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Messages - duncan

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All Grain Brewing / Re: Burning your bag in BIAB?
« on: August 04, 2014, 07:49:16 AM »
Cool idea!

I burned my bag once on the bottom of the pot. Now I use a bungee chord to secure the bag around the rim of pot and have the bottom of the bag hover a couple of inches above the bottom. I just push down on the center of the bag with my spoon until i feel it hit the bottom, then I pull on the sides of the bag hanging below the bungees to get it to hover a few inches. It has held well for my 3-gal batch grist weights.

Let us know how the basket works out, if you try it!


General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Where to start?
« on: July 28, 2014, 01:41:17 PM »
Never done anything besides drink beer.
Searched a few phrases here, but seems most of you guys are way more advanced.

Where is square 1 for learning to brew beer?  (the right way) 

I'm an IPA guy for sure.

Thanks for your time and input. .... some of the best info around.

I would also suggest checking out the Let's Brew section on There are step-by-step tutorials for various methods of brewing across different experience levels. I would suggest starting in the Beginner section or with the "Extract w/ specialty grains" tutorial in the intermediate section. Both utilize malt extracts for all the fermentables, but the specialty grains gets your feet wet in using raw grain ingredients without too much more hassle.

Also, check out Zymurgy: An Introduction to Homebrewing. It is free to download and covers the brewing process for beginners.

And, of course, ask us forum-peeps questions, too!


Other Fermentables / Re: First time cider maker.
« on: July 17, 2014, 12:55:28 PM »
So I meant advice lol not divorce lol. Phone auto corrected. I was going to bottle mine. So do I add priming sugar or just bottle it when it hits 1.000 and let it go. Also for bottling do I have to factor any back sweeteners in as well. 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

you can't bottle condition AND backsweeten. you can backsweeten, stabilize, carb in a keg and then bottle. or you can bottle condition and get dry cider. any sugar you add will be eaten by the yeast until it's gone.

Haven't tried it myself, but this could be an option to backsweeten and bottle....

Hey Everyone,

First, a big thanks for everyone's notes on the section so far. This recipe was taken from the mead making tutorial in a book, except I advocated for the no-heat method isntead of the boiling method used to santize the must in the book.

In regard to the fermentation temperatures, that was one I struggled with, and perhaps it could be worded better. I know lower ferm temperatures will keep the "jet fuel" aspects to a minimum so you don't need as extensive aging, but on the flipside this tutorial is meant for the newbie who might not have the ability to hold fermentation temperatures below 60*F. I think I will go back in and recommend people stick to the lower end of the suggested range, and then on the Mead Making Tips page, have cool fermentation be a tip.

And you guys are totally right that it would be dry. That's interesting seeing as the recipe is listed as medium sweet in the book. I will update that accordingly.

Thanks again for everyone's feedback, and I am all ears if you have other suggestions for improvements. You guys are awesome!


edit: Tutorial and recipe is updated. Will add on to the mead tips about the benefits of lower fermentation temperatures.

Hey AHA forum folk,

I am super excited to announce now has a section dedicated to making mead at home! It is laid out the same was as our Let's Brew beer sections, with a step-by-step tutorial, list of necessary equipment, a discussion about ingredients, and a selection of recipes. There is also some suggested tips for improving your mead making process, which includes things like staggered nutrient additions.

We launched this to coincide with Mead Day 2014 (August 2), which hopefully some of you plan to celebrate!


General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Great homebrew role model
« on: July 15, 2014, 02:48:36 PM »
We ran a post about Annie after she earned the Homebrewer of the Year title in 2013. I caught some flack on social media for highlighting Annie's race and gender in article, but with diversity in the homebrewing community being a hot topic, I thought it was exciting to see the Homebrewer of the Year title go to an African-American (first ever) female (first since 1983).

Whatever your feelings, you can get some more insight on Annie's homebrew history if you are interested.

I'll definitely have to check out the BN podcast to hear her segment. Thanks for sharing!


Events / Re: 2014 GABF
« on: July 15, 2014, 12:03:41 PM »

From the link:  "American Homebrewers Association and Brewers Association members will receive a personal offer code to purchase tickets for this session."

Anybody know more about this?  I assume we will be getting an email with this code.  Any idea when that email will go out?  I get so much crap in my email, I don't want to miss it.

Keep an eye out for an email on July 23.


General Homebrew Discussion / 2014 BJCP Style Guidelines Discussion
« on: June 20, 2014, 09:32:21 AM »
Hey guys,

During the 2014 National Homebrewers Conference, BJCP President Gordon Strong gave a talk on the changes coming to the BJCP Style Guidlines. Chip Walton and the Chop & Brew team caught the talk on video. Check it out here:

What does everyone think of the changes?


Check out the full results from the 2014 Best Beers in America survey!

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 2014 NHC Seminars
« on: June 19, 2014, 07:44:43 AM »
Hey guys,

I got most of the seminars up just now. We are still wrangling some missing presentations, but we've got the audio covered. You can find them here (don't forget to log into the site!):


General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 2014 NHC Seminars
« on: June 17, 2014, 10:05:17 AM »
Awesome Duncan, thanks for all your efforts.  I don't mind waiting a month or two...I'm sure the AHA folks need a little break after getting back home from NHC too.

Great conference and can I say your security detail are people not to be messed with, but are some of the nicest people at the conference.

I think I can safely say it won't take a month, but I won't make any promises yet  :D. Stay tuned...

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 2014 NHC Seminars
« on: June 17, 2014, 07:24:36 AM »
I get conference seminars published on the web as fast as I can, but right now I am still waiting on the audio and some visual presentations. Once I have all the attachments, it will be a priority to get them available to members. I will post on social media and in the forum once they are available.

And for those who aren't aware, we post conference seminars (audio and visual presentations) under the Let's Brew Resources section on We have full coverage starting in 2012. Check 'em out.

Thanks for your patience!


Hey all,

The list of the 2014 National Homebrew Competition winners are available online. You can also access 2014 First Round winners and past year's competition results by following the link atop the winner's list.

Thanks to all who entered, organized, volunteered and judged during the competition! This is not possible with you all. And congratulations to those who advanced and placed in the Final Round of the competition!


All Things Food / Re: Beer grilled cheese
« on: June 05, 2014, 08:37:30 AM »

Add some ham and you got yourself one badass beer-Monte Cristo.


The Brewers Association and AHA are moving to a new office building! More details about can be found here.

During the move, some web functions will be temporarily unavailable and these are highlighted in the article linked above. We anticipate this period to be a few hours in the afternoon of Friday, May 30th. If you experience unusual quirks on our website, chances are it is related to this move. Please bear with us!

The forum is expected to work as normal, except you will need to login directly to the forum, since login on will be down.

Thank you for your patience during this transition!

Duncan & the AHA

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