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Messages - BrodyR

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Irish ales seem pretty simple but I've seen several recipes that have different ingredients to make them red. What is the key to a real nice red color? And a good taste?

Who has a great Irish ale recipe?

I haven't tried one in a while but the recipe I was thinking about trying is 85% Marris Otter, 10.5 % C-20, 2.5% dehusked Carafe III , 2% Acid Malt.

General Homebrew Discussion / The importance of Freshness
« on: February 23, 2015, 10:36:46 PM »
Just put my American Pale Ale homebrew (Marris Otter/Oats, Conan yeast, loads of late/dry Amarillo & Simcoe, unintentional pellicle) up against a 3month old Hill Farmstead Edward growler in a blind taste test. Somehow everyone preferred mine.

Not saying I brew better beer than HFS, I definitely don't, but it shows how critical freshness is in pale ale/IPA and why we should buy our beer local instead of from California or Germany... unless you're a Californian or German.

Ingredients / Re: Pale Ales and color
« on: February 22, 2015, 07:46:14 PM »
I've become a fan of no crystal in Pales. I think it's worth it to try a batch without and adjust up.

I used to always go with a bit of C-60 but now do 100% pale (usually marris otter) or throw in some flaked oats for body. I first got turned onto the idea when I tried the Tired Hands - Hop Hands clone recipe.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: AHA offers not honored
« on: February 17, 2015, 10:53:03 PM »
Next time I go to tröegs im going to see if they honor the free tasting tour but this time of year is tuff for us to get down to Hershey one of these days lol,  that's a bummer they woln't honor it wonder if it was a change of ownership and the old owner honored it and the new owner has no clue about it

Troegs (I really had to fight auto correct to get that name typed...) is awesome! I've made the trek from Philly a couple times. I didn't realize they offered an AHA perk, I'll have to test that out as well. And enjoy a giant grilled cheese while I'm there.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Horrific Infection
« on: February 17, 2015, 10:50:02 PM »
Well the beer is now kegged up and I pulled a sample today - surprisingly no off flavours, certainly not sour. My guess is that it was a wild yeast that didn't have enough time to develop into any strong flavor. Hopefully now that it's racked and cold it will stay that way.

I brewed the same batch right after with the other vial which is fermenting away atm. Will be interesting to compare it.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hop Teas and other Hoppy techniques
« on: February 12, 2015, 08:21:20 AM »
Eric - yea, I'm thinking about going nuts and throwing a whole pound in a 4.5 gallon batch and see what happens.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Hop Teas and other Hoppy techniques
« on: February 12, 2015, 08:19:24 AM »
My opinions... (ask 5 others and you will get 6 more opinions)

1.) I do not like the strategy of having the wort less than boil and above 170 for an hour... that is asking for off flavors.  10 to 15 minutes would be plenty. 
2.) I would add charges at 10 minutes of boil, 5 minutes of boil and 0 minutes of boil, and see what that does.... the charcter of adding hops is differet depending on the time you drop them in... and I think you need a RANGE of character to get the full hop effect you are looking for. Adding a bunch at one shot, give you a limited range of hop character.
3.) Compare finishing gravity of your beer to your favorite beer.  You may need to get your beer dow to 1.008 or below to get the mouth feel you are looking for.  (get the body of the beer out of the way a bit so the hops shine through)
4.) your more hops idea is probably a good idea.  I think you get everything out of the hops in about 10 to 15 minutes...once the stuff is in the wort, the green stuff is just taking up space.  (again opinion)  The hop stand you are doing at the end between boil and 175.... is a good thing, just not for an hour.  No added benefit for going past 15 minutes, and there are some cons that make me wrinkle my nose at the idea.

I appreciate all the input!

Concerning the hop stand: I'm trying to find the link that details the results of a taste test experiment with hop stand duration as well as dry hopping. The gist was that the longer hop stands, I believe it was 60 or 90m, produced a lot more hop flavor than the shorter (30m) stand which is why I go for the long time. However, as you warned, I did just get an infection in a pale ale that underwent a long hop stand (although it could be coincidence rather than causation). I just googled it again and came across a claim that it's really at 170f and below that risk of an infection occurs so one thought was to increase my temperature. But then another test trial revealed 170f stands to produce the best flavor ( which makes sense since you're blowing off less oils.

Concerning timing: Yea, I think I would love to brew two identical beers one where I hop at 20, 10, 5, 0 and another with all those hops added to the steep and a single charge at 60/FWH or maybe try to get all the IBU's from a hotter hop stand.

Concerning Gravity: My beer's have all attenuated fairly low. The current one is 1.007 (or was it 1.006?). But along the same line of thought of letting the hops shine maybe I'll try US 2 Row instead of Marris Otter in a batch.


General Homebrew Discussion / Hop Teas and other Hoppy techniques
« on: February 11, 2015, 08:31:34 PM »
My favorite style lately has been very hoppy pale ale's. Especially those that come close mimicking the intense ad resiny character of a solid double IPA but with a reasonable ABV. As a result I've been mostly brewing pale ale's lately and thinking a lot about hopping technique.

