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Messages - kylekohlmorgen

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Older Roeselare packet
« on: July 06, 2012, 01:40:27 PM »
using the beer as an excuse to buy good sour beer is still recommended
Obviously you've never bought beer in Canada.  Sours are practically non-existant.  Some for Brett beers.  But, I love Goose Island Matilda (my only Brett experience) so we'll give it a go.
I do think I'll do a very small starter (1L) just to see if there is any activity.

I apologize for inadvertently rubbing it in. I just read the "went to Canada on Vacation" thread this morning.

Befriend your local distributors and then start clambering for more selection. Have your homebrew friends do this as well. Take to Facebook/Twitter.

ALSO if you're patient, you can brew some damn fine sours at home as well.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: how are you using maris otter?
« on: July 06, 2012, 02:15:31 AM »
I say try 100% in a pale ale and, if the malt character is out of balance for your liking, scale it back to 75/25, then 50/50.

I love using 100% in my hoppy beers, but in IPAs I really like the grainy flavor from American 2-row. Its also cheaper, if you're buying in bulk!

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Best Yeast for an Oatmeal Stout?
« on: July 06, 2012, 02:11:51 AM »
If you're a Rogue fan, go for the Pac Man. Its what makes Rogue beers taste like Rogue beers.

I personally do NOT care for that yeast, just for its flavor contribution. But, this is why we homebrew. To tailor the beer to our tastes!

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Older Roeselare packet
« on: July 06, 2012, 02:09:50 AM »
In a recent issue of Zymurgy, Chad Yakobson from Crooked Stave Brewery recommends that better results can be achieved by making a starter with your Brett culture.  I would think this to be the case especially in your case since the pack is pretty far past the viable date.  It certainly wouldn't hurt to try.

A starter culture is for primary fermentation with Brett. If you're adding to secondary, you can just pitch what you have (i.e. the old packet). Brett and the buggers will live on.

You can get great results from just pitching bottle dregs, so you'll have enough viable yeast in the old packet to make a difference (although using the beer as an excuse to buy good sour beer is still recommended  ;D)

Equipment and Software / Re: Mash tun frustration
« on: June 27, 2012, 03:52:31 PM »
What is your batch size? 5-gal seems like a lot of hassle (unless you're forced to brew small).

Can't go wrong with Denny's model, IMO:

Equipment and Software / Re: Aeration? How important is the method?
« on: June 27, 2012, 03:48:41 PM »
I have to say that I don't know that I've noticed any difference in lag times going from an aquarium pump set up to bottled O2.

I suppose this is an opportunity for a side-by-side fermentation just to see...

I doubt you would in average-gravity beers, but I'll bet it makes a difference in REALLY big brews.

I just went with O2 because it was basically the same price AND I could buy it from the LHBS instead of Lowe's, etc.

All Things Food / Re: Growing food - The Garden Thread
« on: June 27, 2012, 03:44:26 PM »
I have one of these that I got from my parents years ago.  It works very well.  They are a bit pricey though.

Betcha I could make one of these. I'll ponder (and possibly Google) this afternoon...

I like dried peppers (anchos, chipotles) because you get a lot of flavor (plus a little smokiness) without a lot of heat.

Those are 2 the greatest peppers ever! Especially ancho, which are dried poblanos. It tastes like a spicy raisin.

A TON of flavor depth to the dried chilies. I'm planning to brew an amber lager (Somewhere between Vienna and Oktoberfest) with ancho in the keg late this summer. Should be great with fall bbq's.

I've also added ancho/chipotle to a kolsch keg with FANTASTIC results.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Plate Chiller or Whirlpool
« on: June 27, 2012, 02:36:25 PM »
I am going to stick w/ my current IC and make a second IC that I will have sitting in an ice bath to cool down the water going to the wort chiller.

I tried this first and found the second IC chiller really decreased the flowrate and didnt really cool the water all that much. Plus its still wasting a lot of water.

Buying the Pond Pump at lowes along with the hose and hose fittings was cheaper than buying another IC. I traded my two 3/8" ID ICs in for one homemade 1/2" IC. That also helped a lot.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Attenuation and Infection
« on: June 27, 2012, 02:32:32 PM »
I disagree on infection causing the low FG.

Even the *accidental* strains of brett take quite awhile to achieve super-attenuation (fermentation of normally unfermentable sugars). How long does it take to get to your FG?

155F isn't THAT high of a mash temp. If you aren't using any crystal malts, I wouldn't be surprised to see a FG in the 1.008-1.009 range. This is especially true if your mash temp falls a few degrees during the mash, it takes awhile for you to lauter, or if your mash thermometer is off.

I would check out the thermometer first. Then, think about mashing a bit higher. To get in the 1.015 range for my English Pale, I mash at 158-162 (depending on target starting gravity, amount of crystal, etc.).

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Aerate Starter?
« on: June 27, 2012, 02:25:16 PM »
I like the aeration idea, but a stir plate is a good addition, especially if you're heating with a heat pad or reviving old yeast (to keep it in suspension).

I pinged my microbio friend about this recently - stir plates (or shaker tables, normally) work in a lab because they are in a sanitary environment (usually lots of samples under a fume hood). A growler in your basement is a different story.

Speaking of - does anyone use temp control on a starter? With intermittent shaking and the small amount of volume, I never gave it much thought (unless I'm culturing lacto).

Ingredients / Re: Rosemary Dry hopping
« on: June 27, 2012, 01:48:01 PM »
No worries about contamination.

I would taste it often, though. Rosemary can get very strong very quickly!

I love the idea, though - I've had a few commercial beers with Rosemary and I'd like to try some in my IPA recipe.

What is the beer its going into?

Equipment and Software / Re: Give Up on ProMash??
« on: June 26, 2012, 02:49:00 PM »
I don't want to sound like my dad (his hatred of power windows on cars is legendary), but more features and gadgets often means you have less control.  ProMash does the calculations I need without doing stuff that I don't need (and often don't trust).  I hate seeing things like FG calculations that people trust blindly just because the software said so.  It's a tool, no more, no less.

I've downloaded/trialed other brewing programs (and even made my own spreadsheets) to test the accuracy of some of the calculations. I'm like you - I don't trust the machine unless I can see the moving parts.

I'm probably going to stick with ProMash until (like any other tool in my brewery) I feel its hampering my progress/success as a brewer.

I'll put the $30 towards something else for the brewery...

Equipment and Software / Re: Aeration? How important is the method?
« on: June 26, 2012, 02:42:03 PM »
I just bought an oxygenation system (~$50 total) this weekend because I was brewing a big imperial stout (1.115 OG).

I followed the instructions and was blown away by the reduced lag phase. The fermentation was VERY active in 6-8 hours. I'm only 2 days into the fermentation, but I'm sold on O2. Its a pretty cheap way to encourage yeast health and reduce fermentation times.

All Grain Brewing / Re: melanoidin in an amber?
« on: June 26, 2012, 02:37:25 PM »
I just put .25 lbs in an amber recently, and I think it tastes quite nice. It was a 3 gallon batch. I'm pretty sure Denny uses it in his Waldo Lake Amber as well.

Waldo Lake Amber is still the best amber I've ever brewed. I now use the malt bill and adjust the hops to my tastes.

I like a more complex malt profile than an American Pale or an English Bitter, but you should err on the side of fewer, higher quality malts than more types of malts. Since malt profile is secondary to hops (although a closer second than pale), "complex" can turn to "muddy" fairly easily.

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