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Messages - bigchicken

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Equipment and Software / Re: Cloudy StarSan
« on: December 14, 2013, 11:49:13 AM »
I've had this same cloudiness clear up after a couple hours of sitting out. Sometimes my starsan mix will cloud up the second its mixed up to use.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Black Friday and cyber Monday
« on: November 27, 2013, 09:12:47 PM »
I have been watching this site.
They're doing a good job of posting sale info.

Homebrewer Bios / Re: Brewer's Bio: William Powers
« on: November 16, 2013, 10:01:44 AM »
Welcome to the forum! Good to see another Nebraskan on the site.

Ingredients / Re: Raisin Addition
« on: November 13, 2013, 04:12:07 PM »
I'll take a swing...

Yes, you get lots of raisin and rum flavor in the final beer.

The rum leftover is also pretty wicked too.

Thanks Drew! I appreciate that your club posted the recipe on the site.
I ended up soaking the raisins in Crown Royal instead of rum (thought I had a bottle and didn't, so made due with what I like). It smelled amazing after being in the refrigerator about 2 days. I added the raisins to the boil, but held what little Crown didn't soak into the raisins for myself. That was the smoothest whiskey I've ever had! I normally don't drink my whiskey straight, but that was too good to dilute with anything including ice cubes. I'll keep brewing variations of this just to have the excuse to make the raisin soaked liqueur again!

The Pub / Re: So I am out in the garage brewing today
« on: November 13, 2013, 04:00:24 PM »
It is November and we were having a wind free 60 degree bananna belt day

the boil is going I just finished skimming hot break off and I see this thing
that I thought was a spider dangling by my hat I grabbed my hat
and swatted it was a HONEY BEE!.....I am thinking wow this is
so i picks her up and takes her outside (tactfully avoiding the
stinger that was being deployed in a futile attempt to snag me)  I set
her down and she disappears....I go back to the garage and then much
to my amazement I am visited by 5 -6 more honey bees.  They were detecting
the sugar fumes and there is NOTHING blooming for them to eat and the warm day
had them active.  It was way strange.  ???

I brewed on Sunday and fought little hornet-like bees all day. They were too big for a sweat bee, but smaller than the normal "mean" bees we get here in Nebraska. I had a little Crown Royal sitting out that had raisins soaking it in. Those bees came in with the smell of the mash, but when I brought out the Crown they were diving into what little of it I had. I was picking out drunk bees all day. Didn't bother me, just wanted that raisinized whiskey mix.

Ingredients / Re: Raisin Addition
« on: November 07, 2013, 04:05:46 PM »
Bigchicken, I have a raisin oatmeal cookie amber recipe that doesn't use raisins and you would swear that it does. It came from bugeater in Omaha. I think he is on thebrewingnetwork forum. But if you want the recipe I can give it. This is one awesome beer.

Thanks! I will let you know on the recipe. It's too late for me to change much now with the grain bill. I had to order it a while back so what I've got is what I got. If I don't like my results, I'll get back to you for that recipe for the next attempt.

For my imperial porter fermented with WLP530 - I caramelized 1 pound of raisins ala Lost Abbey (torched them till blistered and smoldering) then pureed the batch with wort drawn from the kettle. The pulp went into the hop bag at 60 minutes.

The porter may mask the raisin flavor. Only time will tell.

I thought about doing this same procedure, but I'm worried it will put too much raisin flavor in the beer. I'm wondering if boiling them whole in a bag will produce enough flavor, though. I'm looking for the flavor without going overboard. I know I could have used some crystal malts that would give a raisin like flavor, but thought it would add the Christmas beer touch by having real ones. Too many decisions!

I'm also at a loss about soaking them in rum in the first place. If I don't add the rum back to the mix later, will anything really make it in for flavor boiling the raisins the whole boil?

