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Messages - garc_mall

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And why spme people recomend secondary? When is this used?

I use a secondary for 3 reasons.

1. I am adding additional fermentables, such as fruit.
2. I want to use the yeast cake for a different beer, but don't have time to bottle.
3. I ran out of 6 gallon carboys, and I don't have time to bottle.

Really, reason 1 is the only beer-related reason to rack to secondary. The other ones have to do with time management.

Ingredients / Re: a question about pickling lime v. chalk
« on: May 01, 2012, 05:26:48 PM »
These conversations are where I learn the most. I still don't understand water chemistry as much as I would like, but every time one of these threads come up, I learn a bit more, or a different way of understanding my water chemistry. Thanks you guys.

All Grain Brewing / Re: How does my grist look?
« on: May 01, 2012, 12:21:27 PM »
Looks better than mine, and I am getting 95-100% conversion efficiency according to Kai's chart.

Homebrew Clubs / Re: Our club is starting to mature
« on: April 30, 2012, 09:31:33 AM »
This is completely based off of what I have seen in my homebrew club, so it may or may not apply to you.

Our club has dues, but they are small, just 20$ per year. This is what our dues go to.

Food/Cups for the meeting
Food and Materials for club brews
Name tags for members (You would be surprised how important this is)
6 tap Jockey Box

This year, some of our dues went to renting a 4 tap jockey box for NHC, so we can have 10 taps.

I also think that the dues are a small way to filter out people who are just coming for beer.

That is my 2cents.

Pimp My System / Re: Cheap, functional HERMS
« on: April 29, 2012, 09:02:22 PM »
What a tease. ;)

I need some pics with the lids off, or at least a description of what's going on.


All Grain Brewing / Re: FauxPils Faceoff
« on: April 29, 2012, 09:01:03 PM »
I would like to be considered for this.

Not a judge yet, but I am working through the material so I can judge, and I use decoction on occasion.

Beer Recipes / Re: Low Alcohol Beer Ideas?
« on: April 27, 2012, 01:30:37 PM »
Come find my beer at NHC! It should be about 4%, and I am working on packing in a ton of flavor. I am really hoping to get good feedback on it. I did the base recipe, and it tasted good, going to throw a couple of small changes into it for my next batch in a couple weeks.

Beer Recipes / Re: Low Alcohol Beer Ideas?
« on: April 27, 2012, 09:24:47 AM »
I am going to start off with the disclaimer that I am not an expert, but I have made 2 session beers of between 3-4 percent, and basing my advice on that. I love my session beers, and try to keep at least one available at all times. If you come to NHC, I will have a Mocha Mild that will be on for either club night or the hospitality suite.

Ok, now that's out of the way, here is what I have learned about making tasty low-alcohol beer.

1. American 2-row sucks. It doesn't provide anything to a beer other than fermentable sugars. maybe a couple pounds if you need the enzymes, but really, get rid of regular American 2-row. Use Marris Otter, Golden Promise, or even Belgian Pale malt. Eek out every ounce of flavor you can get in these beers.

2. Character malts are awesome. Munich, Vienna, Biscuit, Aromatic. All of those are really nice to add to a beer. If you are doing a darker beer, look at pale chocolate, dark Munich, special B and the like. Crystal is nice, but I have noticed that the sweetness stands out a lot more in these small beers, I would recommend keeping it under a pound.

3. Mash Higher. I mash my session beers between 154-156, but I have heard of people doing mashes as high as 160-162. You want some unfermentables in there. You could also try no-sparge, I have tasted some really nice beers that no-sparge, and I find the malt flavor is appreciably better. I intend on trying this with my next session beer.

As you may have noticed, the biggest problem I have personally run into, and seen others run into is lack of complexity. The lower alcohol and generally less malt can make for a boring beer if you don't work at it. I make up for this with the above, character yeasts (I like 1968) and interesting hopping. I threw up a recipe in this folder for a Munich mild. That is the beer I have been drinking lately, and it will be the base recipe for the Mocha Mild I am bringing to NHC.

Congrats Alabama, one step closer! And in an election year to boot!

All Things Food / Re: What's For Dinner?
« on: April 24, 2012, 06:54:30 PM »

Nothing too special, slow braised chuck steak in soy sauce, balsamic vinegar, and some herbs. Threw the veggies in after a couple hours. Roasted the potatoes in a mixture of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, mustard, basil and thyme. Having it with "A Dark Night in Munich" a munich dunkel which won in the SA Longshot competition.

All Grain Brewing / Re: No head!?!?
« on: April 24, 2012, 09:12:08 AM »
I used to use two lab grade thermometers that gave very close readings. One was NIST certified (with serial number), the other was NIST traceable. I suspected something was wrong, so I used water baths to determine how far off. Boiling was off 12 and 10 deg F high respectively, ice water bath (correctly done) was 4-5 high on both. talked myself into getting a Thermapen and confirmed they were both 7 deg low at a 150 mash temperature. Those things were all over the place. The Thermapen also confirmed my Ranco probes and ice bath numbers.

That means you were roughly between 130-134 for the 30 minute beta rest. That's in protein degradation temperatures, and I would guess that is what really wiped out your head.

This is what got me excited. Pushing it to all malt will make a good difference all by itself. I would imagine they will tweak the directions too.

However, American customers would notice some subtle changes aimed at improving the quality of the beer.

"We will replace the current malt extracts with a superior quality all-malt concentrate produced at Coopers with a yeast specifically designed for their size kit," he said.

"This will remove the need for a sugar adjunct and will significantly improve the quality of beer that is produced."

All Grain Brewing / Re: No head!?!?
« on: April 23, 2012, 10:50:16 AM »
+1 to pretty much everything in here.

I like to add 4oz of wheat to every beer, and I have noticed that I get better head retention.

If your thermometer read 216 and your wort didn't seem to be boiling, I would attempt to calibrate your thermometer, or get a new one.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Zero Headspace in Carboy
« on: April 23, 2012, 10:29:22 AM »
OK, panic setting in.  Do you think I racked off too much yeast if I sucked it up from the bottom?  I thought it looked like they were in suspension but my gallon jug seems to be fermenting.  I think I'll decant and put back the trub.....

Once you pitched, and the yeast started multiplying, the yeast are everywhere. When you pulled the trub and beer from the bottom, you most definitely got yeast in there, hence the fermentation. There should be no issues, and your beer in the carboy should be fermenting as well on its own. I would let it ferment itself out, and then decant it back into the beer when you rack to secondary or a keg. It should be clean as long as you used good sanitation.

I plan to decant off the wort and use as my next starter.

Hadn't you already pitched the yeast?

When I read this first, I thought you were planning on using that as a starter of whatever yeast you originally used. But if you weren't, you aren't going to be able to use that for a starter, because as Sean said, its going to ferment because you already pitched the yeast.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Question About Batch Sparging
« on: April 22, 2012, 04:26:33 PM »
You basically did a no-sparge.  It won't cause any issues other than the efficiency might have been a little lower than if you'd batch sparged.  Either way works fine but your efficiency will be somewhat higher with batch sparging than no sparging.  With batch sparging (or fly sparging) you're rinsing more sugars out of the grains.

Especially for Session ales, I have found that no-sparging gives a better malt flavor than sparging. I think Gordon Strong makes this point in brewing better beer as well. When I make my next Mild (for NHC) I intend on doing a no sparge in order to give the beer as much body as possible.

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