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Messages - erockrph

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Kegging and Bottling / Re: Beer won't Come out of Keg :-(
« on: May 12, 2016, 05:57:00 AM »
You likely switched the beer and gas posts.  They look the same, but aren't.
Yup, that's my guess as well or you flipped the dip tubes.

Degas, check posts and tubes,

I read this last sentence about ten times and kept thinking, there's an AHA member named Degas?

Anyway, I bet this is my problem. The posts are on the right place and it's not a hoppy beer, but I suddenly thought, I bet I switched the tubes. Though I wouldn't rule out gunk. In any event, another useful Forum thread. I will "Degas" the keg and make sure the tubes are in the right place and blow out the tubes and make sure there's no ice and so on.

Clearly I need to name this Edgar's Cream Ale...
I think he was into harder stuff than beer

I've been battling a nasty combo of allergies and a cold lately, so I haven't been doing much imbibing lately. I finally did get to sit down with some of Pete's Mixed Berry Melomel:

The color is amber/ruby with decent clarity and good legs. On the nose I get an even mix of berry notes (raspberry preserves jumps out in particular) and honey aromatics. There is a familiar sweet woody-spice note (I tend to pick it up as cinnamon, but it's not quite that). I pick up on that same aromatic quite often from the wildflower honey from my local apiaries. There is a bit of alcohol when you swirl up the glass and take a deep inhale, but that dissipates rather quickly.

At this point I'll interject and mention that the only still meads I've had are semi-sweet or sweet, mostly melomels from Moonlight Meadery or my own meads in a similar vein. The aroma of Pete's melomel is very similar to Desire from Moonlight, as a matter of fact. Needless to say, I was totally caught off guard when I took a sip and found that this was quite a bit drier than I was prepared for. I literally said WTF out loud in an empty room.

After the initial perception mismatch, I went back in with a more prepared palate. The mead is not bone-dry, but it is much closer to a red wine than a dessert wine. The berry character is there, along with some tannic berry-seed character. There is not a huge honey flavor (although it present). That woody note is still there and pairs well with the red wine vibe. The finish has some blueberry skin and more fleeting honey notes.

This is a really nice mead. I still have a bit left and I look forward to enjoying it with a meal. It certainly would be a nice substitute to a jammy red wine like a Red Zinfandel. Another great one, Pete!

Beer Recipes / Re: Rancho Dark Strong Ale
« on: May 12, 2016, 02:36:49 AM »
No dark candi syrup?

I like the blended base malts as well. I've used Castle Pils and Crisp MO in combo on quite a few occasions, and it does bring a nice depth to a style like this.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fast Pitch
« on: May 12, 2016, 01:55:45 AM »
If you want to go the lazy route for starters then just add your DME right to a sanitized gallon jug, add a quart of water, cap it and shake till it's all foam, then pitch your yeast and cover with foil. No expensive can of concentrated starter needed. I've made dozens of starters like this and never had a batch go bad as a result.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

No boil, huh?  What about getting the DME well mixed in?  Do you stay under a certain starter size for this?
If I'm not sweating it when it comes to boiling, a little bit of undissolved DME (and there's usually a very small dusting left by the time I'm done shaking) isn't really too bothersome to me. Think of it as trub ;)

I only brew 3 gallon batches, and I'm a firm believer in the "Shaken, not stirred starter" method. Even for lagers, I'm only doing about 1.5 liter starters, tops.

