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Messages - micsager

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All Grain Brewing / Re: How do I start all grain brewing
« on: June 09, 2016, 09:29:34 AM »
About 6 years ago, when I was only brewing with extract and specialty grains, I accidentally ordered a minimash kit.  When I opened the box, I thought "oh sh*t.  But, I followed the directions, and realized how easy that was, and from there is was just logical to go all grain. 

Going Pro / Re: Starting wage for Cellar position?
« on: June 09, 2016, 09:23:41 AM »
I call bs. Labor is between 1 and 3% according to studies I've seen. Closer to 1 at retail and closer to 3 at wholesale. Sure it will suck at first, but they will adjust. When the minimum wage does go up (I say when because it is inevitable), it will not go up in one go.

I'd love to see those studies.  In my company (not a brewery) labor is 55% of our total costs. 

Hop Growing / Re: 2016 hop growning season
« on: April 25, 2016, 03:17:59 PM »
I recently moved into a new home and the backyard is a mess. Just completely covered in weeds. So seeing as the weather is already nice, I decided to plant my rhizomes in half barrels until I can tame the yard. I opted for Cascade and Columbus, as those seem to survive the heat, according to feedback from home brewers in the area.

I decided to go with a soil mix as opposed to straight potting soil. I did 60% native sandy soil, 30% bagged garden soil and 10% Fertilizer. This way I can easily transplant it next season, and it will be accustomed to the native soil.

This is my first time growing hops, so I'm pretty excited.

It's fun to grow your hops.  I think you should stick to the barrels.  the barrels contain them well, although you do have to trim the crown every other year or so.  Your soil mix will be fine.  Not sure where Rialto is, but just have fun with them.  We just consider them ornamental.  And in Northwest Washington state, ours are bout 5 feet tall.  Now it's time to thin them a bit, and get rid of the lower leaves.

Going Pro / Re: Brewery Volunteering
« on: March 30, 2016, 09:11:48 AM »

What is the liability, recipes, or?
Safety. Volunteers may not be covered under insurance plans.

I amazed anytime I see friends post on Facebook or the like about the 8 hours they "volunteered" bottling at a brewery. They are a damn business and you just increased their bottom line without any compensation other than a case of beer on the way out the door. Is it only me that thinks these people are suckers?

May be not so. I am sure everybody would love to pay you buy some small businesses just can not afford it. This is most likely when you start up and do not have enough sales.

Exactly Leos, think of Alaska Brewing.  They would not be where they are today without the many volunteers when they started.  And from what I hear, those original volunteers are STILL getting free beer. 

Hop Growing / Re: 2016 hop growning season
« on: March 17, 2016, 01:34:57 PM »
I hate this time of year.  I've got all four hop hills (half whiskey barrels) with lots of little 6-8 inch sprouts.  Tonight, they all get cut down.  It'll be a few weeks before they re-emerge.  Maybe I'll pickle them like HopsDirect does. 

Hop Growing / Re: 2016 hop growning season
« on: March 04, 2016, 11:59:22 AM »
Mine are starting to sprout. I plan on repotting all my hops this year, figure after two years in pots they could stand to have the crowns broken up and start fresh.

Yep, I do that every other year.  A PITA sometimes, but the half barrels keep them contained. 

All Things Food / bacon brine recipe
« on: February 25, 2016, 09:43:29 AM »
Hi folks-

I've got a Bradley smoker.  And have smoked a few batches of bacon.  Wet brine, dry brine, and a few different recipes of each.  Just got them off the Web.  But nothing really has me impressed.  I did recently get the cold smoker attachment, and trying to find a good cold smoked bacon recipe. 

Anyone willing to offer such? 

Hop Growing / Re: 2016 hop growning season
« on: February 25, 2016, 09:39:45 AM »
.... and the fuggles are up.  Good deal, all four.  I was worried maybe we cut that crown up a bit to much last fall. 

Hop Growing / Re: 2016 hop growning season
« on: February 19, 2016, 09:52:42 AM »
Still too cold in Indiana for anything to sprout for me. I am looking forward to building a trelis for them to climb on vs. the chain link fence I tried training them on. I got a whole dried ounce of Cacade and nothing from my Centennial last year.

Several years ago at a different place, I grew them on chain link fence.  It worked great, except fall clean-up was a PITA.

Hop Growing / Re: 2016 hop growning season
« on: February 19, 2016, 09:50:17 AM »
How much of your hop usage for the 1bbl brewhouse(I think) are home grown?

Zero.  We have them in half barrels in front of the brewery for landscaping only.  Every other year we have to dump the barrels, cut the crown up, and replant a few rhizomes.  I give the rest to local homebrewers and such. 

Although we are considering a fresh hop beer in the fall for (big surprise) the Fresh Hop festival in Yakima.

Hop Growing / Re: 2016 hop growning season
« on: February 17, 2016, 10:12:27 AM »
And now Chinook is sprouting. 

Nothing on the Fuggles or Centennial. 

Hop Growing / 2016 hop growning season
« on: February 11, 2016, 01:22:47 PM »
Well, my cascades are starting to sprout.  And it's just mid-February.  Pretty shocked. 

All Things Food / Re: Smokers: electric vs gas
« on: February 09, 2016, 10:11:55 AM »
I will say that I'm very happy with my Bradley Original Smoker.  Sure you have to use their pucks but I usually shot off the smoke generator after 3-4 hours of smoking and let the rest of it go till it's done.

Haven't made anything bad with it yet. 

When I have the time, I use my WSM but the Bradley comes in handy more times than I can tell.

I have a Bradley as well.  Luckily it was a garage sale find for $50, because those pucks don't come cheep.  Still trying to nail down a good bacon brine, but each batch gets a little better.  SWMBO got me the cold smoke attachment for Christmas. Have not tried it yet. 

Beer Recipes / Re: Drew's Bratty Brat Beer
« on: February 01, 2016, 10:07:12 AM »
Well folks, we served this beer over the weekend at the StrangeBrew Fest.  Friday night we drained one 1/2bbl, and by 4pm on Saturday, the next one was gone.  Just before kegging, we tasted, and it was a bit light on the spices, so we made a tincture, and doubled the spice bill. 

It was a very strange beer.  But, the folks seemed to like it. 

Thanks for the idea Drew! 

Beer Recipes / Re: Drew's Bratty Brat Beer
« on: January 11, 2016, 11:13:32 AM »
Well guys, I brewed this beer over the weekend.  Here's for hoping for the best. 


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