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Messages - dmtaylor

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Dosing thought?
« on: Today at 02:21:01 PM »
1 mL out of 100 mL is probably too high in concentration already, i.e., overpowering.  Try 1 mL at a time in 1000 mL.  Take tiny sips and you can pretty much ignore the 1000 mL going down to 900mL or whatever.

First batch?  Welcome to the hobby!!!  Warning: It's addictive!!!

Using a pre-hopped kit, like 1.7 kilos?  If you want 5% ABV, I think you'll want to use a full kilo of light extract and a half kilo of dextrose.  Or just use cane sugar instead of dextrose, same results.  It would also be wise to steep a few grams of crushed roasted barley, maybe 100-150 grams, something like that, while the water is heating up, but remove it before it reaches 75 C.  This will add extra stouty flavor.

See my generic guidance for beginning brewers here, lots of good stuff for you to think about.  Click to enlarge, then copy and paste into Word and print 'er out if you feel so inclined:

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Hard cider fermentation stuck?
« on: Today at 11:10:28 AM »
If you want a sweetish cider, shoot for 1.010 or even 1.015 finishing gravity.  Yeast will take it lower than that every single time unless you A) kill it or B) use a lot of gelatin and racking and cold temperatures.  I'm in the minority using the B) option all the time on my own ciders.  There's also a C) option known as keeving, which even the experts will tell you is a crapshoot -- I haven't tried it but you can search the universe on the term "keeving" and learn all kinds of interesting stuff.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Hard cider fermentation stuck?
« on: October 05, 2015, 05:36:39 PM »
When gravity stays the same for a full 7-10 days, then just add gelatin.  It will knock the yeast right out of there and clear things up.  Personally I don't use pectinase, never have, so I can't speak to its effectiveness.  Gelatin, on the other hand, usually clears up the cider very nicely, and quickly, within 48 hours.  But only do it after fermentation is done, unless you want to halt fermentation early.

No pumpkin peach ale?  I was sure pumpkin peach was going to be all the rage this season.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Hard cider fermentation stuck?
« on: October 05, 2015, 01:49:58 PM »
Am I just being impatient?

Yes!  Why are you in such a hurry?

Part of your problem might be in racking.  You obviously expect your cider to turn out more dry, because you added more yeast and stated that you are shooting for 0.997.  That's fine.  But if so, then I would argue that you should not have removed 95% of your yeast by racking it.  You could have just left the cider in the primary and allowed that yeast to continue fermentation.

I would not expect a cider to be completed in 14 days, or even 21 days.  I give mine a good 2-3 months to do their thing, especially if you're doing a malolactic which takes more time.  Patience.

If it's cloudy, it's still fermenting, even if the numbers don't change much anymore.  Patience and time.  Leave it alone for a couple weeks.  Then if it's still cloudy, we can talk.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Apple Juice as Hot Liquor?
« on: October 05, 2015, 12:48:29 PM »
I still maintain that less or zero smoked malt be used, unless you're positive you'll like it.  Personally I don't like it, but apparently there are other people out there who do like it!

All Grain Brewing / Re: Apple Juice as Hot Liquor?
« on: October 05, 2015, 12:28:53 PM »
Keith and I have bumped into each other previously on this topic...

I've been making a smoked apple ale for years as well.  This year I decided that I don't really like the smoke too much so I'll delete that from my recipe as a personal preference.  I basically make a small 2-gallon BIAB batch of beer, then warm up a gallon of cider on the side to about 160-170 F for 15 minutes to sanitize and add at the very end of the boil, to make a total of 3 gallons apple ale.  It's quite delicious.  Tart with just a hint of apple, not in your face appley, but pleasant.  I heat my cider but don't boil it, and this helps prevent the cloudiness you would get otherwise.


Shameless self-promotion and resurrection of an old thread, in time for anyone who might be interested in brewing this beer for this lovely fall season....

The above recipe scored Second Best of Show at the Brixie's Brixtoberfest this past weekend out of 183 entries.  Yay.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Winter/Garage Brewing
« on: October 05, 2015, 08:26:25 AM »
Carbon monoxide should be your concern, not condensation.

A colorless, odorless gas?  No problem.  It's not like that can KILL you or anything.  Oh, wait...... it CAN kill you.   :o  Oh, okay. 

Kegging and Bottling / Re: carbonation for 9% ABV beer in bottles
« on: October 05, 2015, 06:57:18 AM »
With respect to a small amount of yeast, for a half-batch (2.75 gal), would that be say, 1/8 of a packet of dry yeast?

Also, can I assume that post-fermentation, the type of yeast would not matter? I have a Belgian Golden Strong fermenting right now. I used Wyeast 1388 and made a starter. I have a packet of Bry-97 in the fridge.

Fairy dust.  A sprinkle of probably 1/16 of a dry pack would be enough for a small batch.

You're correct.  Any live yeast is probably fine.  Personally I would try to stick with the original yeast or something close to it if you have any around.  However, any yeast should work okay.

This is awesome.  While I haven't pondered the pumpkininess of so-called pumpkin beers, I would DARE you to try this same experiment with oatmeal.  Like an oatmeal stout vs. oatless stout.  Try that one.  The latter experiment, I have been wanting to try for quite some time.

you might not want to ruin your beers for the sake of a graph!

Exactly!  Those very few data points on the high end were probably cases where I was drinking a little too much while brewing, and said to myself "aw hell, why not just see how it turns out"!  Those never seem to turn out all that great honestly.  I determined long ago to never ever exceed 154 F anymore, and 153 F is really pushing it as it is.  My personal taste I guess.

Beer Recipes / Re: Biere de… whatever
« on: October 03, 2015, 10:42:41 AM »
Looks very good.  Consider throwing in just a very small amount of Special B, like 4 oz, for something even more special!  I really like your idea of honey malt though as well.  Perhaps a little Munich?  Maybe just 5-7%, for a little complexity and color.  Play around with it, it's all good!

That's a fantastic graph there -- I'm going to save that link for safe keeping.

For whatever it's worth (not much), my own data looks more like a shotgun blasted it a couple of times:

The reason mine is so goofy is probably because it hasn't eliminated all the other variables such as yeast strain, mash time, amount of crystal malts, etc.  This is just a simple plot of every recipe I have made over like the past 10 years, regardless of these variables.  I suppose sometime I might want to whittle it down to more same/similar variables.  But anyway, there you have it.

EDIT: Looking at the data a little more.... I can see that over the range of 144 to 162 F, the Kai graph would show a decrease in attenuation of about 12%.  My own data for that same range of 144-162 F shows a decrease of 9%.  Which is more accurate?  Probably Kai.  But suffice it to say that there does seem to be an effect, which seems to really kick in right at around 155-156 F.  Below that mash temperature, it's pretty much a straight horizontal line, no matter whose graph you look at.  Interesting...........

What we really need for an experiment is a spectrum -- can folks taste the differences between, say, 3 or 4 different beers mashed at maybe 148 F, 151 F, 154 F, and 157 F?  Something like that.  So, it might no longer be the ideal triangle test, because I really think you'd want to compare a whole bunch of samples at one time.  The triangle test might be overused and is not perfect IMHO.

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