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Messages - theDarkSide

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: An extremely important reminder
« on: July 14, 2015, 10:16:01 AM »
Is it a reminder to not go to work for a brewery that doesn't have insurance?

Is that a possibility?  I don't and never will own a business so I just don't know.

Equipment and Software / Re: Cleaning Blowoff Tubes
« on: July 14, 2015, 10:11:39 AM »
I have a carboy cap with 1/2" tubing on the larger port for my blowoff.  To clean, I soak in Oxyclean and rinse.  Since I only need about 2-3ft for my tube, I'll replace it frequently, especially if it was just used on a active blowoff. 

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: How long to let a starter cook?
« on: July 13, 2015, 01:38:41 PM »
It's a one liner starter of WLP002 thats been showing some life (made it around 9:30am this morning). Basically I'm debating if I should pitch it around midnight tonight or let the wort sit in a corny overnight and pitch in the morning (so 22 hour starter/delay pitch or 14hr starter pitched as soon as the wort hits 70f).

The beer is pretty light, 1.033 ordinary bitter. 

I'd wait until morning, but that's me.  For a 1.033 beer though, the vial alone would probably have been enough.  So I guess 14 hours is may be ok...basically waking the yeast up.  5 gallon batch right?

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: How long to let a starter cook?
« on: July 13, 2015, 12:56:07 PM »
Depends on the size of the starter and the style I'm brewing.  For your average ale, I will pitch at high krausen, which for me is around 18 hours.

For lagers and larger ale starters, I'll step them up and ferment them all the way out, crash in the fridge, decant the wort and pitch the yeast.

Pitching at 14 hours to me seems a little short.  How long before you starter got going?

Getting started on Fireball Cider and Hard lemonade for a homebrew event in NH coming in September. 

Have a Helles going right now, going to reuse that yeast in an Octoberfest, then again in a Doppelbock.

Equipment and Software / Re: New Mash Tun
« on: July 10, 2015, 10:35:34 AM »
I've also heard that the ball valve should be removed from the tun and boiled from time to time to clean it thoroughly, as residue can build up on it.  Never have done that but considering it now.  Anyone else familiar with or do this?

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I do it every 5 years or so.
Crap...that means mine was due about 3 years ago :)

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Spencer Trappist Ale
« on: July 08, 2015, 05:58:26 AM »
Oh boy one of those Boston area people who thinks anything outside of 495 is the western part of the state! ;)
It is...just like anything south of the NH/MA border is "The South".  Just not the Deep South...that would be Connecticut. ;)

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Yeast shipped warm.
« on: July 02, 2015, 06:30:19 AM »
Since the yeast are dormant in their packaging and there are no sugars or oxygen, I'm guessing the heat will kill off a few of them.

Have you tried getting your yeast from Morebeer?  With their distribution center in Penn., the transit time to Maryland should be minimal.  Keystone Homebrew has pretty quick turnaround time too. 

Other than that, doing a starter would be your best bet.

Equipment and Software / Re: Fermentation Chamber suggestions
« on: June 30, 2015, 05:48:15 AM »
I use better bottles in a chest freezer and just lift them out carefully when I need to transfer.  I also put them in milk crates so I don't compress the BB when lifting.  On kegging/bottling day, I'll take the carboy out and put it on the table, then the time I spend setting up my keg, mixing up sanitizer and getting everything ready to go is enough for the small amount to resettle.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I like the Brewing Network, but....
« on: June 25, 2015, 01:39:43 PM »
By the way PTE just won best beer, AGAIN! Feel free to join the BN and read my rant about that over there.

I just saw that and said, "Jim must be drinking early today" :)

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I like the Brewing Network, but....
« on: June 25, 2015, 01:18:11 PM »
So, is the BN a business or a club, or is it both?  The problem isn't that the BN has active membership or that the BN has won several years in a row.  No one is booing the individual brewers that choose to enter under the BN name.  The problem is that the whole conference has turned into a BN marketing campaign.  The first evening event of the week is ticketed BN party, then BN is featured prominently in the exhibition hall selling merch, then BN wins the competition that they happen to be streaming and Justin gets up on stage to further promote the brand (no, not everyone should talk either or the banquet would be too long).  Sure, the GC could change things, but Justin also has influence there.

