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Messages - roguejim

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421
General Homebrew Discussion / English malt extracts versus domestic extracts
« on: September 02, 2010, 12:06:31 PM »
For the guys who want to brew English ales from extract(not me), would it be advisable for them to use the canned extracts from England versus the domestic bulk extract at the LHBS?  I mean, brewers tout marris otter/English pale malt for English ales.  So wouldn't it follow that English extracts would be required for a more authentic English ale? 

422
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How fast is too fast to move to all grain?
« on: September 02, 2010, 11:59:36 AM »
Go see someone do it end-to-end before doing it yourself, though.  A lot of what you do is visual, so you need to know what "looks right."

While that's undoubtedly the best way to do it, that's not the way I did it.  I'd never seen anyone do AG before I started.  I just read a lot of books and the usenet group rec.crafts.brewing and jumped in.  Once I was done, it was kind if like "wow, is that all?".  The point being that if you can't brew with someone else to learn, don't let it stop you.

I had no one to watch either, but I did read, and ask Denny and others at the HBD lots of annoying questions.  For me, I wish I had never bothered with extract brewing.

Don't let the math scare you.  Most of the brewing software programs do it all for you, and there really isn't all that much to do anyway.

One other thing.  Be careful with what, and how much equipment you buy.  A lot of newbies think they need everything.  Don't go buying 150 bottles thinking you're going to really dig bottling your own beer.  Try not to fall for gimmicky brewing crap.  Don't buy the smallest boil kettle you can get away with.  You will likely want to do some double-batches, especially if you have friends who are sucking your kegs dry, or if you have a brewing partner.  Take a look at Mike Dixon's homebrew site and see how little you can easily get by with.
 

http://www.ipass.net/mpdixon/

423
General Homebrew Discussion / Pouring a Pint, Brit-style
« on: August 31, 2010, 02:50:21 AM »
A friend of mine just returned to the U.S. from England.  He remarked that when he ordered pints at several pubs, they always seemed to purposely overfill the pint glass to the point of overflowing.  The bartender would then wait for the beer to settle, and then top it off.  A real mess apparently.  Why this filling technique?

424
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Fermentation Room Temp
« on: August 31, 2010, 02:42:37 AM »
I use a Johnson Temp Controller with a single dial.  Should I disconnect it during the winter months, and just run the refrigerator/freezer in normal mode, i.e., use the refrigerator's own internal thermostat?  Just wondering which would be easier on the fridge.  It seems that using the Johnson might still be the way to go as I could more easily dial in the exact temp.

If the ambient temp where you keep the fridge is below your ale fermenting temp, you can rewire the controller to heat instead of cool and connect the lightbulb to that.  It was pretty simple to do on mine, you just take off the cover and switch the wires.

If the ambient temp is warmer, you might as well stick with the controller.

So, you're saying the Johnson will turn on the bulb when the temp drops below say 65F?  Now that's slick!

425
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Fermentation Room Temp
« on: August 30, 2010, 12:48:16 PM »
A 40 watt light is enough to heat my chest freezer in the winter. I could have rewired my temp controller to heat mode but I just let the freezer to cool it down if it gets too hot.

Thanks.  Now we're talking.  As it is in southern Oregon, the winters are too cold for even lager fermentation.  It will get down into the 20s, and occasionally into the teens, usually hovering in the 40s.

So, with an ambient room temp of say 40F, a 40-watt bulb should keep my refrigerator at ale fermentation temp?
I understand that direct light on the carboy is to be avoided, but what about indirect, light that is reflected off the insides of the refrigerator, onto the carboy? 

I use a Johnson Temp Controller with a single dial.  Should I disconnect it during the winter months, and just run the refrigerator/freezer in normal mode, i.e., use the refrigerator's own internal thermostat?  Just wondering which would be easier on the fridge.  It seems that using the Johnson might still be the way to go as I could more easily dial in the exact temp.




426
General Homebrew Discussion / Fermentation Room Temp
« on: August 29, 2010, 03:09:02 PM »
I have an uninsulated shop where I ferment my lagers during the summer months.  I use a side-by-side refrigerator-freezer in the shop for the actual fermentation.  My problem occurs in the winter months when I can't keep the shop warm enough.  Ultimately, I would do all my fermenting in the shop (ales and lagers) if it wasn't for the winter nights in southern Oregon dropping too low.  What would be a cost effective way to maintain a mid 60s room temp during the winter months?

