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Messages - reverseapachemaster

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Being Water Wise
« on: January 25, 2014, 09:28:59 AM »
I capture all of my chilling water and use it to water the garden, indoor plants, or grass. If you're brewing outdoors it's not that hard to run the output of the chiller into your grass. It's far more useful than sending it back into the sewage system for further treatment.

I make spent grain bread and use most of the grain out of my small batches for that purpose. That keeps all the water trapped in the grain as part of my consumption. When I don't make bread I sparge the grain once or twice more and boil that stuff down to make starter work on future beers. It's a BIAB system so I can really squeeze out the majority of the water.

Any left over sparge water gets cooled and bottled in the fridge. Then I drink it.

You could also look at reducing your boil off.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Stoopid Polar Vortex!
« on: January 25, 2014, 09:09:59 AM »
It was 30 yesterday but 70 tomorrow. It will probably 30 again on Tuesday. Texas weather is crazy.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: 7 months in on a Flanders Red with Roeselare
« on: January 24, 2014, 08:32:33 AM »
Personally I would bottle some of each straight, bottle a blend and then age some on cherries. You won't get a lot of beer of each version but you'll get lots of versions to enjoy.

I would be careful about adding fermentable sugar to the barrel. It's going to ferment and unless your barrel is partially empty--which it shouldn't be--you're going to get beer coming out of the bung hole. Might be better to rack the blend for the cherries into another fermentor until fermentation wears off and then if you want you can rack it back into the barrel. I'd wait until you're happy with the oak character and then pull the beer out of the barrel, do all your blending and bottling and then add cherries to the desired portion in another fermentor. Then start something new in the barrel.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: 3711 tips and tricks
« on: January 24, 2014, 08:27:41 AM »
I start off around 65F and let it free rise into the 70s then I warm it up to the upper 80s. I have been letting it get to 90F but this year I think I am going to dial it back to the mid-80s. You can a lot of flavor out of the higher temperatures but it can also take longer for the yeast to clean up after itself and smooth out, even if you give the yeast lots of oxygen and nutrients. There's a brewery down here that used to use 3711 in all their beers and that was their temperature schedule. They would sit on their beer for 9-12 weeks to let the beer hit its prime before shipping it out.

All Grain Brewing / Re: SNPA grain bill
« on: January 24, 2014, 08:24:07 AM »
I'd also look at how your water may be affecting the malt profile. Any chance your LHBS has changed suppliers? Maybe they are selling you a different crystal malt.

I am pretty sure SN monitors their water carefully and adjusts it frequently.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: commercial examples of Kolsch
« on: January 24, 2014, 08:18:36 AM »
I believe Prost also puts out a kolsch but I forget whether they do not bottle at all or only sell retail in growler-type bottles.

Ingredients / Re: Avangard Pilsner Malt
« on: January 23, 2014, 10:12:03 AM »
Looks like my local shops are starting to sell this as well. Interested to see what you all are getting out of their malts.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Have Brett T, will brew
« on: January 23, 2014, 10:05:59 AM »
Brett fears nothing and eats almost anything.

All Grain Brewing / Re: BIAB advice
« on: January 23, 2014, 10:03:03 AM »
The ability to control your brewing process means it comes with the opportunity to make more mistakes and end up with undesirable results like low efficiency. Those are things you will learn to fix with experience. If you are looking for an easier approach and avoid some of those problems then continuing down the path of extract brewing (perhaps with some partial mashes) might be the right path for you.

BIAB definitely comes with way, way more trub. It's especially a problem if you mill too finely and get a lot of flour in your grist. I don't know what the magical solution is, I'm still thinking through it, but it seems building in the loss to deadspace in the recipe and leaving behind what settles out in the kettle will help out with that process.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: AHA Financials
« on: January 23, 2014, 09:55:09 AM »
It's fairly common for interest groups/organizations to send out info about where the money goes, especially when they are raising dues and/or changing the rules to some of the member benefits. Sometimes you have to sell those changes to your membership. If members are grumpy because they don't feel like they are getting good value for their dues then that is good feedback that it's time for that sales pitch.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: I have an idea for home-brewers
« on: January 23, 2014, 09:38:07 AM »
the actual inventory of the LHBS needs to be reflected when creating the recipe. It would suck to design a recipe using 5 oz. of Centennial, submit the order, and then arrive to the LHBS and find out there is no Centennial in stock. If I had known there is no Centennial ahead of time, maybe I would just hold off and brew the stout recipe I've been working on. Know what I mean?

