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Messages - nateo

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Ether smell coming from carboy?
« on: July 23, 2011, 02:53:17 PM »
I'm actually just brewed a Koelsch, and stuck my head in the fermentation freezer a little too far. Definitely some harsh solvent smells. Beer tasted fine going into secondary. My thinking is anything coming out of the airlock is something not in your beer anymore, so it's good the harsh smells are coming out.

"Using a starter makes better beer." <- True (from my experience)

I used to have a lot of problems with head retention and weird flavors. Then I began using starters, and my beers got a lot better in a hurry.

[I drank a lot of that back in the dark ages called the 1980s/early 90s in Utah

Utah sells booze? I was there in 2005 and had a hard time even finding coffee, let alone anything stronger.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Octoberfest
« on: July 22, 2011, 07:45:03 PM »
Oktoberfest, with a 'K'. Deutschland über alles!

All Grain Brewing / Re: Saving the Planet, Going Domestic
« on: July 22, 2011, 12:20:43 PM »
Can anyone verify that European malts are actually made with European barley? N. America grows more 2-row than anywhere else. I know Italian pasta is usually made from wheat from the Dakotas. I suspect the same thing happens with malts. Grown here, shipped there, malted there, shipped back here.

I never use less than 1oz/5gal. I frequently use 2oz/5gal for aggressive oak flavor. I'd recommend oaking and booze-flavoring separately, to taste, instead of soaking the chips.

Pro breweries use "brew length" to describe fermenting capacity. So if they brewed it longer, maybe they just used the extra-big industrial tanks?

All Grain Brewing / Re: Help with Dubbel Trouble
« on: July 22, 2011, 11:49:06 AM »
That's 145 not 154, but otherwise he's right you'll be ok with the single rest.  The step mash would be good too though

I actually recommended 154* because anything under 149* (like 145*) won't gelatinize the starch. If he then does a mashout he'll liberate unconverted starches which may cause issues with his beer.

The original recipe called for steps @ 140* and 160*. Splitting the difference would mean 150*. With the amount of candi syrup in the recipe, I'd mash a little higher than you might for an attenuative all-malt brew.  

All Grain Brewing / Re: High Gravity
« on: July 20, 2011, 07:29:30 PM »
Are you sure it's done fermenting? I don't start counting weeks until it's done fermenting. If the gravity has been at terminal for 3 weeks, then maybe that's too long. If it's still fermenting, 3 weeks isn't long enough.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Help with Dubbel Trouble
« on: July 20, 2011, 07:22:52 PM »
IMO the step mash seems silly with this recipe. If you're truly using malts that need to be step mashed, that'd be a different story. But even continental pils malt should be able to do a single infusion. You'd probably get the same results from a single rest @ 154*

I'm not sure about some of those, but I've had similar issues with bottle infections. I had a run of infections I traced back to both expired starsan and a house bug. Now I use softened water and check the pH with a meter every time I use the starsan. I also alternate between starsan and a pH adjusted bleach solution. 1oz bleach and 1oz vinegar per 5gal. The pH should be between 6.5-7.5. I'll use starsan for the primary, bleach-water-vinegar for secondary/bottling, then switch it up the next batch, bwv for primary, starsan bottling, etc.

I like to use clear plastic tubing so I can easily inspect it for gunk. After a year or so it'll have enough little scratches in it that I'll replace it. But it's pretty cheap.

A long time ago I figured out the spigot on the bottling bucket can be taken apart and cleaned, and I found a bunch of gunk in there, but I couldn't tie that directly to any infection issues.

I probably lose 1/4-1/2gal in the bottom of the kettle. I don't worry too much about that.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash schedule for no boil Berliner Weiss
« on: July 20, 2011, 10:04:42 AM »
IIRC lacto is inhibited at over 7 IBU. I wonder if making a hop tea and adding that a day or two after the lacto culture would increase the sourness?

Skyler - That's a good point about the tons of different interpretations of wits. From Brewing with Wheat, wits were traditionally very tart/sour with very low attenuation, like 40-50%. Then Pierre Celis came along and made something completely different and marketed it as a 'wit.'

Yeah, it finishes low for me as well. Not sure what the deal is with the high FG on that.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Am I over-pitching?
« on: July 16, 2011, 08:51:17 AM »
MrMalty is more of a guesser than a calculator. It's a good guesser that I use all the time with good results, but it's really just a guess. Without actually counting your yeast and testing viability, you have no idea how much yeast you're actually pitching.

The good news is it's basically impossible to overpitch, on a homebrew scale, unless you really try to overpitch. I'm talking like 5 smack packs, and even then it'd probably still make good beer.

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