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Messages - erockrph

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Commercial Beer Reviews / Far From The Tree - Nova (Hopped Cider)
« on: October 14, 2017, 11:46:04 AM »
I just tried this on tap while I was visiting Salem (MA) for the day. I was super thirsty after walking around all day, so I went for a local cider rather than beer with dinner. It turned out to be the right choice, no doubt.

I've had dry-hopped ciders before (including my own), but this is the first one that got it just right for me. The cider itself is lightly carbonated, and balanced more towards the tart rather than sweet. I definitely got some tropical hop character, and a touch of pine. The hop flavors were a nice accent, but not overpowering. The most notable thing is that there was absolutely zero harsh bitterness or vegetal character.

This was so good that I stopped by a local wine shop on the way back to the parking garage to pick some up for the road. I don't know how widely they distribute, but Far From the Tree is definitely worth a try if you ever come across it.

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The Pub / Re: A Nice Surprise
« on: October 14, 2017, 11:30:36 AM »
Looks like a great haul.

How is the Spencer?
It is a really solid beer. It's more West Coast than Northeast. We had just seen it at The Big E, but we were on the way out and the link was long and slow. My wife knew I wanted to try it, thus the sole non-German beer in the selection.

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The Pub / Re: A Nice Surprise
« on: October 06, 2017, 11:27:27 AM »
The cutest thing was she told me that we need to save the goats :) She apparently hasn't seen my collection lol!

The Pub / A Nice Surprise
« on: October 06, 2017, 10:08:20 AM »
My wife, who knows next to nothing about beer, decided to surprise me yesterday. Apparently, she did about an hour of research while waiting at an appointment, and ended coming home with this. I think she's a keeper :)

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Heat Shocking Yeast to Increase Glycerol
« on: October 06, 2017, 08:41:48 AM »
body mostly

There are so many other ways to create body for beer brewers, that this is not really a method.

I've also read in some winemaking articles recently that glycerol may not add to body as much as once thought.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Where to learn more about yeast
« on: October 06, 2017, 08:34:25 AM »
Most yeast strains available to homebrewers originally come from commercial breweries. If you can get your hands on beer from breweries that use a particular strain, then you can get at least an initial impression of some of the flavor profile.

Ingredients / Re: Hops Glut?
« on: September 27, 2017, 05:27:19 PM »
was wondering about this being inevitable not only due to flattening in the industry growth but with so many varieties that continue to pop up.
Same here. Also, the amount of time that it takes to bring a new variety to market is rather long. I fear that as the market hits saturation, many smaller hop breeders are going to feel the pinch when there just isn't enough demand to support the continued influx of new varieties that they have in the pipeline.

There is at least one producer of hop oil out there. I've used their product to make my own beard oil, but I didn't find the aroma to be very "hoppy" once mixed in with the carrier oils. Once I spiked it with some citronellol and beta-pinene it got closer, but still rather muddled. If you looked at some hop oil charts and started playing around with a half dozen or more of the constituent oils, you might be able to get in the ballpark of a hop aroma. This is something I've always wanted to do, but I haven't gotten around to it yet.

The compounds I'd start with:


Then build up one that is pine-forward with an orange note. A citrus/floral combo. A tropical-citrus. And so on. You'd probably want some grassy-cannibus notes in the background of all of them.

Good luck! Keep us posted here if you get some good results.

The Pub / Re: Product Development, Homebrewing, and Keurig
« on: September 25, 2017, 07:44:42 AM »
I have a Zymatic and it is a lot of fun but, after dozens of batches I can attest I really feel I make better beer on my old 12 gallon homebrew system. I can't understand the sense in "pico paks" unless you are just very rich and don't know what to do with your money.

Keurig is just pure idiocy IMO. My mom bought me one years ago and after I used the initial pods I strictly used it for hot water until it died. OTOH I actually like to drink GOOD coffee so there's that.

We had Keurigs at a former job and after a while it struck me how wasteful they are.  We live in such a "disposable" society and most people don't even notice it... You can recycle the cups but you have to do a lot of work to remove the filter and grounds before you can.  Plus, making real coffee is not hard...

To me, and this is just my personal opinion, the automatic systems like the Zymatic and Pico to me feel more like a coffee maker and less like brewing.  I enjoy being more involved in the process, but to each their own.  I am intrigued by the thought of making it easier for me in my tiny kitchen, but I think the furthest I would automate would be a grainfather to help with mashing. As it stands now, I don't do all grain and I don't mash.
I understand the sentiment, but in the end it's all about what you enjoy with the hobby. For me, it's tinkering with new ideas and recipe design. If I was sure I was going to get similar quality results compared to my current setup, then the Zymatic would be perfect for me (the Pico, not so much). I enjoy the brewing process, but I don't have the time to brew as often as I'd like. Something like the Zymatic would let me control recipe design, but free me up during the actual brewing process.

