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Messages - edward

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Attenuation of RIS
« on: May 05, 2010, 02:55:26 AM »
How does it taste?

Same recipe as last time?

It tastes pretty good.  It is not the same recipe as last time.  This one is a clone (my take) of Bell's Expedition Stout.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Attenuation of RIS
« on: May 05, 2010, 02:54:19 AM »
Have you calibrated your hydrometer lately?

I usually calibrate the low end with water every few months.  It is always reading perfect.  I have never had a reason to doubt it.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Attenuation of RIS
« on: May 05, 2010, 02:52:37 AM »
Why dont more people do Fast Ferment tests?

I had heard of it but never really looked into it.  I finally read it on Kaiser"s site and I may do it my next brew.  I usually have the problem of being slightly over attenuated.  Then again I have never made a beer this big before.

Ingredients / Re: My babies
« on: May 04, 2010, 10:32:08 AM »
I only have three plants.  One is 2 ft tall, one is 3ft tall, and another is 8 ft tall.  I do need to prune off some of the excess shoots though.  Plants grow well early here, but towards the end of summer there is just not enough sunlight.

I ran three lines of twine for each rhizome from the ground to the eaves of the house, which is about 18 ft.  Last year none of the plants made it to the eaves, but I think this year it will be a formality.  I told my wife that I may need to run more twine this year and she gave me the stare of death.

I dont like the taste of Stevia either.  Xylitol on the other hand is pretty good.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Attenuation of RIS
« on: May 04, 2010, 10:11:12 AM »
I mashed at 146 for 90 minutes.  I did three sparges to get the boil volume.  I did a temperature ramp with the sparges though.  146 to 154 to 160.  Boiling the whole time after the first sparge.

My last RIS on this same system came in at about 75%.  The OG was much lower though, maybe around 1.106.

All Grain Brewing / Attenuation of RIS
« on: May 04, 2010, 09:30:33 AM »

I mashed 24 lbs of grain, sparge 12 gallons of water, and boiled down to 5.5 gallons.  My OG was 1.113 - I pitched two packets of dry yeast (Notty).   After 3 weeks my gravity was at 1.042, I pitched 2 lbs of sugar and 2 packets of champagne yeast.  After another 3 weeks the gravity was still at 1.042 (i.e. the champagne yeast ate only the sugar).  I was rousing the yeast every day.

The overall attenuation was ~65%. Its been in the secondary for 3 months and the gravity reading has not changed.  I think the ABV is ~12.5%.  I was hoping that 3 months in the secondary would drop the gravity by another 4 to 6 points.

At this point I am debating whether or not to pitch more yeast or to just bottle it. Time is not an issue for me.  I am just worried about the beer being too sweet.  Although, the last sample I took did not taste overly sweet. 

If I pitch more yeast would I need to re-aerate and transfer back to a primary?  I was thinking about adding maybe three more packets of dry yeast to see if I could drop the gravity into the 1.035 range.

Opinions are welcomed!

Commercial Beer Reviews / Re: Double Bastard
« on: February 15, 2010, 03:02:01 PM »
2008 DB was a whole let better than 2009 DB in my opinion.  Not nearly the alcohol or caramel coming through, hop character was much better as well.

Equipment and Software / Re: Brew kettle thoughts
« on: February 15, 2010, 02:45:38 PM »
Go for the 15g.  If you make anything over 1.100 in a 10g pot you will wish you had the 15.  I went with Aluminum personally, once you condition it you wont have any worries. Mine has a 1/4" wall thickness and only cost about $80 with shipping.  The lid is $10 extra.

You can get the 20 gallon for only $5 more.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: A "modified" starter
« on: February 11, 2010, 04:47:09 PM »
Interesting concept Kai.  I dont know what I think about leaving wort laying around for a day though, even if you keep it sanitized/covered.  Its pretty similar to what I had in mind, except instead of leaving the wort in the pot I would keep it in the fridge at pitching temp (45F) in a fermenter. 

I only use buckets (6.5g and 7.9g) so I was thinking of 1) pitching the yeast into 3.5 gallons of wort into the small fermenter, 2) wait 24 hours, 3) add 2 gallons of wort to the small fermenter, 4) stir up, 5) transfer the wort/fermenting beer back and forth to get it thoroughly mixed.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: A "modified" starter
« on: February 11, 2010, 01:37:39 PM »

I'm brewing 10 gallons of a German Pils with an OG ~1.048, using the Wyeast Pilsen Lager.

It seems like everyone is universally against the simple sugar add.  I have heard a few negative things about using simple sugars but mostly concerning the lack of nutrients. 

I had already considered steeping some grain but the only grain I have on hand is for this batch coming up.

Another thing I had considered since I am using two fermenters is to pitch the all the yeast into one fermenter, wait 24 hours, and then thoroughly mix the two batches together.  I would get 24 hours of yeast growth in fermenter #1 which should generate enough yeast to ferment both batches.

My most likely course of action will be to dilute the starter to a lower gravity, split it, and pitch it.

Yeast and Fermentation / A "modified" starter
« on: February 11, 2010, 05:54:55 AM »
I made a newbie mistake last week when I bought supplies for this weeks 10 gallon batch of pilsner and I dont have quite enough DME for the starter.  Mr. Malty recommends a 5.7 liter starter and I only have enough DME for 5 quarts (4.7 liters) at 1.040.  I dont have a stir plate so I use the intermittent shaking method.

My question is this:  Would adding corn sugar or brown sugar to the starter hurt the vitality of the yeast during the fermentation?  I can add plenty of yeast nutrient in the starter to help make up for not using DME. If I do add sugar to the starter it would be ~18% of the total fermentables in the container.

Is there a type of sugar that I should or should not be used?  Would my 4.7 liter starter be big enough?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Homebrew Shops Plus and Minus
« on: February 10, 2010, 04:57:45 AM »
You may also want to start off with a co-op.  Contact all the local homebrew clubs and start off with bulk orders and then work your way into an actual storefront.  You can operate the co-op out of your house until you get set up.

There is no LHBS within 90 miles of me and even that one is crap.  I order everything online except for bulk grain, which is where the co-op comes in.  I guess technically the guy running the operation is sort of like a store (he does carry yeast, sanitizer, and a few specialty grains), but he doesn't order grain until the bulk order hits 500lbs.

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