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Messages - fmader

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31
I used to use much higher levels of sulfate in my hoppy beers (300ish) and have backed off to just over half that. I like the hops accentuated without the minerally bite nowadays. Personal preference.

I agree. I only brewed a couple pale ales of sorts in the 300 range after beginning with water chemistry. I think 150-160ppm is the sweet spot for my palette as well.
My range is 125-150ppm. As a matter of fact, 125ppm is the highest I will target for any ion except for a hoppy beer that needs a little boost in dryness (like a Red X IPA, for example).

You're completely out of hand with such low numbers!  :P

32
Here's another one. Probably not best practice at all but....

I have complete trust in Bru'n Water as I do not own a pH meter.

33
I used to use much higher levels of sulfate in my hoppy beers (300ish) and have backed off to just over half that. I like the hops accentuated without the minerally bite nowadays. Personal preference.

I agree. I only brewed a couple pale ales of sorts in the 300 range after beginning with water chemistry. I think 150-160ppm is the sweet spot for my palette as well.

34
My wife says this about me:  don't always explain the answer, just give it.  When talking with Homebrewers I tend to think that everyone wants to "swim in the deep waters"; I tend to forget that the casual homebrewer and new guy just want to know what to do in a situation, not so much the why.....

All levels are equally important to the hobby.  The new guys bring energy and the old guys bring stability and mentoring.  I resolve to be a more intentional, but not excessive mentor in 2017.

Very good advice. A guy at work got his first extract kit for Christmas. I had so much advice to give him. But instead, I kept it simple with some solid pointers and allowed him to ask me questions after the brew day. One thing that he keeps fighting me with is a secondary and how his brother insists on how it's necessary and the instructions say to rack it. It's a Fat Tire clone. I think I have him convinced to just leave it on the yeast lol.

35
Mine....

- Bourbon aged beer. If I wanted a reminder of my poor drinking/life decisions from my college years I would drink bourbon and chase it with beer. I simply don't want my beer to taste like I just took a shot and chased it with beer...or a reminder of bad decisions from my youth.

- Running into homebrew clubs when abroad...this has happened twice and it ruined both tours with members of the club relentless peppering the staff with highly technical questions and then arguing with them to prove they were right. Shut up, learn what you can, and be grateful to them sharing their knowledge.

Bourbon beers are about the hottest thing right now too. I tell you what... I was right there with you 2-3 years ago when this started to become trendy. Most were plane bad. Tasted like bourbon cough syrup. I will have to admit that some breweries are getting much better at their aging process and are serving up some nicely blended flavors of beers. Revolution's Deth's Tar is one of the best beers I've ever had.

By no means am I telling you that you're wrong, because I certainly get it. Just thought it was an opportunity to share my experience with bourbon beers as well.  :P There are still some bad ones out there too.

36
My new blue cooler mash tun isn't as efficient as my old blue cooler mash tun. I'm beginning to question the amount of mashing magic that blue coolers maufactured after 2015 have. It figures since everybody is trying to cut corners to up their profits nowadays!

37
I like simcoe and apparently like cat piss. I think I might save $20 this year and not buy a pound and just hold the neighbors cat over the kettle and squeeze the piss out of it into my wort. I'm a little weary about dry hopping with pure cat piss though. Think it will infect my beer?


I guess we'd call it 'wet hopping' under the circumstances. Might be a tad...........pungent.  ;D   I'm a big Simcoe fan, too. I think it's like the cilantro thing - people love it or think it tastes like plastic, no in between. My wife swears Simcoe is like cat pee to her, too. It's interesting how people can perceive the exact same thing so differently.

Lol... my wife lumps all super hoppy beers into the "dish soap" category. She doesn't get far enough into it to differentiate between Dawn or Palmolive.

But you're right. That's how I am with Mosaic. Most say they get a nice fruity blueberry flavor. I get a very bland straw-like taste. Mental perception plays a big part in it as well. I can drink a beer and know it has mosaic in it... It's in my mind already that I don't like that beer. There's only been a couple commercial examples that I've had that I like.

38
Simcoe hops are delicious and in no way taste or smell remotely like cat pee!

I agree that they're delicious, especially when used together with other hops like Amarillo. BUT, I used to agree with you, thinking that people were crazy to equate the aroma with cat pee. Then I went to a cat shelter and visited their enclosed outdoor area. Totally smelled like Simcoe.

When you have 5 cats.... you don't want that in your beer.  While I can't say I know what cat pee tastes like, I sure as F know what it smells like, in all its forms, whether fresh in the litter box, or dried up and nasty in the corner, and everything in between.  It's nasty.
Cat pee is ammonia, hell to the no is that anything like hops. If someone hates simcoe, they need to find a different descriptor.

I like simcoe and apparently like cat piss too. I think I might save $20 this year and not buy a pound of simcoe and just hold the neighbors cat over the kettle and squeeze the piss out of it into my wort. I'm a little weary about dry hopping with pure cat piss though. Think it will infect my beer?

