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Topics - kraftwerk

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Wood/Casks / Oaked cider, anyone?
« on: November 26, 2013, 06:20:49 PM »
Hey all, just wondering if anyone has experience with oak aging cider. I'm on my 4th batch which I plan to fine with gelatin and age on oak. I'm thinking a light French oak spiral would work nicely. Assuming the cider dries out well I think it would resemble a sparkling white wine. Is this a good idea or should I skip it all together?

All Things Food / Ruachbier Beef Stroganoff
« on: April 25, 2013, 05:07:40 AM »
So I always thought Ruachbier tasted like bacon. I had one in the fridge and threw together a simple stroganoff to go with it. I must say, if you pair this beer with meat and gravy, you might warp into a parallel dimension. It's pretty awesome!

First step: open your favorite German Rauchbier

Saute 1/2 white onion with 2 tsp chopped garlic
Brown 1 pkg lean ground beef (or bison, elk, caribou if you have exotic meat on hand)
Add 1 can cream of mushroom soup (if you want to do it up right add sauteed mushrooms and heavy cream!)
1 cup rauchbier
Salt, pepper and paprika to taste

Serve over steaming hot egg noodles. I like a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese too.

Pour another beer after all that hard work and eat up!

Ingredients / Ever tried Yerba Mate?
« on: April 06, 2013, 03:58:11 AM »
So I'm an Argentine-o-phile and have some left over yerba mate (pronounced MAH-teh) from my last trip down there. It's a leafy herb used to make tea and is consumed throughout the day for a shot of energy. Every single Argentine household, rich or poor, has supplies for making mate. Not even exaggerating. If you've never tried it, I highly recommend it.

Anyway, I'm still searching for an earthy flavor/aroma to go with my American amber ale. I'm thinking it could add some nice earthy qualities to my beer without being overly herbal. Any thoughts? How would one go about adding it to a beer?

Yeast and Fermentation / What's your home yeast lab look like?
« on: April 01, 2013, 09:08:11 PM »
Thinking of putting together a basic yeast lab for fun. Mostly to learn the science of culturing and maintaining healthy yeast. I'm assuming it would eventually pay for itself if done properly. So, what's your yeast lab look like? List your favorite pieces of equipment. Bonus points for photos!

Beer Recipes / Experience with hop extract/oil?
« on: April 01, 2013, 09:00:30 PM »
So I brewed a double IPA two weeks ago and I think I lost a whole lot of hop bitterness due to boil over. It was a big batch and I'm thinking much of the hoppiness went into the fires during boil. Anyway, I tasted it today and get very little bitterness. Gravity is still at 1.008 and hoping it will dry out a little more. Just wondering if hop extract is an option at this point, as everything else about the beer is fine. If so, how does one go about "back-bittering" a beer?

Other Fermentables / Coconut wine, anyone?
« on: March 26, 2013, 03:53:00 PM »
Ok, this came to me in a dream last night so if it sounds like nonsense, carry on and pretend you didn't see it. I live in Colorado so fresh ingredients off the tree are out of the question but the local Whole Foods has Coconut water, coconut sugar and dried coconut. I'm thinking the water probably has preservatives in it which might not play nicely with yeast but homemade rice milk could be a possible substitute. Pretty sure that just involves mashing/pureeing rice in water. Then boil with chunks of dried coconut and add coconut sugar? What type of yeast would work well? Normal brewer's yeast, wine yeast? I don't even know where to start with sake yeast.

Anyway, let me know some thoughts. I'm going to head over there today and pick up some ingredients. They even have gallon apple juice jugs which make great test fermenters ;)

Beer Recipes / Looking for piney, earthy character in hops
« on: March 19, 2013, 05:22:03 PM »
Hey friends! So I'm feeling like brewing an American Amber. Let me paint a mental picture for you. You just got off the mountain bike trail somewhere in the Pacific Northwest. Everything is wet and smells like earth and pine. The sun is just peeking out from behind the clouds and warms you up as you sit on the tailgate of your truck and crack open a delicious homebrew.

I want to brew something with a slightly malty, bready backbone and a nice piney, earthy hop character. My new go-to bittering hop is Magnum simply for its versatility and clean bittering quality. Will probably use pale malt, dark crystal and a touch of carapils/dextrine. 

So what are your favorites in the pine department? I'm not opposed to using spruce tips, as it is spring time here in Colorado! Late hop additions and dry hops are a must!

All Grain Brewing / Does increased mashout temp boost efficiency?
« on: March 19, 2013, 03:07:23 AM »
Just brewed a double IPA for the first time and got crap efficiency. I have been doing single infusion mashing with fly sparge at 168 degrees. My mash rested at 150 for 75 min (as recommended by BeerSmith.) As I understand, higher mash temps make for increased efficiency but lowered fermentability. Although 150 is not high, it is higher than my usual 148 mash for light-bodied, dry ales.