As far as bacterial growth goes, even if there's a few cells on DME, that stuff is massively hygroscopic. If they survive, they're not exactly going to be primed to take off fast. I don't use this method for things like old or unhealthy yeast packs, or waking up bottle dregs. But for a healthy pack of yeast, I'm not worried. I think of it as a no-boil mead, or the many times I've forgotten to add sugar until after I chilled (why is my OG so low... d'oh!). If the yeast are in way better shape and quantity than the possible contaminants (if any), then they're going to take over quickly.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Drying out my IPA grain bill question.
« on: May 12, 2016, 01:30:22 AM »
Some super dry IPAs are finishing in the mid 1.00X's range, and those would probably need some sugar (doesn't need to be dextrose, regular table sugar is fine) even in the 1.060's. So I guess it depends on how dry you want it. Personally, if I were dialing in a grain bill I'd tweak one variable at a time. I'd use the grain bill you proposed without sugar and see how it goes. If you want it drier, then you can always add sugar on a rebrew.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fast Pitch
« on: May 11, 2016, 02:34:44 PM »
If you want to go the lazy route for starters then just add your DME right to a sanitized gallon jug, add a quart of water, cap it and shake till it's all foam, then pitch your yeast and cover with foil. No expensive can of concentrated starter needed. I've made dozens of starters like this and never had a batch go bad as a result.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

Nice job!  As usual, interesting results.  Can someone please point me to a good explanation of all this p value stuff? Basically half of the people could ID and yet it is not significant?! 

I am pretty sensitive to lactic acid and actually believe acid malt is superior to lactic acid.  I've done the research and they are not the same.  Of course, I have plenty of skeptics but that's OK.  I would love to see a side by side: acid malt vs lactic acid someday...
I'm a long way removed from stats class, but in layman's terms the p value for these experiments is the odds that the results could be merely due to random guess. The lower it is, the more likely to be a significant result. They use a p value of .05, which basically amounts to a 5% chance it could be random guess or 95% confidence that the results are significant.

Remember, this is a triangle test so you'd expect 33% to be right, on average. Above that, and it is more likely to not be due to random chance. The actual calculations are where the statistics comes in, to determine how many positive results you would need from a given sample to hit a particular p value.

Beer Recipes / Re: Help designing a recipe for Mango Habanero IPA ?
« on: May 09, 2016, 01:28:46 PM »
ive steeped basemalts in 155degrees for 30 minutes without issues before.  I used carared before and didnt like the color it gave out, thats why i figured id try red x.
To get the red color out of Red X it needs to be that vast majority of your grain bill and at the 1.050 gravity range. It gives a striking red color at that usage rate. At different amounts, or in combination with other malts, it will really only push you towards an orange hue. Flavor-wise I find it pretty close to a light Munich malt.

If you're looking for a steeping grain to get a red color, a light touch of Roast Barley is probably the best option.

The Pub / Re: Guitar talk moved over from main forum....
« on: May 09, 2016, 04:30:30 AM »
I miss guitar.

I have 6, and haven't touched even one in over a year now. Thankfully I'm on break from school, so that should change soon. I really only ever play 3 of the 6:

Chapman ML-2
If you know Rob Chapman from youtube, it's one of his guitars. From the second batch of ML-2s, black flame veneer on mahogany. Really high quality guitar shipped with budget hardware to keep the prices down. Swap out the cheap hardware, and it sounds as good as it plays.

Epiphone Zakk Wylde Les Paul.
One of the active EMG ones, bought as a scratch and dent item for a steal. Plays awesome. I've got giant hands, so thick necked guitars are really comfy for me. I want to swap the EMGs out for either the EMG Het Set or some low output Seymour Duncans. (Yes, two very different paths) Much better guitar than the graphics and price tag would have you believe.

Carvin Bolt
My first "good" guitar, way back when. Needs some better pickups, but will do a great "Number of the Beast" rendition in the meantime. Sad thing is as much as I love Iron Maiden, I'd rather the guitar did SRV. Plan is to turn it into a bluesier guitar.

Guitar amps are really what got me into electronics. I don't have the time to develop my playing enough to be what I'd consider good, but amps and pedals fascinate me. As a result, that's really where I've splurged. Mesa Mk. V Halfstack. Way more amp than I'll ever need. I've had several amps, and this is the only one so far that has been able to keep up with my tastes alternating between blues and metal.

