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Messages - dmtaylor

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Beer Recipes / Re: Citra Blonde Critique
« on: September 12, 2013, 06:24:14 PM »
Sometimes what it seems on paper is not how it ends up.

That is a good point as well.

Beer Recipes / Re: Citra Blonde Critique
« on: September 12, 2013, 04:48:50 PM »
Throw the Carapils in the garbage, and you're good to go!

Beer Recipes / Re: Strong dark Belgian ideas from mixed grains
« on: September 11, 2013, 06:38:07 PM »
A quad is a bad place to use much crystal malts, period.  Belgian beers are supposed to be highly attenuated.  So you really don't want to add anything that will INCREASE the body and DECREASE attenuation.  Especially in a quad, where the OG is so high.  The yeast can only attenuate so far, percentage-wise.  You don't want to end up with a final gravity of like 1.030, right?!  So don't use much crystal malt, if at all, IMHO.

The comment about cherry candy also applies to the aromatic malt.  In high quantities, at least in my mind, aromatic malt has a certain cherry-like fruitiness that can easily get carried away.  You don't want to use too much of it.

Beer Recipes / Re: Strong dark Belgian ideas from mixed grains
« on: September 11, 2013, 02:20:43 PM »
I would use a quarter of the whole mix for your quad, not half.  Beyond the quad, I would never use more than about 2 or 2.5 lbs of the mix for any standard gravity 5 gallon batch.  Otherwise it will be too heavy -- end up tasting like cherry candy or something like that.  Good idea though, still being able to use it up over time.  Keep it vacuum sealed if you must to keep it from going stale.

All Grain Brewing / Re: equal amounts for 1st and 2nd runnings
« on: September 11, 2013, 02:12:42 PM »
I disagree.  I've done it and conversion is just fine.

I agree with you, Dave, but that seems like so much extra effort when you could just mash thinner in the first place.

Just presenting yet another option.  I'm not saying that I do it a lot, but I've done it a couple times and it works.  Of course these days I brew in a bag and skip the sparge altogether half the time.  Doesn't get any easier than that.  Crush like mad, mash as normal, pull the bag out, and roll.

All Grain Brewing / Re: equal amounts for 1st and 2nd runnings
« on: September 11, 2013, 08:35:08 AM »
I disagree.  I've done it and conversion is just fine.

All Grain Brewing / Re: equal amounts for 1st and 2nd runnings
« on: September 10, 2013, 07:18:09 PM »
Instead of sparging so much, add part of your hot sparge water to the mash before the first runnings so that your two runnings will be equal.  Or if you want really awesome efficiency, mash super thick at like 0.9 qt/lb and then sparge twice so that your runnings are 1/3 of the total volume each.  This is overkill, but it would certainly maximize your efficiency.

We made a club brew a few years ago with Frosted Flakes and an entire German chocolate cake.  It was one of the worst beers I ever tasted.  Dumped it all down the drain.

However now I just made a batch of pale ale with Grape Nuts about 10 days ago.  Tasted it a couple days ago.  It needs more hops, but it tastes very good.  I don't taste any Grape Nutty flavor, but it tastes just fine as a regular pale ale.  I think I used around 15 or 20% Grape Nuts for the total grist, and I really don't taste it in the final beer at all.  Next time I'll have to try a higher percentage.  Of course, Grape Nuts is kind of like cheating -- unlike most other cereals, its primary ingredients are wheat and malted barley.

Go all-grain, and do smaller batches.  This will require you to brew more often, thus gaining more experience with all-grain, but without the need for fancy equipment, and fewer bottles to fill at one time.  You can very easily brew 2.5 or 3 gallon batches using BIAB.  Doesn't cost a thing really, and in fact will save you a lot of money over extract, AND it tastes better.  Then after you gain some experience with all-grain, get the equipment for bigger batches, do a few batches at that size, and then when you get tired of bottling 50 bottles at one time, get your kegging equipment.

Or, go the other way, buy your kegging equipment now, but just keep it on the shelf for a while since you can simultaneously start brewing small batches all-grain BIAB without spending an extra dime.  Then when you've got the cash and experience to start brewing 5 gallons all-grain, you can worry about kegging, and you'll already have the stuff AND the all-grain experience.  How's that sound.

Beer Recipes / Re: Should I just give up on lagers?
« on: September 04, 2013, 09:06:47 AM »
Off the top of my head...

For a Bohemian pilsner, you don't need any salt.  Use distilled, and adjust pH by adding about 4% acidulated malt (well, exchange it for part of the pilsner malt).

For just about any other lager, use about 1 to 1.5 teaspoons each of gypsum and calcium chloride.

For styles known for having very hard water (e.g., Dortmunder), you can probably go a little higher to 2 teaspoons each.

For any beer containing a reasonable degree of dark roasted malt (e.g., schwarzbier), you can optionally add about 0.5 teaspoon of baking soda.  But personally, I might not do it, and if I did I would add it to the boil, not the mash.

If you want to use any epsom salt, sprinkle it in like a tiny amount of fairy dust -- you do not need very much of it at all.  We're talking like 1/10 of a teaspoon or something like that, and this goes for any and all styles.  But I find it is optional.

That's about it, in a nutshell.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How long to boil to rid chlorine?
« on: September 03, 2013, 07:22:45 AM »
Water's boiling point is 212F, yet there is still water in the kettle after boiling for over an hour.  ;D

Chlorine is highly volatile at standard temperature and pressure.  In fact it prefers to be a gas.  But water, not so much.  Water has a high "heat of vaporization" at standard temperature and pressure, and can only evaporate up to 100% relative humidity near the kettle, beyond which it evaporates and recondenses at the same rate.  It would much rather be liquid water at standard temperature and pressure, but will reluctantly convert to vapor with a lot of energy.

Yes, chlorine (which is actually a very low concentration in the form of hypochlorite which degrades to form chlorine gas) will evaporate out of water to non-detectable levels at standard temperature and pressure if left overnight prior to brewing.


All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Efficiency Problem
« on: September 02, 2013, 06:01:54 PM »
If you want the best efficiency, collect and boil every single drop.  Otherwise your efficiency will definitely take a hit.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: First RIS - not quite done
« on: September 02, 2013, 09:37:22 AM »
With a huge amount of LME, plus maltodextrin which is unfermentable, it's done.  You are safe to go ahead and bottle.  Whoever designed the recipe is... of old-school intellect.  I'm tired of seeing extract recipes with maltodextrin.  We know better now in the 21st century.  Extract has variable fermentability.  Next time try another brand of extract.  Or, start doing partial mash at 148 F for an hour to improve fermentability AND flavor.  Cheers.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Mash Efficiency Problem
« on: September 01, 2013, 07:09:56 PM »
I know you were shooting for Denny, but IMHO, the answer is, no, it doesn't matter.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How long to boil to rid chlorine?
« on: September 01, 2013, 04:02:52 PM »
Good luck with the 5.2.

Ha ha ha ha ha ha... (some would say "LOL!")

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