I came across the hop tea method and wondered if anyones had any experience with it and thoughts on maximising hop aroma and flavor in general? I just experimented with it tonight on the extreme end by adding a 2oz F7 tea to a keg with maybe 1-2 gallons left, I'll have a pint tomorrow and see how that goes.

My Current Hopping regime:

1) Obtain all my bitterness (usually ~30ibus) from a single addition of CTZ or an Apollo Hop Shot at First Wort
2) Cool the wort down to 170f and add around an oz/gallon to steep for an hour stirring occasionally.
3) Dry hop around ½ oz per gallon twice. Once in the primary a couple weeks after the brew day and a second time in the keg in a canister when I transfer 3 weeks in. I'll let that sit around 60f for 3-7 days before dropping it in the kegerator.

I buy my hops by the pound. To store I wrap up the back, rubber band it, then throw it in a freezer bag for cold storage. I've heard of people C02 purging their hops but I've never tried it. Also I adjust my water appropriately for pale ale.

I've been hitting the bitterness I like and some fairly solid hop flavor/aroma but I'm no where near that intense fresh resiny flavor of cracking a Heady Topper or a really fresh IPA at a local brew pub. The hop tea was one thought, as was adding hops throughout the boil instead of the lone 60m/FWH buttering addition. And another thought was to add even more hops.

Any thoughts on what works for you guys to maximize hop character? 

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Horrific Infection
« on: February 11, 2015, 03:26:36 PM »
If you had active fermentation that yielded an ABV higher than 2% or so, its safe to drink.

I wouldn't toss the other yeast pack. The infection source is MUCH more likely to happen on the homebrewer side than the yeast lab side, no matter how sophisticated your setup.

You can't determine the type of yeast/bacteria from the pellicle. As stated by others, lacto/pedio and most other bacteria are less likely because of the APA hop load and short time frame. Wild yeast (brett, etc.) is the most probable source.

Acetobacter is another possibility if you have too much oxygen pickup after fermentation starts. Excessive headspace in the fermentor or frequent sampling can introduce acetobacter and oxygen. I'd consider it a distant second, though.

Given the above, taste it. If the beer is sour, its most likely bacteria. If its not sour, it is most likely Brett/wild yeast.

In either case, its a risk to future batches to keep the old plastic parts around. However if you're on a budget, you can still keep them and minimize risk.

Give your bucket, lid, airlock, and any other cold side soft parts a good soak in PBW, then rinse well and soak with Star San. No need for high concentrations of either. DO NOT USE BLEACH. Its unnecessary and permeates plastic. Bad news. IMO bleach has no place in any brewery.

Appreciate all the input:

Yea, I got down to 1.010 with ~5% abv.
Agreed - I'd assume White Labs QC is a lot better than mine.
I estimated 30IBU's + massive steeped hops at 170f
I'll rack into the keg in a few days (after dry hopping), crash it, and let everyone know how it tastes.
I do have some extra carboys around so maybe I'll delegate this one to other, non fermentation, tasks.
The bleach idea scares me a bit too but definitely PBW/Star San

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Horrific Infection
« on: February 10, 2015, 06:04:11 PM »
Which Yeast Bay yeast did you use? I have used several of their sour blends and that is exactly what it looked like. I wonder if they sent you the wrong yeast, or maybe it was mislabeled. Let it ride and maybe it will turn out pretty good!

Vermont, the Conan one. Yea we'll see how it rolls - I bought 2 vials. Was planning on reusing this one but will scrap it with the infection and brew the same beer with the second one for comparison.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Horrific Infection
« on: February 10, 2015, 03:43:50 PM »
that picture looks like a new planet   :o

Yea.. sigh... hahah.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Horrific Infection
« on: February 10, 2015, 03:37:09 PM »
Since it is hoppy, I think it probably is not Lacto. It could be brett, but you'll really need to taste it and report back. By the way, I think it looks awesome because I just got into making sours over a year ago, however, I intended for them to look that way.

Hmm, lacto doesn't like hops? I haven't tried any sours so unfamiliar.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Horrific Infection
« on: February 10, 2015, 03:25:07 PM »
Not really fuzzy and no, I haven't been messing with any Brett/Lacto/Pedio. I wonder how much effect a but of Lacto will have on a hoppy pale ale.

General Homebrew Discussion / Horrific Infection
« on: February 10, 2015, 02:30:58 PM »

What horror is this? I tried my normal pale ale with a variance of Vermont Ale Yeast ordered from the yeast bay. Fermentation seemed pretty mellow by airlock activity/krausen but gravity was dropping so I let it be. I went to dry hop and discovered this. Think it's safe to drink? Think I should ditch the bucket after?

Beer Recipes / Re: Imperial Stout Recipe
« on: February 08, 2015, 12:50:03 PM »
I do agree that the vienna and/or munich will get lost in all the roasty goodness.  Meaning, that you won't be able to taste the difference between the two.  So I would either go with vienna OR munich, not both.  Have you considered any crystal or caramunich malt to balance the roast a bit?

Maybe caramunich instead of Munich + Vienna?

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