Ingredients / Raisin Addition
« on: November 06, 2013, 04:17:58 PM »
I'm getting ready to brew this weekend and plan to make an Oatmeal Raisin Cookie beer loosely based off the Maltose Falcons version here:

According to this recipe, the raisins were added to a mesh bag and put into the boil. The raisins were rum soaked prior.
My questions with this are:
1. By boiling the raisins, will they add much flavor? I've read where caramelizing them or adding to a secondary can produce stronger flavors, but how much more flaovor?
2. Will any of the rum flavor make it into the beer if the raisins are just soaked in it? Would it be better to add the rum back in at flame out or at bottling?

I appreciate any feedback you all can provide on this.

The Pub / Re: Gotta give props to My Beautiful Wife
« on: November 02, 2013, 08:38:30 PM »
That's a fantastic chicken. Fine specimen!
I like her work.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: High school brewing class
« on: November 02, 2013, 09:48:50 AM »
That's a tough one. I can see the scientific learning value, but at that age I would have been brewing beer in abandoned barns near home and then drinking it.

Beer Recipes / Re: Christmas Vacation Ale
« on: October 31, 2013, 04:49:39 PM »
I personally think 2lb of caramel 60 will be too much. I'd cut it in half for a warmer. Let us know how it turns out.

Zymurgy / Re: New AHA Member Can't Login to Member Content!
« on: October 27, 2013, 08:01:46 PM »
I'm having the same issue and joined a week ago. I've been trying from my phone, though. Right after I paid, I was able to login from my laptop once. I thought I'd give it a little time and try from my laptop again during the week. My phone may have some browser incompatibility issues.

Ingredients / Re: Spices for Winter Warmer - boil or steep?
« on: October 26, 2013, 07:48:29 AM »
I prefer unspiced winter warmers, myself. A higher mash temp and the use of some interesting grains can give the subtle taste that there may be a bit of spice. But I like my warmers to "warm" me. So they're higher in alcohol.
When I make spiced beers, I always add the spices at flameout. I feel spices are all depending on personal preference. I think your recipe looks solid without spices, so I'd go lightly on them. You won't have the alcohol or IBUs to mask them if you overdo them.

Zymurgy / Zymurgy Windows Phone app?
« on: October 24, 2013, 11:04:58 AM »
I just joined the AHA and am wondering if there is any plan to bring an app to Windows Phone? With their 8.1 version due out soon, it is supposed to be much easier for developers.


But am I the only one who thinks that APA/IPA is actually hard? In my area, it seems like if you can brew a passable IPA or APA, you'll be a shoo in for a gold medal. Almost makes me want to brew one!

I've had this too. I can make a good Blonde, but add some hops and I don't know what happens. I've only made one good IPA to date and it was an extract batch.
I also have a rough time with Browns and Dunkleweizen. Always watery or over powering.
Easiest beers to me have been Old Ale (won a gold on an only 3 month old version- first comp ever entered) and Stouts.

I should note I don't lager or do sours. Nor do I pay attention to water chemistry. I knew I'd be moving so never dialed in on the water. I figure that lesson will be coming soon.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Fruit flies in airlock
« on: October 10, 2013, 07:24:32 AM »
At what point would you all be concerned with a fruit fly caused infection? I had one little demon fruit fly crash into my rehydrated yeast this weekend and instantly drown I pulled him out, but pitched the yeast anyway. I had no other yeast option other than bread. Its a Saison fermenting at 75. Fermentation was active in only 3 hours.
Surprisingly, the fruit flies are avoiding my carboy.

So you knowingly pitched a vinegar fly into your wort? Sorry, but there's no way I would do that! They're covered with acetobacter.
Just one fruit fly will instantly give a funky taste to a glass of beer. I drink from a lidded stein in fruit fly season.

But acetobacter requires oxygen, so assuming fermentation starts quickly and oxygen is kept out after - one fruit fly probably won't have an effect. I'm suspicious about one fruit fly turning a glass of beer funky. That one might be all in your head. There just isn't enough time for acetobacter to turn beer unless it sits for a few days.

Thanks. I'm hoping it was a "clean" fruit fly! This thread definitely has me inspecting all my equipment and rethinking my processes.

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