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Messages - reverseapachemaster

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: First Yeast Starter questions
« on: December 16, 2015, 10:39:10 AM »
From the color it's not apparent to me whether that is yeast or grain trub or a combination of both. Sedimented yeast will have a creamy off white color while settled grain mass tends to be more brown. If you see swirls or layers of both colors then you have some yeast in there.

Did you see a krausen form? Is there a krausen ring above the wort? That would be a good indication you had fermentation take place.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Growlerwerks
« on: December 16, 2015, 10:35:29 AM »
I found it on Amazon through Google:

Those are some pretty terrible reviews.

A lot of reviews complain about lack of pressure. That seems to be true of most of these growler systems that rely on small CO2 canisters.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Questioning The modern Grisette
« on: December 16, 2015, 09:38:49 AM »
Have you read Farmhouse Ales? That is probably the most extensive discussion of grisette as a style.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Growlerwerks
« on: December 16, 2015, 09:33:54 AM »
No connection with Growlerwerks here, except that I am (patiently) awaiting a 128 oz. growler.  Original delivery expectations were missed, no doubt.  They've kept us informed, and I'm OK with it because that's what Kickstarters are about.

"Large quality issues" doesn't cut to any chase, it just harps on some negative Amazon reviews.  Is that all you have to offer, and is that why you posted this here?  An actual user review would be much more useful.  Anyone who finds this device on Amazon can read the reviews.  Their last email update explained why they supplied Amazon, with unfulfilled Kickstarter backers still unfulfilled.

I'm looking forward to getting mine in the spring.

If that poster is still waiting for the product to arrive from backing the kickstarter campaign then how would he or she possibly be able to provide a user review?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Playing Favorites
« on: December 15, 2015, 09:26:12 AM »
The answer to this question is so easily dependent upon what style I am brewing and what I can get reasonably priced at the time. Generally you can't go wrong targeting grain from the maltsters native to the area from which a given style originates. It's not an accident that much of what we consider authentic about native renditions of many styles is found in the particular aspects of the products of their local maltsters.

That said, much of my brewing is sours and saisons where the grain bill is typically very simple. My preference is usually to use whatever German pils malt I can find from local shops but I have used American pils malt without much difference, especially in the sours. Even when brewing darker sours I feel comfortable using American specialty malts (typically Briess is what's available) because age and fermentation is going to roll off a lot of the finer aspects of the various European varieties. Works fine for Russian River so it's good enough for me.

As far as hops, I tend to bitter with whatever hops I have on hand that will give me a clean bitternes for most beers. For flavor hops I tend to keep on hand cascade plus a handful of European varieties.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Long but productive brew day...
« on: December 14, 2015, 09:42:59 AM »
I feel your pain. I endured a turbid mash yesterday. Started at 10am and ended the boil at 5pm. Then still had to cool and get it in the fermentor. Very long brew day.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: wheat beer with fruit
« on: December 14, 2015, 09:41:02 AM »
You could add baking soda post-fermentation to raise the ph without a significant flavor change.

The Pub / Re: Tweedle dee or tweedle dum
« on: December 12, 2015, 09:26:20 AM »
Tweedle G

Thug Life

Beer Recipes / Re: Smoked Dunkelweizen
« on: December 11, 2015, 08:52:18 AM »
I think you could use the oak smoked wheat if you want. It's about as smooth as rauchmalt but rather than that bacony smoke it's more orange. Think about whether you want that in your beer.

Think about how the phenolics of the cherry smoked malt will play against the phenolics in the yeast. I find the cherry smoked malt the most aggressive and most harsh in terms of phenolics.

Personally I think rauchmalt works best in smoked weizen styles but it's your beer and your vision. Maybe that cherry and orange smoke flavor will work with the banana/clove from the yeast.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Episode 3 - Experimental Brewing
« on: December 10, 2015, 08:29:42 AM »
I generally agree with the points raised in the podcast about the homebrewing industry but would add a number of other factors into the mix.

Along with one gallon and other small batch brewing, other trends in brewing technique lower the need to purchase expensive equipment or continually want to upgrade. BIAB brewing is a good example because once you have a couple pots and a grain bag you're done with your core equipment purchases. To a lesser extent you can also add electric brewing and these all-in-one systems like the zymatic that are one purchase and you're done.

For a long time homebrew shops could get by focusing on selling startup equipment kits and recipe kits but now there's so much information online that the chasm between relying on prepackaged extract kits and piecing together all grain brewing has never been more narrow. Along with all grain brewing comes other typical cost savings measures like bulk purchases and yeast reuse. I see homebrew shops continue to offer intro classes but less in the way of intermediate or advanced classes that might get people in the shop to buy ingredients or equipment along the way. That's a huge missed opportunity. As brewing knowledge advances and more serious homebrewers go all grain many times the shops cease being a source of expertise and the local stores cease offering any competitive reason to beat out better deals online or information that can be sourced elsewhere. Few brewers want to pay $2/oz for cascade hops and get bad information.

The other problem with focusing on making money up front and the cycling away from DIY as the economy has improved is that there are so many startup equipment kits hanging around in garages and closets that if you want to get into brewing you can spend $100 at your local shop or find one for free from a coworker or for $20 on craigslist.

But above all else the growth in the craft brewing industry cannot be overlooked as a key reason for the decline in sales, which is really a decline in sales to new entrants to the hobby. When craft beer is scarce in a market lots of people want to try it but without access can turn to homebrewing. As craft beer appears in the market those people who didn't enjoy homebrewing as much as they accepted the utility were willing to give it up and go buy a $10 six pack. Even in markets where there is lots of craft beer the expansion of that market entices people to go out and try the new beers on the market and as a result there is less of a need to brew at home.

Ingredients / Re: Northern Brewer for porter
« on: December 09, 2015, 03:54:08 PM »
Well, sorry, I'm Belgian, and in Belgian mint and chocolate do not go well.

What is wrong with you.  ???

All Grain Brewing / Re: Hop tea to lower FG??
« on: December 09, 2015, 03:52:41 PM »
I'd think about pitching some fresh yeast (from a starter at high krausen) into the beer and see if it can knock down that FG rather than hope a hop tea doesn't result in too much bitterness and thin the beer out too much.

Have you listened through the Noble Ale Works epsiode on the BN? I think they talk about this beer. I don't remember how much detail they go into.

Equipment and Software / Re: Digital Thermometer
« on: December 09, 2015, 08:56:19 AM »
I'm another happy rt6000c user. I'm among the crowd that couldn't justify spending four times as much on a thermapen. The thermapen claims accuracy +/- 0.7F and a three second reading while the rt6000c claims accuracy +/- 0.9F and a six second reading. I couldn't justify an extra $60 over three seconds and 0.2F.

Equipment and Software / Re: Fermentation Heaters...
« on: December 09, 2015, 08:46:19 AM »
I use reptile tape which is similar to fermwrap but cheaper and available in different sizes. It can raise beer temperature about ten degrees on its own and 20+ degrees inside my fermentation fridge. Running this on a Johnson controller I can set a smooth ramp up and maintain stable warm temperatures within 1-2 degrees.

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