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Messages - surfin.mikeg

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 14, 2015, 09:55:40 PM »
For Ken and Frank - today Russian River made a delivery of fresh Pliny the Elder around town.  Going to send you one each.  Cheers.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 14, 2015, 09:50:49 PM »
Mike G, tracking says as of 8am ish, your package was out for delivery. I know it's only 4:30 pm out there but I'm hoping you get them soon

Edit to add: now says it was delivered, here's hoping you got it

Hey Frank, I'm thrilled at what I received:


Two German Pils, one fermented with WLP830 and the other with WLP833.  I'm excited to try these as I'm yet to step up and brew a Pilsner (the water, in particular), and here's a chance to taste and compare two really unique yeasts.

A Saison with a blend of 3711&3724.  Nice.

A BCS Märzen with WLP830.  I gotta ask:  what does BCS stand for?

An all Base Märzen: Pils, Munich II, and Vienna with WLP830.  I'm happy to receive these as I don't know the Märzen style.  Very different for me.

And then two local beers from Mad Tree Brewing:  PsycHopathy and the 10.2% Galaxy High.  These are going to work with me; can't wait to share.

Thank you again Frank.  I really appreciate it.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 14, 2015, 09:41:55 PM »
First up is the Sausalito Sunday Sail-Mermaid Saison....

to say the head is thick would be understatement. its a meringue. 3-4 fingers that hangs around forever before settling into the expected nice white lacing.

Hey Ken, I really appreciate the feedback, thank you.  It's rare that I get that detailed feedback & am reading it out loud.  Awesome.

To be honest, it should not have such a huge head on it.  Kinda wondering if the 7 day travel via UPS had a little warmth to it and finished the conditioning?  I targeted right around 2.2 volumes of CO2 on everything.  My temps are right around 65 degrees on all fermenting.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 14, 2015, 03:02:54 PM »
Just received this awesome assortment and wicked cool packaged beer from surfin.mikeg. ! Can't wait to dive in... Received thirsty knots triple reef ale, port jack porter-vanilla rye, close quarters porter- raspberry chocolate, knock down IPA-brown IPA, Sausalito Sunday sail- mermaid saison, five blast smash- aye matey.

Oh so great to see that they made it!!!  You got the prototype packaging; it's all done late-night and so my apologies for the many typos on the written notes.  No need to cold-crash.  Enjoy!  :-)

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 07, 2015, 12:39:29 PM »
MikeG, yours are boxed up, just need to get them out tonight or tomorrow. Tomorrow is likely to spend less time enroute over the weekend

I'm thrilled and cannot wait.  Thank you again.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 07, 2015, 12:38:34 PM »
should be good....whats on the menu?

It's a surprise.  It does includes a first pass at a Brown IPA; here's the OG/FG images:

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: October 07, 2015, 09:27:09 AM »
I dropped off a package for Wort-HOG this morning.  I revamped my approach to homebrewing after the AHA Conference (going for lighter and more balanced flavor across hops/grain/yeast) and I'm hoping to get some feedback. 

I'm happy to reship in smaller containers if anything is broken.  For the curious:

UPS said they no longer mark packages as "Fragile" as it's all automated via barcodes and that it's gotta survive 5 foot drops across conveyor belts.  I have each bomber wrapped in plastic, then 0.5 to 1.5 inch of foam, and then two layers of cardboard.  It's a tight fit.  Five feet is a large drop though.

All Grain Brewing / Re: C40 + C80 = C60?
« on: October 02, 2015, 06:31:43 PM »

Is there a reference for these kind of questions?

I found this:

40- Sweet, caramel, toffee — Drum roasted, crystallized malt; improves foam; enhances viscosity; golden hues
60- Sweet, pronounced caramel — Drum roasted, crystallized malt; improves foam; enhances viscosity; deep golden to red hues
80- Pronounced caramel, slight burnt sugar, raisiny — Drum roasted, crystallized malt; improves foam; enhances viscosity; red to deep red hues

In short, it helps to taste each grain before composing a recipe with it.  Pop a fair amount of it your mouth and chew it up a bit.  Keep in mind that a lot of crystal adds a sweetness that is (IMO) not desirable.  It's rough to brew 5-10 gallon experimental batches in this context (because that's a lot of beer to drink or toss), so I try to brew 1-2 gallon experiments to dial it in and then ramp up.

I think that's a lot of why I prefer UK crystal malts overall. Much broader flavor.

+1 to what Sean says.  Again, taste it first.  Next step would be thinking through percentage usage and at what ABV you are shooting for.   It's easy to go over the top.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Share Your 2015 Brew Season Stock Up
« on: October 01, 2015, 09:46:30 AM »

I keep my grain at a friend's house, so I don't know for sure how much I've got.  A rough guess would be in the 700-1000 lb. range total.

Curious if you use it fast enough before it goes stale, and/or if you have storage advice to keep it fresh?  I don't find it worth the while to stock up unless I'm going out of my way to find something not normally stocked, say organic base malts.

Events / Re: Swap-toberfest '15
« on: September 20, 2015, 08:11:08 PM »
+1 I'm in.  Looking forward to it, thanks.

Pimp My System / Re: Mash-In Grain Hopper
« on: August 27, 2015, 08:46:39 PM »
100% gadget fun.  Is great to see this.

Also:  when picking pot sizes, one gotcha with small batch brewing is to make sure your wort volume can be boiled on your stove.  I can mash in a 3 gallon stock pot, but can only get a rolling boil going with 2 gallons of wort.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Lager Fermentations
« on: August 25, 2015, 06:31:37 AM »
5) I find that noble hops in the full duration of the boil add a very elegant spicy hop flavor that you just can’t get from generic boil hops.  Try it sometime and see.  I think you’ll find that it’s NOT a waste of noble hops to boil for a full 60.  Try it.

This is insightful, thanks.

+1 BIAB.

THis is a great way to experiment;  my last one was brewing the ingredients listed for NB's Fat Tire in simple combinations, blending to taste, and then scaling up.   Learned I really don't care for Munich Malt by doing it this way.

Dry yeast is a little easier to measure out in smaller quantities.

The only odd thing in my setup is a wrapping of small copper tubing for a wort cooler that is pumped with a 12v cpu cooler pump; that works well for getting things chilled quickly.

Equipment and Software / Re: Thermometer probe length
« on: August 16, 2015, 12:06:49 PM »
It also helps to warm the whole thing up by letting it sit for a bit with with the hot water as a precursor to mashing in.
I'd rather just adjust my strike temp to account for the extra few degrees needed to heat up a room temp mash tun. One less step to forget when I'm still half asleep and trying to mash-in.
My thoughts as well. Every time I have tried to preheat my tun, I have missed my mash temp. When I just tell beersmith that my tun and grain are at 72 or wherever, it calculates a strike temp that gets me where I want to be very reliably

I would do the guessing on the calculations if I could get it to work for me, but my variables include outdoor temperature and it didn't work well.  I don't care how long the overall setup, and so I do a dry run to set up dead space, drink coffee, checking fittings, more coffee, then mill and mash in.  The mash water is warming up as the tun sits.

For fun: today is a 6.5 gallon porter, 5.3% ABV.  I'm splitting the fermentation with different yeasts (005, 023), one will be chocolate raspberry and the other maybe left alone.  Have to bottle, and so wanting smaller volume of each style.

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