So, if I raised the whole mash to 168 before vorlauf and lautering, would I see an increase in efficiency? I know this is a debated issue so maybe I'm beating a dead horse. I won't even get into the batch sparge vs. fly sparge debate...

Yeast and Fermentation / Lager diacetyl what?
« on: February 06, 2013, 04:43:07 AM »
So my first attempt at a lager is going...well it's going. I warmed it up for a diacetyl rest for 3 days before kegging and now it's cold crashed in the garage at around 40 degrees farenheit to get any yeast to settle out. So, my question is: How long do I leave it there? Also, do I then need to prime with sugar for carbonation? I'm assuming I then want to lager for a month or more. Ideas?

Commercial Beer Reviews / Mikkeller Ris a la M'ale (2011)
« on: December 25, 2012, 02:54:11 AM »
My sis got me this one for Xmas last year so I decided to crack it tonight, Xmas eve 2012. Served at cellar temp in large pinot glass.

Has a slightly hazy, cherry red color with a billowing, white head that lasts all the way to the end. Slightly sweet cherry and malt aroma with little to no hop aroma. Light saison yeast aroma, as well. Flavor is unexpectedly light. Not a fresh, juicy cherry flavor as I expected. The almonds play a very muted, supporting role. Nonetheless, the cherry flavor is apparent but more like a dried, subdued cherry. Very refreshing with a medium, slightly lower than expected carbonation on the tongue.

Overall, a very nice beer. I can't say it was love at first sip but it grew on me a lot by the time I got to the end. I was left with a nicely laced glass and the desire to try it again. Could use more carbonation, in my opinion.

I would really like to brew something like this for New Year's 2014 but kick up the bubbles a LOT more. Anyone have suggestions on how to make a nice, light bodied cherry saison?

The Pub / How to introduce a girl to brewing...
« on: August 04, 2012, 02:34:58 AM »
Ok, so I'm trying to woo a lovely lady. Good news- she likes beer! And she's also interested in brewing.  She's not really a fan of the hops. Also, she says she's kind of burnt out on wheats. She's a fan of brown ales (Ellie's is her fav) but I want to get her to branch out and try something interesting, without going too crazy. Definitely don't want to scare her off with something wierd and sour or too oaky and spicy.

I'm thinking something low alcohol (4-5%) easy to drink, refreshing after a workout, etc.  Suggestions?

Commercial Beer Reviews / Dupont Bière de Miel
« on: July 19, 2012, 04:43:47 AM »
Just gonna say that I've enjoyed a few of these this summer. Really powerful honey aroma with a lightly spicy yeast character, grainy, bready flavor and nice medium body. Corn-like aroma becomes apparent when it warms and laces the glass all the way down to the last sip.

Try it!

Kegging and Bottling / Help! Kegging an English mild...
« on: July 17, 2012, 07:33:23 PM »
Hey all, I'm kegging an English mild (3.5% abv) and it needs to be ready for a wedding on the 28th of July.

What volume of C02 should I shoot for? Part of me thinks a proper English ale should be on the low side but this needs to be a crowd pleaser on a hot day, with lots of people who aren't accustomed to drinking this style.

Should I go for the standard 3/4c priming sugar or make it even more fizzy and refreshing? Or about 1/2c to be closer to style?

Beer Recipes / Dark Fig Saison
« on: July 14, 2012, 07:43:44 PM »
Here's one for the holidays:

Dark Fig Saison

9.00 lb Pale malt
2.00 lb Crystal 120
1.00 lb Special B
0.50 lb Wheat malt
0.50 lb Carawheat
0.50 lb Flaked oats
0.50 lb Caramunich
18.00 oz Mexican piloncillo sugar

1.25 oz US Brewer's Gold
1.25 oz Hallertauer

Fig compote: simmer 2 lb dried black mission figs with zest from 2 valencia oranges, 1 small cinnamon stick, splash of dark rum, 6 oz piloncillo

Double decoction, add fig compote and remaining 12.00 oz piloncillo during late boil

I plan to rack this on Brett Brux and bourbon oak before bottling in champagne bottles. This'll be a cellar beer which I hope to have ready for the holidays!

Beer Recipes / Golden Lemongrass Farmhouse
« on: July 14, 2012, 07:19:18 PM »
Golden Lemongrass Farmhouse:

7.25 lb Pale malt
4.00 lb Wheat malt
1.00 lb Munich I
0.75 lb Caravienne
0.50 lb Light candi sugar

1.00 oz Tettnanger
1.00 oz Hallertauer
1.00 oz Saaz

Whitelabs 670 American Farmhouse Blend
Rack on 2 lbs fresh lemongrass.

Target OG: 1.058

This actually kinda resembles a Tripel. Pretty damn tasty! Please try brewing it and tell us about your results!

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