I'm the same way with Keurig. Sure, I prefer good coffee, but a Keurig is quick and keeps me out of the drive-thru in the morning. I only drink one cup a day, so the portion is just right, too. Thankfully, I've discovered that cold brew is just as quick and lets me drink better coffee. I'm seriously considering turning one of my kegerator taps to a nitro coffee tap.

Beer Recipes / Re: Freezer Cleaning Recipe-style classification
« on: September 25, 2017, 07:17:42 AM »
What you have there is the ubiquitous "American Ale". I don't think it will end up cleanly fitting in a style, but it will be a tasty pint.

Ingredients / Re: Candi syrup in primary
« on: September 24, 2017, 08:56:31 AM »
I'd say the earlier you add it during fermentation the better. The more active the yeast is, the less of an issue O2 uptake would be. I'd pull off a liter of beer, stir the syrup in that until it is fully dissolved, then gently stir it back into fermentation.

Ingredients / Re: Hop Extract & 30 Minute Boils
« on: September 24, 2017, 06:27:17 AM »
Tried Eric’s trick today. Mixed the hop shot with DME. Maybe 1/8 cup DME to 5ml of hop shot. Final product looked like saw dust. Still sat on top of the break for a bit, but did manage to get into the wort and didn’t leave everything tacky. I’ll weigh it out tomorrow and figure out the ideal ratio.

Best tip in years.

Awesome! I'm glad it worked out for you.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Yeast Advice
« on: September 24, 2017, 05:45:13 AM »
A lot of English strains are quick to finish and flocculate out which is why you see the recirculation of fermenting beer thru fish tails in Yorkshire Squares. On the Homebrew level you could stir the partially fermented beer or as suggested add an additional strain that isn't so quick to flocculate.

Then again, some English strains simply don't process some sugars. For example London ESB does not utilize the sugar maltotrios. In that case stirring probably won't do much. Adding an additional strain that processes all the sugars could help.

If you watch the video on the Samuel Smith's website you'll see the partially fermented beer being circulated thru fishtails after the 2nd day in the square to rouse and aerate the yeast.

Winsor is a strain that doesn't ferment maltotriose, thus the higher FG. A neutral, attenuative strain helps finish up the fermentation without changing the ester profile too much.

I've actually started doing this in my IPA's recently. I've only done this once or twice, but I suspect that Winsor does the biotransformation thing. It also helps the US-05 floc out a bit better.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Yeast Advice
« on: September 23, 2017, 11:51:53 AM »
Thanks for the reply. Not to bothered with the discrepancy with gravity readings to be honest and understand the efficiency.

With regards to the yeast the other option than using WLP013 would be Danstar Windsor yeast now would 2 packs of dry pitched yeast be ok?

Yeah, 2 dry packets for a 1.085 beer should be fine.

Agreed, but expect much lower attenuation out of Winsor. You could pitch a pack of Winsor and a pack of Nottingham or US-05 to get the best of both worlds if you wanted to.

Ingredients / Re: Pilsner Mail for an IPA?
« on: September 23, 2017, 07:35:07 AM »
Hey everyone,

new member here, but not really new to homebrewing.  I've been brewing for about 4 years now, now on all grain but have just recently moved onto building my own recipes.

A friend of mine who owns a bakery recently went to his grain supplier (who also supplies grains to some breweries in the PNW) and got about 10 lbs of Pilsner malt, and 10 lbs of white wheat malt.

I'm not a huge Hef fan, but figured I could at least use the Pilsner malt for something.  Can I use pilsner malt for an IPA?  I'm assuming I may need to add some other grains to build the body a bit, but wanted to see if anyone had some feedback on that.

Or if you have a suggestion on what to use both of those grains on, other than a Hef I'm totally open to suggestions.  Thanks!

I've done SMaSH IPAs with Pils malt several times. I tend to go back and forth between American 2 Row and Pils for pretty much any IPA anyway. Current trend is for little, if any, malt character anyway. I have a beer that I did with a commercial brewery that was 80/20 Pils/rice for the grist. Really light, dry, and easy drinking.

I have used a little rice in some IPAs, and I like the results. Maybe 10% for me.
Interesting. I've been using corn quite a bit lately, but I wasn't a huge fan of it in the IPA's I've tried it in. I may have to experiment with rice sometime soon.

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