Still GAS for a Marshall JVM 410, but I'd have to sell the Mk. V, and I'm sure I'd miss it...
My main guitar right now is an Epiphone LP Prophecy with EMG 81/85s. $600 for a neck-through LP with EMGs was a deal that can't be beat.

It goes straight into my Orange Tiny Terror. Nothing like a 15 watt tube amp where you can play it wide open without destroying your ears. And I am in complete agreement about the EL84s - great power tube.

I also own a couple Carvins, a neck-through 7-string and a 5-string fretless bass. I love them both, but I really need to find a tech who knows how to set up a fretless bass properly. No one has gotten the action as low as I'd like it. With the right setup a couple mm is all the clearance you need.

Edit - damn phone

Beer Recipes / Re: Help designing a recipe for Mango Habanero IPA ?
« on: May 09, 2016, 04:12:31 AM »
I don't have much to add regarding the mango and habs, but I wouldn't use Red X malt as a steeping grain. It is a base malt and needs to be mashed. I'd use CaraRed instead. CaraRed is a nice specialty malt in an IPA in my experience.

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: plastic fermenters
« on: May 08, 2016, 02:27:47 PM »
Plastic poses no infection risk above and beyond fermenting in glass or stainless. There is some concern that scratches in the surface may provide a "hiding place" for contaminating microorganisms. The reality is that any organic residue that remains after fermentation must be removed by a thorough cleaning, or else you cannot sanitize the fermenter properly. Plastic may provide a better foothold for crud, but a soak in warm PBW solution is generally more than enough to remove all of this. As long as your cleaning and sanitizing practices are up to snuff, then there is no cause for concern with fermenting in plastic.

I'm going to try something fun on my next brew day, a summer pils. Using a german pils as a base, but about 25 ibus of sorachi ace at 60, then 15 grams sorachi and 30 grams crystal at 170F for 15. Looking for something lager, something off the reservation, something thirst quenching and bright but full of flavor. Might even dry hop it.
Sounds good and summery. Lemony, too. Gonna do a pils soon,too.
Yep, it's fast approaching lager drinking season. I have a Vienna on deck with some local malt that Pete hooked me up with in the swap.

Jim, I'm interested to hear how the Sorachi works out for you in the Pils. I don't use it much, but now that I'm growing some I'll be using it a bit more often (hopefully).

Kegging and Bottling / Re: The Taprite Beer Carbonation Tester
« on: May 07, 2016, 12:23:16 PM »
I look around at some stuff homebrewers are buying now days and it shocks me what folks will spend.

Homebrewing is still one of the cheapest primarily white-collar hobbies in the United States. Have you priced American-made guitars lately?  The average Paul Reed Smith (PRS) guitar sells for $3K, and I know guys who own a dozen or more of these instruments plus a few Gibson Historics that sell for $5K+.
I know there are mixed reviews floating around out there, but I have nothing but great things to say about my Carvins. Custom made to spec at 1/4 the price of a PRS or Gibson/Fender Custom shop.

I'm not going to lie, though. My Epiphone LP does everything I'd want from an US-made Gibson and then some at a fraction of the price.

Ingredients / Re: briess 2 row on sale at amazon
« on: May 07, 2016, 12:52:54 AM »
50 lbs showed up today and it's Great Western 2-row :D
I'm good with that! I never see GW products in my market.
This was the 10 pounds for $6.71 deal? I've never run across GW out my way either, so I'd certainly take a shot at this to give their malt a try.

Beer Recipes / Re: Honey dew melon Kölsch
« on: May 06, 2016, 05:59:23 PM »
I would like to do this with a nice freshly picked heirloom melon in the summer.
Pete, which melons have you had good results with up your way? The only melons I've had even modest luck with were Sugar Baby watermelons (the small, bowling-ball sized ones) and Queen Anne melons (small canteloupes the size of a grapefruit). Any larger melons don't have enough time to ripen before the cool weather hits. Even the small ones don't seem to have much flavor unless there's a string of a few 90+ degree days as the fruits are setting.

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