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Messages - kgs

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676
Equipment and Software / Re: Drip pan for propane burner?
« on: July 10, 2010, 08:59:06 AM »
It's a non-issue with a big enough pot.  Besides, the wort is sugar based--washes right off.  The burner is high enough that it doesn't "bake" or "carbonize" the spills like a stove-top unit does.
I set my burner and 20 gallon kettle on my patio table (of course, it is sturdy--it's made of steel and tile, not vinyl or plastic)--it makes transfers into the fermenter a breeze after IC/whirlpooling.

Thanks... you're giving me good ideas!


677
Equipment and Software / Re: Drip pan for propane burner?
« on: July 09, 2010, 06:45:02 PM »
This is our landlord's property... not mine to stain or mess up. Boilovers, incidental "stuff"--I realize this is more likely with grilling (I also have a mat under our grill), but just thought it might be nice to keep it clean.

678
I have Monday and Tuesday off and am Home Alone as well those days... so I'm going to brew SOMEthing. I have been thinking about brewing Hard & Hardy, the English barleywine from Brewing Classic Styles, to set aside for the Christmas season. But Denny's Rye IPA came out so good I am tempted to brew it again...

679
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Forced to buy beer
« on: July 09, 2010, 11:52:36 AM »
The dry stout TJ sells for $5.99 is (imho) pretty darn decent. Black Hart or something?? (I do like non-hoppy beers, just not frilly rickrack beers.)  I have paid almost as much for a single of a fancy Spanish stout that wasn't nearly as good. It's not fancy, just dry and sessionable and roasty and all that.


680
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Forced to buy beer
« on: July 09, 2010, 11:27:06 AM »
I'm a female and I find blueberry wheat beer disgusting. Just sayin'. I did finally find a fruit beer I like (DH Aprihops), but probably because it has such relatively heavy hops and malt for a fruit beer. Even Magic Hat # 9 doesn't quite do it for me, though at least I didn't have the urge to spit it out. Though I have liked the Schmaltz brewery beers brewed with figs, dates, etc. ... but that's a very different sort of fruit flavor.


681
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Batches <5gal
« on: July 09, 2010, 11:21:29 AM »
I routinely make half-batches (mostly all-grain at this point) for a variety of reasons. It does take almost as much time, but the physical process is easier and you either end up with a great batch you horde because it's so small or a lame batch you at least have the room to hide in a dark closet hoping it someday improves. Also, if you're working with smaller equipment all around, it's easier to clean... and half as much water comes to a boil faster... and half as much beer cools down faster... and you can really get a good shake on your carboy (especially if you use Better Bottle)... and I can move a lot faster lugging three gallons than 5.5. ;)

Because of the wort-loss issue, I scale to 3 gallons and that actually turns out to be 2.5. Which is fine.

Beersmith conveniently has built-in scaling. Because it doesn't round up or down, after scaling, I generally smooth the numbers to a more rational amount (e.g. I'm not going to ask my LHBS for .97 lbs of a grain :) ). But that's fine too. I prefer entering the recipe in its original size and then scaling it and saving that as a second copy marked as a half-batch, just so I know what I started with.

682
Equipment and Software / Drip pan for propane burner?
« on: July 09, 2010, 11:12:49 AM »
Do any of you use a drip pan or heat-resistant mat under your propane burner (like the Bayou SP10)? If so can you recommend one? I was looking at this:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000NT08PK/

Thanks...

683
Equipment and Software / Re: >5 gallons...how do you all do it?
« on: July 09, 2010, 05:40:31 AM »
euge, that setup is very "green"! Very little water waste. Even the frozen bottles can be refrozen, I assume. Thanks for posting the pump pic. Adding that to my birthday/Santa list.

684
I see it as a way of establishing a "grading curve" so that (as noted above) the scores are meaningful to the brewer. I would also think it ensures that any judging session would have some kind of internal consistency and logic not only for a particular beer, but across beers as they are judged.

685
The Pub / Wart Syrup
« on: July 05, 2010, 09:46:57 AM »
Darn, it's been corrected. As of 8 a.m. PT today, the last paragraph in a NYT article about a trendy ice cream maker referred twice to "wart syrup," as in: "sticky toffee pudding, soaked in wart syrup (unfermented beer)" (with another reference, "Wart Syrup? Really?").

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/04/magazine/04icecream-t.html

I do wonder if it's actually wort, or if it's beer a little farther along in its fermentation process. I live in SF and can check this out...

686
Equipment and Software / Re: Let's talk hop-bags!
« on: July 02, 2010, 02:27:00 PM »
For the kettle, I bought a humongous fine strainer at a restaurant store for $12 that works really well if I'm using some whole hops (which end up acting like a filter). I strain into a bucket and then into the fermenter.

For fermentation, after trying pantyhose and whatnot, I have started filtering post-fermentation, when racking to the bottling bucket, using a sanitized copper Chore Boy wrapped around the end of my autosiphon with a (sanitized) rubber-band. It's one-time use on the Chore Boy, but if you do enough grocery shopping, these show up on sale now and then. It's amazing to see how much gets filtered out.

687
Equipment and Software / Re: >5 gallons...how do you all do it?
« on: June 11, 2010, 05:10:37 PM »
http://www.williamsbrewing.com/BREWER_S_EDGE_40_QUART_BREWKET_P2366C50.cfm

Huh, pretty good deal on that--and would be a good size for me to move UP to!

Those pots are a great price, but are pretty thin. I personally like the thicker bottomed (tri-clad) ones that most of the brewing retailers sell. It seems that most of these are re-branded commercial grade kitchenware pots that you can find a bit cheaper through kitchen supply places. One such brand is Update International. You will have to install your own ball valve though.

The thinness of this pots is an issue, but the weight of some thicker pots is a concern for me as well. The decision tree is versus a well-made pot that is hard to lift and a thin pot I have to watch like a hawk to avoid scorching. Trade-offs abound... and I also like the idea of someone else drilling that hole, since you get one chance to get it right. :)

I'll check out those Update International pots, however, since a trip to a restaurant supply store a couple weeks ago showed me that some triclad-bottom pots weren't too heavy.

688
Equipment and Software / Re: >5 gallons...how do you all do it?
« on: June 11, 2010, 02:03:22 PM »
I only brew 5 gallon batches myself at the moment.  I'm using a 10 gallon kettle like this:

http://www.williamsbrewing.com/BREWER_S_EDGE_40_QUART_BREWKET_P2366C50.cfm


Huh, pretty good deal on that--and would be a good size for me to move UP to!

689
Bottling my RyePA at some point this weekend.

690
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Curious...part 2
« on: June 09, 2010, 01:33:51 PM »

As for 3 gallon batches, I would say the big pro of that is 1) as you said, space 2) more variety 3) an untested recipe or 4) something you don't want a lot of.  For awhile, I did 3 gallon batches of untested recipes so that if they were bad, I wouldn't have 2 cases of crap!  I got away from doing that, though, when my daughter was born.  Now, brew days are precious, and you can make 5 gallons in the time it takes you to make 3!  I will still do a 3 batch if it's something I just don't want 2+ cases of.

I do small batches for all of the reasons noted above, plus the ease of the physical process, and for me the big prep on brew day is cleaning/sanitizing, plus organizing the production line, etc. So doing 2 small batches in a row has worked for me. Come to think of it, if I built a second mash tun I could easily mash both batches simultaneously and do two consecutive boils. But whatever gives you a fun brew day is what it's about!

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