This is, or at least was, the problem with Brewmaster's Warehouse and the brew builder on their website. I placed my last order with them a couple years ago and made it my last order for this exact problem. Not only did they not have the right items in stock but they wouldn't even tell you after the fact. You just didn't see your order ship and you had to contact them and pester them for the order. I hear people say this problem is fixed but my last experience was so terrible I'm not interested in falling victim to it again. If you're interested in licensing this software to HBS then an integration with inventory will be an important component to avoid these kind of situations. If people hate the software at one shop then other shops probably won't be interested in picking it up themselves.

I don't have any idea how difficult it is to connect this software to an inventory system (it sounds complicated) but it seems like this software would work really well as an app for a phone. It would be handy for people who go to homebrew shops and don't have a recipe or the shop is out of what they need for their recipe. Then they could pull out the app and try to come up with a recipe on the fly. The shops could also use the software purely on their side to match customer preferences to their own kits or recipes.

The Pub / Re: Made by Dad
« on: January 23, 2014, 09:15:53 AM »
We might all be better off
if we spend more time at the public library.

I dunno, I spent a lot of time at the public library when I was a kid. Now I'm a communist pinko lawyer. Is that really what you want for your kids?

All Things Food / Re: recommend some Pots and Pans
« on: January 23, 2014, 09:12:08 AM »
I do a lot of cooking at home and my pots and pans are an assortment of pots and pans. I have a small set of stainless steel pots and pans my brother gave me when he got a nice set of calaphon pots and pans for his wedding (I gave him most of them). I also have a few smaller sauce pans my wife had before we got together. We also have a cheap three piece set of non-stick skillets. Then I also have a wok, a stovetop skillet and a dutch oven. It's probably overkill but out of everything I have I only paid for the skillet. Everything else was a gift. Those non-stick skillets don't last forever so I've gone through a few of them over the years. I do use everything I own.

What you cook, how often you cook and how complex you tend to cook will make a difference in what you need and how you cook. I generally agree with the advice that you should piece together what you need or want unless you really need everything in the set.

I'd say pick a good brand that sells by the piece locally so you can expand as needed. You could probably get by starting with a 12" and 9" slopped-sided skillets (with lids), a 1 or 2 quart saucepan, one large non-stick skillet and a large 1-2 gallons anodized aluminum dutch oven. A large dutch oven like that can be used stove top instead of buying a separate 1.5-2 gallon stock pot that usually comes in the set but you can also use them in the oven up to 500F. That avoids the need to buy separate cast iron pieces for use in the oven, if you ever need it. Yeah, people say it doesn't cook as well in the oven as the ceramic or cast iron dutch ovens but it's what I have and I've been very happy with the results. The aluminum dutch oven also isn't nearly as expensive as a large dutch oven that is oven safe up to 500F. Most of the cheaper ones have plastic handles and/or are known to crack about 400F.

Beer Recipes / Re: Basic Recipes help
« on: January 22, 2014, 08:40:10 AM »
Before you start trying to design recipes I would highly encourage you to learn more about the ingredients available to you and what characteristics they add to a beer. Either brew clone recipes of beers you like so you can see how each of the ingredients transform into a final product where you know what the final product should taste like and/or brew very simple recipes with one hop and extract or extract plus one specialty malt. You can also read as much as you can but you also want that sensory perception.

It's easy to want to get right into recipe building and it can be done but your future recipes will benefit from taking a few batches now and just keeping it simple to learn the ingredients. Otherwise you risk being another one of those people on some of the larger forums asking questions like:

"I want to brew this stout but I don't have any roasted barley. Will it be ok if I use this pound of honey malt instead?"

or making recipes that use every grain available in the LHBS because it was available. Your beer just doesn't need 15 different types of grain.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Cross Contamination Question
« on: January 22, 2014, 08:19:17 AM »
I have been fermenting clean and sour/brett beers side by side for several years now with no cross contamination from proximity. There is bacteria and wild yeast everywhere. If one is getting an infection then it is most likely coming from unclean/unsanitized equipment or somewhere in the environment. It is less likely to be caused by an army of bacteria or yeast marching out of your sour beer, crossing the airlock, flying across the room and marching through another airlock to descend into your beer. In spite of how unlikely that sounds, it does seem like a sizable minority insists this is the case. I think it is more likely just sloppy cleaning and sanitation.

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