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Messages - anje

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31
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fun fermentions!
« on: January 29, 2013, 03:18:13 PM »
That's gorgeous. Makes me want to give up the whole airlock thing and just ferment in a loosely covered bucket so I can see what's going on! (Sadly, still haven't used the carboy. I like my buckets for how easy they are to work with and because I don't relish the idea of lifting/carrying 50lbs of slippery glass.  But I would love to see more of the fermentation.)

32
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Key to creamy stouts
« on: January 29, 2013, 10:40:43 AM »
Be aware that some folks may shy away from lactose...  I'm on the extreme end of the intolerance, where 3 M&Ms will cause me all sorts of fun gastric distress while clearing the room. So I stay clear of the milk stouts.

Ah, so that's what your avatar is about.  It shows what happens when you eat M&Ms :)
Only if someone has an Aim-n-Flame. :)

33
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Brew ruined??? Vodka drip in wort....
« on: January 29, 2013, 10:15:52 AM »
The downside of using a foaming substance like Starsan in the airlock instead of vodka:

34
All Grain Brewing / Re: First all-grain, help me make a SMaSH APA recipe?
« on: January 28, 2013, 10:41:48 AM »
One of the sillier things that I didn't anticipate is how much freaking fog you get with hot water in cool weather. Had to take off my glasses and was constantly wiping the display on my thermometer (which is waterproof, for the record) to try to see anything.

But I finally got to use all my new toys. New kettle (aluminum, yes I heated water in it previously), bayou burner that sounds like a jet engine, milled my own grain, and it's in my new fermentation chamber at 63F. Because the best part of Christmas is when you get to play with your toys!

ETA: For the moment, I'm using BrewTarget for my software. Which isn't fantastic, but it seems to be functional. Even if the temps it gave me for strike water were off (blame not knowing any values for the cooler, need to mess with those), it at least gave me something to shoot for. I do need to more carefully measure my water -- this was largely scoop, pour, oops-too-cold, throw some back and heat more, dump some more in, good-quick-add-grain!

35
Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Key to creamy stouts
« on: January 28, 2013, 08:20:29 AM »
Be aware that some folks may shy away from lactose...  I'm on the extreme end of the intolerance, where 3 M&Ms will cause me all sorts of fun gastric distress while clearing the room. So I stay clear of the milk stouts.

Slightly lower carbonation tends to be recommended for stouts, too. Fizzy and creamy don't really work together.

36
All Grain Brewing / Re: First all-grain, help me make a SMaSH APA recipe?
« on: January 28, 2013, 08:07:23 AM »
Well, I did it. Not exactly a SMaSH -- decided to throw some crystal in there for color/flavor/acid. I'll probably start monkeying with water chemistry in a few brews.

What have I learned?
(1) Hitting temperatures when it's 33F where you're working is kinda tricky. (Glad I didn't do it last weekend when it was more like 12F.  But chilling worked great!)
(2) I used too much water. My efficiency might actually have been OK if I measured it, but everything came out a bit dilute.
(3) My cooler keeps grains untouchably hot after the sparge is drained for several hours. But it takes a LOT to get it warmed up.

Can anyone link me to a quick tutorial on how to tune the temperatures needed to heat a mash tun? Even with preheating, my strike water temp wasn't even close at first. The thing weighs about 17lbs, for what it's worth.

37
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Salmanazar
« on: January 25, 2013, 10:00:17 AM »
Maybe it'll take a standard sized stopper, like an 8 or 10?

38
And yet, somehow this makes me say "I really want to drink this beer". I guess "cat pee" is a relative term lol.
+1  I seem to really like the hops that others describe as cat pee-like.

39
Kegging and Bottling / Re: Another Question
« on: January 24, 2013, 02:05:12 PM »
Got a pH tester?

I'm still learning this stuff, but it does sound rather like beergas or something similar.  pH should tell you if you've got sufficient carbonic in there, though you'll have to dig or test commercial examples to get a comparison. Water profile being weird for the style seems plausible, but I expect you'd notice it every time you brew the style.

40
Equipment and Software / Re: Warming Fermenters a Few Degrees
« on: January 23, 2013, 02:56:07 PM »
Standard $ 25-35 aquarium heaters have temperature ranges that do not go much below 70 F.  The one I have theoretically goes down to 65 F but in fact goes down only as far as 67 F.  Maybe you could use a water bath for your ales and put your lager into your fermenter? 
I'm going to guess that if you get a smaller heater for the waterbath you use, it won't be capable of heating the whole volume to a full 70F.  Not sure if you'd risk burning it out doing that, though.

Edited to add: Aquarium heaters also usually are meant to be raising the tank temp above normal room temperature. If you've got this out in a 2C garage, you're sure to not be able to get the water bath as warm with a heater as you would in a 21C house.

41
I'm considering leaving the drain plug open on my new chest freezer/fermentation chamber for just that reason.

OH SURE! turn a keezer of death into a brewery of death  ;D probably not.
;D It'll be on the second floor (once I get my act together and drag thing thing out of the garage already). So it'll have to turn into a whole House of Death.

42
I'm considering leaving the drain plug open on my new chest freezer/fermentation chamber for just that reason. 

43
The Pub / Re: Pint Glass Pricing Poll
« on: January 22, 2013, 11:32:11 AM »
I'd say about $7-8 is the point at which I'd probably have to think about it, might get it later or not at all.

Mind you, I thought the beers were rather mediocre at a brewpub in my parents' town, was curious about a glass, and I believe they were charging well over $10 for non-shaker glasses. Under $8 for a glass from a place that sells really good beer, I would much more readily pay.  How much I like the beverage definitely would influence my decision to buy a glass!

44
Equipment and Software / Re: What 10 gal fermenter?
« on: January 22, 2013, 11:21:32 AM »
I imagine they'd be difficult to handle, but what about demijohns? I see them in up to about a 15 gallon size.

15 Gal from Midwest
14 gal, currently out of stock
Overkill, 20 gal foodgrade plastic bucket

45
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Lagering question
« on: January 22, 2013, 11:08:23 AM »
How's the temperature in the garage?

(I'd be chicken about lagering in mine, but on the other hand, I keep sodas cold out there all winter without them freezing.)

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