427
Ingredients / Domestic Challenger...English Bittering Hops...
« on: August 29, 2010, 01:31:56 PM »
I'm getting back into the English ale kick, and see that there is a domestic Challenger hop available through Hops Direct.  How close to the English hop is it? 

How critical to an English pale is the bittering hop?  If I used Magnum in place of either Challenger or Target, would it be obvious in the glass, provided I stuck to either EKGs or Fuggles as the flavor/aroma addition?

428
Beer Recipes / Re: Diabetic and Beer
« on: August 29, 2010, 12:58:11 PM »
Have them drink it along side a meal.

429
Beer Recipes / Re: Brew Your Own British Real Ale...Crystal?
« on: August 29, 2010, 12:55:41 PM »
[Thanks for all the info from everyone.  Is the CYBI team able to pull off a Fuller's ESB clone?  I'd be surprised.

Big Brew 2008 had a recipe for Chiswick Bitter that was pretty close to spot on (I seem to remember that John Keeling had a hand in it). http://wiki.americanhomebrewers.org/BigBrew08

Now knowing that Chiswick, London Pride, ESB and Golden Pride are partigyled from the same mash and having a look at www.fullers.co.uk for gravities - you should not struggle to make your own ESB clone.

Ant Hayes
Tonbridge, Kent




Thanks for the info Ant, and all. 

In spite of all the info available online from Fullers, not to mention an interview with the Fullers head brewer, the CYBI team bombed it.  Wrong crystal, wrong hops, no partigyle.  I'm not sure why they bothered, really.

430
Commercial Beer Reviews / Oskar Blues ...
« on: August 28, 2010, 07:40:13 PM »
A local watering hole is serving Oskar Blues Gubna, on tap.  Apparently, it's a double IPA @ 10.5% ABV.  From their site, it appears they have the distinction of being the first craft brewery to can its beers.  Any feedback on this "Gubna" offering, or any of their other brews?

http://www.oskarblues.com/the-brews/gubna

While I'm at it, what's the skinny on Summit hops?  I'm hearing everything from "grapefruit bomb aroma" to "fresh garlic/onion".

431
Ingredients / British Hops...Good Quality?
« on: August 28, 2010, 01:33:58 AM »
Several years back, I purchased some British leaf hops (Fuggles, EKGs) from Hops Direct that were cheesy smelling.  I've avoided buying these particular hops ever since.  I've pretty much stuck to Willamettes as a decent sub.  However, I'm now tempted to try EKGs again.  How are they these days? 

432
Beer Recipes / Re: Brew Your Own British Real Ale...Crystal?
« on: August 27, 2010, 03:04:53 AM »
The Brewing network has a couple of good shows in "Can you brew it?" on Fuller's ESB and London Pride.

Thanks for all the info from everyone.  Is the CYBI team able to pull off a Fuller's ESB clone?  I'd be surprised.
As for British crystal, I've always like Fawcett 65-70L.  I've noticed Jamil uses 120L in his bitter recipe.

433
Beer Recipes / Brew Your Own British Real Ale...Crystal?
« on: August 26, 2010, 02:22:42 AM »
I don't think this book indicates exactly which crystal malts (Lovibond?) to use in the recipes.

Does anyone know for certain what crystal malts are typically used in bitters, pales, and milds, by the Brit breweries?
I'm not so much interested in what homebrewers are personally using, but what the British breweries are actually using.

434
Equipment and Software / Re: Equipment you own but have never used
« on: August 22, 2010, 03:03:53 PM »
One pristine Wort Wizard, courtesy of Denny Conn.  A few years back, my wife emailed Denny on the sly to see what brewing stuff I might like for my birthday.  He suggested a Wort Wizard since he himself uses one, and to be honest, he couldn't really think of anything I might want.  But, my system is even "cheaper and easier" than Denny's.  No Wort Wizard required.  Gravity reigns supreme.  Anybody want to buy a Wort Wizard cheap?  Trade?  C'mon!!!

435
General Homebrew Discussion / Carbonating in Growlers?
« on: August 14, 2010, 04:36:28 PM »
Instead of filling ~50, 12 -oz bottles, could 64oz growlers be used?  Will they seal well enough?  Any adjustments to be made?

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