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Messages - Joe Sr.

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Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Fun fermentions!
« on: January 31, 2013, 07:57:34 AM »
That's gorgeous. Makes me want to give up the whole airlock thing and just ferment in a loosely covered bucket so I can see what's going on! (Sadly, still haven't used the carboy. I like my buckets for how easy they are to work with and because I don't relish the idea of lifting/carrying 50lbs of slippery glass.  But I would love to see more of the fermentation.)

Buy some BrewHaulers for your glass carboys. So much easier for one person AND they allow two people to share the load.

Or milk crates.  Which also work great for Better Bottles.

Equipment and Software / Re: What 10 gal fermenter?
« on: January 29, 2013, 04:04:31 PM »
I'd love to have a couple of those, but the cost of them now would be crazy if you can find them at all.

$300 on eBay.

That just seems like a lot.  For that much money, I'd rather get one of these:

I agree it seems like a lot.  I wasn't suggesting it's a bargain, just that they are available.

For my money, I'll ferment 10 gallons in two 6.5 gallon Better Bottles.

Equipment and Software / Re: Better Bottle Mold
« on: January 29, 2013, 04:00:07 PM »
Not sure what bleach will do to a better bottle.

I'd do a hot soak with a cleaner followed up by sanitizing with whatever you use to sanitize.

I've had some smelly stuff in my better bottles, but never got mold.  They're still working just fine for fermenting.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Free rise temp for Belgian strong?
« on: January 29, 2013, 11:04:24 AM »
you guys have had good success controlling temp on this strain?  IME it has not liked me controlling it. 
I pitch low-mid 60s and let it go as soon as I see activity.  Small beers done quickly, big beers rise to nearly 80.  Hmm, yet another experiment I need to make I guess.   ;D


Controlling at about 68 on my last two batches with this yeast led to LOOOONG fermentations to reach final gravity, along with some hand holding to get the yeast to finish.

These were huge beers (1.1 ish) pitched with slurry from previous fermentations.  Perhaps underpitched and I'm now thinking I need to use yeast nutrient.  I also know I under oxygenated the last batch as my tank ran out.

I don't have any kind of set up to heat up a fermenter or I would have done that to bring the last batch into the mid 70s to try and finish it off quicker.  As it is, I placed the fermenter near the heat vent.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Free rise temp for Belgian strong?
« on: January 29, 2013, 08:44:47 AM »
I don't like it that high for my tastes, but I've always thought of 70F as the fusel "breaking point", esp. if its already rising on its own.

Its easier to keep control than take control.

IME 70 us a conservative threshold for fusels.  Stick with what's comfortable for you, but I haven't wound up with any fusel bombs in beers that have risen to the low and maybe mid 70s.

Keep in mind that I am not recommending this as best practice, just suggesting that it's not a threshold to freak out about.  I freaked this summer when 10 gallons of wit hit 78, but the beer actually turned out pretty good and despite my searching for it, I did not get any fusel headaches.  Of course, the beer did not ferment at 78 for very long as I dropped the temp as soon as I caught it.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Hennepin Clone Yeast Question??
« on: January 29, 2013, 08:33:41 AM »
I've grown up a pitchable amount from Ommegang bottle dregs before.  It's actually pretty easy as the dregs seem to be more viable than some of the Belgian beers that have traveled further and been stored longer.

It's interesting to hear that they use spices to mimic different yeasts, as I did not get much character from their yeast.  I pitched it into a straight pils wort, so it was a pretty simple beer but not remarkable in any fashion.  It attenuated like mad.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Fine particulate matter in suspension
« on: January 25, 2013, 04:11:01 PM »
I've had good luck with plain ol' gelatin.  But I use it to drop yeast and not hop particles.

I have also found that time and cold clears a beer better than anything else.

If all else fails, you can just strain it through your teeth.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Liquid sub for Danstar Nottingham?
« on: January 25, 2013, 12:36:10 PM »
I don't know if Danstar has improved their quality control recently, but if I wanted to replicate the experiences I had with Notty I'd just take an English ale strain then skip my normal sanitation procedures. I've had fairly disappointing results with it when I've used it, with a sour note that has me concerned that there may be some contamination.

I think that's just the profile of the yeast.  I disliked the tart sourness so much that I stopped using it.

This is my recollection as well and another reason I would prefer not to use this yeast.

No disagreement here. 

Strangely, though, I've found that the old ale I brewed with it seems to just keep improving and is better than the one with the ESB yeast.  It may be that the strange sourness fits well for an old ale.  Certainly not for a bitter.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Liquid sub for Danstar Nottingham?
« on: January 25, 2013, 10:05:37 AM »
I find 1968 to be significantly different in flavor from Nottingham.  In side by side fermentations they produce significantly different beers.

I get much more bitterness from 1968 than I do from Nottingham.

So if the Nottingham flavor profile is what you're looking for, be aware that it will not be the same.

Equipment and Software / Re: What 10 gal fermenter?
« on: January 24, 2013, 02:44:40 PM »
I'd love to have a couple of those, but the cost of them now would be crazy if you can find them at all.

$300 on eBay.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Yeast nutrient
« on: January 24, 2013, 01:54:27 PM »
I recommend a complete nutrient like Wyeast Nutrient Blend for all your beers, but especially if the yeast is being repitched.

How and when would you add it?  In the starter?  Or to the wort?

I must have two or three bottles of nutrient that I've never used and recently bought a bottle figuring I should use it and not remembering that I have several already...

Thank you all very much. I use dry yeast as no LHBS carries liquid and it is too expensive to order on-line. Had I not read  "Brewing Classic Styles" and posted the dry yeast question, brew day would have involved destroying dry yeast on an expensive stirrer in an expensive flask.

Maybe the monitors can create a sticky not to make yeast starters from dry yeast.

You wouldn't be destroying it, exactly.  You would probably be pitching a sub-optimal starter and going through unnecessary trouble.

On the positive side, you can use that stir plate and flask to make starters from stored slurry after you harvest it from your fermenter.  Or grow up some yeast from a commercial bottle, which can be fun.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Corny converted to Sanke
« on: January 23, 2013, 08:19:41 AM »
It's aluminum?

That's what the listing says, but I bet they're wrong.  I am not bidding, so I will not find out.

Kegging and Bottling / Corny converted to Sanke
« on: January 22, 2013, 03:51:15 PM »
This is just about the strangest thing I've ever seen.

Someone who knows how to weld obviously put some effort in to this, but I can't figure out why.

Beer Recipes / Re: Hoppy Belgian Ale
« on: January 22, 2013, 03:46:00 PM »
Isn't the Unibroue strain available for bottle harvest out of the Unibroue beers? Or is there a reason why you couldn't bottle harvest back out of your bottles and keep some slurry in the fridge?

I have done this recently and it produced some nice beers.  I also have a smack pack of the Wyeast strain.

One of these days I'm going to do a side by side fermentation just for kicks.

Get another fridge.  ;)

Was just discussing that with my wife, although it would be a freezer so I can get the hops out of the kitchen.  Our wine cellar doesn't get cold enough to store hops, although this morning it was quite cold with the 0 degrees outside.

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