would go faster that way and helped me get to a boil faster.   Next purchase is twin jet burners.  Either way it worked.

I'm stepping up from 10 to 20 gallon batches (lots of friends involved in the consumption) and I've been using a 50 foot 1/2 inch copper wort chiller and pumping ice water through it.  It's been sufficient and usually takes 25-30 minutes to get to pitching temps.  I just purchased a 40 plate wort chiller and plan on pumping ice water through it with a fountain pump.  Will I need both the immersion chiller and plate chiller for that much wort or are the plate chillers as effective as advertised?  

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash schedule for no boil Berliner Weiss
« on: May 25, 2011, 03:34:37 PM »
After years of trying to keep bacteria out of my brauhaus you've talked me into making a Berliner Weisse.  I finally broke down and purchased some bacteria-only equiptment and I plan on using the no boil method stated above.

My questions for the Berliner aficionados are, does it really matter what yeast I use?  Other than attenuation levels, would the yeast matter?  Can you taste any yeast character beyond the sour.  I have fresh harvested WHP 515 Antwerp Ale available and it is very neutral even at high temps.  I thought that would be my best choice.  I have WY1007 ready as well.  What about a weizen yeast like WB06 or WLP380?  Would citrus zest in a hop bag after kegging come through.  Thanks for you input!       

I have a lot of Vienna, Munich and wheat on hand and wanted to try something different.  Kolsch seems to be a yeast defined style so I was wondering if anyone else has had success with a non-pils based version.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I've never had a Kolsh
« on: April 07, 2011, 04:13:21 PM »
I do the same.  The gelatin works and never causes any issues.  By the time it's carbed, cold and lagered for 2 weeks you have an excellent example of the style.  029 is great yeast. 

Beer Recipes / Re: Fuller's London Porter. Help me make it.
« on: March 09, 2011, 07:27:55 PM »
I'm reporting my results after having brewed and kegged this recipe.  It is quite close.  I had unusually high efficiency (88%) so my original gravity came in a few points high but terminal gravity came out within range.  The esters are there even though I fermented at 64 for 75% of the fermentation.  Thanks again for the input on a great malty beer.

17.00 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) UK (3.0 SRM) Grain 75.56 %
2.75 lb Brown Malt (65.0 SRM) Grain 12.22 %
2.00 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 60L (60.0 SRM) Grain 8.89 %
0.75 lb Chocolate Malt (350.0 SRM) Grain 3.33 %
95.00 gm Williamette [4.80 %] (60 min) Hops 25.9 IBU
30.00 gm Goldings, East Kent [4.50 %] (10 min) Hops 2.8 IBU

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