39
I don't know if mine is unpopular or not. But, I don't like to drink while I'm brewing. It's a matter of safety and paying attention to detail.

I feel that you are more in the norm. I always feel outcasted when I say that I drink when I brew. My wife already thinks that I am wasting the day brewing. So, I figured I'd waste days more efficiently and kill two birds with one stone and drink during the brew day. In saying this, I'm usually not drunk until clean up. But I start the day with a half a breakfast stout with a hearty breakfast. Then it's a hot scotchy (In the summer, it's a scotchy on the rocks). Then I usually split a mix a six with my brew partner throughout the day.

As far as safety goes.... Well, I use plastics and a pump.

This is my "unpopular brewing opinion."

40
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: RO Water
« on: December 24, 2016, 02:10:15 AM »
After 8+ years of brewing I finally brewed my first beer where I built my water from RO water.    One question I have is when do I add all the brewing salts? I just added them into the mash thinking they would transfer over into the finished beer.

Add them two your kettle before adding your mash water to heat. Then stir really well.  The pouring, stirring, and hearing of the water will allow them to dissolve best. Same thing with your salts that you would add to your spare water. You definitely will want to add them prior to the mash, this way that you can ensure that your mash pH is appropriate.

41
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: My Brew Years Resolution
« on: December 21, 2016, 06:54:45 AM »
After about 3 1/2 years of obsessing on brewing, then a few months of stepping back, still brewing but not obsessing... this year I'm going to work on balance.  Brew when I want and what I want, fish when I want, ride my Harley when I want... adding in a dash of gardening, bbqing, noodling around on stringed instruments, camping, checking out the total eclipse etc.

I'm glad I went crazy on brewing and learned what I learned, but now I'm enjoying just enjoying it.

Yes. I took my step back last year and then again this past summer. It's a wonderful hobby, but balance is key. I miss fishing (in fact I didn't buy a license this year), so that's also a goal of mine for next year.
If an obsession exists this year it will probably be fishing. I have both washington and Oregon license, and I recently got into fly fishing. In particular, two handed spey casting Skagit heads, swinging flies for stealhead. So far no fish but at least I've gotten to where I can cast the thing lol. With January coming i am looking forward to the winter runs on the Hood and Washougal.

I love how styles of fishing changes by region. There's nowhere to really catch any native trout around here. Just stocked if you want to deal with that nonsense. I hope to spend more nights on the banks of the Ohio River in search for that monster flathead or make a couple walleye or perch trips to Lake Erie. My grandfather passed away 10 days ago. He and I fished almost every day when I was younger. We spoke on thanksgiving... neither one of us got a license this year. That didn't sit well with me. I owe it to him to get out and drown some worms next year..... Of course with a home brew in hand  ;)

42
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: My Brew Years Resolution
« on: December 20, 2016, 08:20:34 AM »
After about 3 1/2 years of obsessing on brewing, then a few months of stepping back, still brewing but not obsessing... this year I'm going to work on balance.  Brew when I want and what I want, fish when I want, ride my Harley when I want... adding in a dash of gardening, bbqing, noodling around on stringed instruments, camping, checking out the total eclipse etc.

I'm glad I went crazy on brewing and learned what I learned, but now I'm enjoying just enjoying it.

Yes. I took my step back last year and then again this past summer. It's a wonderful hobby, but balance is key. I miss fishing (in fact I didn't buy a license this year), so that's also a goal of mine for next year.

43
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: My Brew Years Resolution
« on: December 19, 2016, 12:27:53 PM »
I was able to upgrade my equipment this year which is allowing me to brew less. I know that sounds terrible, but I'm enjoying other things a little bit more as well. I only brewed 7 or 8 batches this year, which is down from 22 last year. Though I brewed less batches, I brewed two 16.5 gallon batches while the rest were 11 gallon batches. I would like to continue this more relaxed brewing pace next year especially with a baby on the way in April. I think 10 batches would be a comfortable target. If it ends up being 6, I suppose that's fine too as long as I'm staying busy with other hobbies.

44
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« on: December 13, 2016, 04:47:20 PM »
I just brewed on Saturday and it was about 20 degrees.  Everything was good until I realized my hose was frozen, then by the time I reconfigured to cut out the hose, my chiller had frozen... Then my Starsan spray bottle... oh, and my deck... things got pretty dicey out there once the sun went down!!

Lol yeah... I've dealt with a frozen hose before. We bring them inside before brewing now.

45
General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What's the coldest I can brew?
« on: December 11, 2016, 07:20:57 PM »
I brewed a batch a couple years ago when was -2F when we kicked the burner on. It reached a high of 3F that day. It was pretty miserable, but to be honest, I'd rather brew in those temperatures than when it's 100 degrees out. You can brew in those types of extremes in Ohio lol.

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