Did you read the second paragraph on Justin's post?  They get a booth in trade for providing this service to the AHA, which would either have to do it themselves or not at all.  How is the Brewing Network having a booth, selling merch any different from every other vendor in there? 

The BN anniversary party used to be separate, celebrating each anniversary date after the BN started in June 2005.  Once they started doing remotes from the conference, it made sense to do the BNA party during that week, outside the official dates of the conference (last year was a special circumstance).  What about all the other events on Tuesday and Wednesday...should we take them off the AHA site as well?

I disagree with not having everyone speak too.  I wish WHALES and Mark Schoppe (love the helmet by the way) would have said's definitely their time to enjoy. 

And booing during the COTY announcement is booing those brewers who won, even if just by association.    Who would want to go up on stage to accept the award and be boo'd?  Kinda takes the fun out of it.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I like the Brewing Network, but....
« on: June 25, 2015, 05:36:43 AM »
What doesn't make it seem unimportant is the name, Club of the Year sounds like a big deal.  I would be perfectly happy renaming the Gambrinus award Club of the Year, and calling the club with the most points in the competition the Gambrinus award winner or some other name.

So think about it.  Do we want to recognize the club with the most points in the competition or not?  If not, what should we be recognizing?
Rename Gambrinus to Homebrew Club of the Year and call the current COTY the "Juggernaut" award.  I even have the trophy picked out:

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I like the Brewing Network, but....
« on: June 25, 2015, 05:29:16 AM »
Why is everyone so butt hurt over some booing?

Does no one here watch sports? Do winners not get booed all the time? It's par for the course, it is to be expected. I see the BN club like the Yankees; keep on booing and they will just keep on winning.

Statements like this get you removed from my Christmas card list (Red Sox fan).  ;D  Only thing worse would be being compared to the Cardinals (just kidding Amada).

I hope we never see the hatred that people have towards sports rivals in homebrewing.  Although a lot of people are in clubs and compete against one another, I've always seen homebrewing as a community trying to advance the hobby and brew some great beer, mead, cider, etc.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I like the Brewing Network, but....
« on: June 24, 2015, 01:52:17 PM »
You lost me with the SF Giants comment...thanks a lot for the Panda  ::)

Well said Justin.  I think what burns me the most is due to these perceptions, mis or otherwise, there are fellow BN Army members taking the hit for brewing great beer and trying to be proud of the job they are doing as a club.  Also, it is unfair to the BN company to be taking a PR hit for something you and your staff have nothing to do with.  As I have mentioned in this thread, I have won 1st and 2nd round medals under the BN Club when I wasn't part of a local club.  Since joining a local club, I always enter under that, even though I'm the only one that competes on a regular basis and chances for COTY or Gambrinus are non-existent.  I also admit that when it comes to the BN, I tend to be a little protective.  You guys got me back into brewing (after some horribly bad early experiences) and I developed many new relationships with brewers that wouldn't have been available without the BN.

I've sent my thoughts to the Competition Committee and wait to see how this all pans out, but no one can blame you if you decide to pull the BN name form the club.  You've spent years developing your brand and have to protect it.  It would be easy to sit here and say "screw them", but in the end, that accomplishes nothing.

With that said, I look forward to seeing you guys out on the East Coast next year and oh...suck it JP!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I like the Brewing Network, but....
« on: June 24, 2015, 05:30:09 AM »
How much booing did the rest of you in attendance hear? I didn't hear a lot; less than some of the previous 4 years. I saw some eyerolls; probably did it myself. I heard some comments. Booing? Sounded like a handful.
I didn't attend but based on the livestream broadcast when I was listening live, it was worse than previous years.  Maybe the microphones were positioned in a way they picked up the high concentration of people that were booing.  Or maybe they picked up the one guy who was booing really loud and stormed out like a 3 year old.

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