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Messages - cfleisher

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General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Poured out that old Belgian
« on: July 31, 2011, 04:51:46 AM »
I agree with Gordon's suggestion about starting with lower temps than you'd expect. I just brewed a saison I thought was going to be perfect, but started it at close to 80 degrees (the temperature at which many people recommended) but I got some fusels. I think it would have been better to have started it lower (maybe 68-70 degrees) and let it warm up.

Also, I used to be way big into spices, but the best Belgians I've done have just been the result of careful attention to the yeast.

Other Fermentables / Why remove scum?
« on: July 25, 2011, 06:14:35 PM »
Just made my first mead and I was wondering why every recipe calls for removing scum? Is this for clarification? Sanitation? What is it, exactly, that I'm removing?

I agree with most of what's already been said. It's not any more complicated to brew than other beers, but requires additional equipment (and patience.) If you don't have a spare fridge, try doing an ale version with a clean fermenting yeast (US-05) and put the bucket in the coolest part of your home. It'll be tasty enough to enjoy.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Straining direct onto trub
« on: July 24, 2011, 05:26:33 PM »
Thanks guys. These are great suggestions. I think I'll just scoop out the trub and repitch it.

Yeast and Fermentation / Straining direct onto trub
« on: July 24, 2011, 05:38:43 AM »
Has anyone tried straining wort directly onto the trub from a prior batch? (Same fermenter, which contains the yeast from a just-bottled batch.) I'm about to bottle a Saison and am very happy with how the yeast has performed, so I plan on using it again. I was wondering if I would be OK to pour a second Saison (slightly different recipe) directly into the fermenter of the previous one -- no additional sanitation of the bucket, which would have been emptied for bottling just a few hours prior.

It'd make for a busy day, to be sure, but I thought that it might avoid risk of contamination if I cut back on the steps for saving the yeast.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What's Brewing This Weekend - 7/15
« on: July 18, 2011, 03:41:23 PM »
Got a Saison going that was inspired by your Saison Ete recipe, Drew. (I still go back to that May/June 2008 issue of Zymurgy all the time.) So far, so good.

General Homebrew Discussion / Plastic primary fermenter for Mead?
« on: July 18, 2011, 03:37:54 PM »
I've been thinking about making mead for a long time, and the latest issue of Zymurgy convinced me to go ahead and try it. I was wondering, however, whether I should use glass or plastic for my primary. I'm a bit worried about the mead getting oxidized if it sits in the fermenter too long (more than 6 months.) Does anyone have experience with this?

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: My First First Place (Brag Warning)
« on: June 09, 2011, 11:42:37 AM »
Well done. You give the rest of us something to aspire to.

General Homebrew Discussion / Spruce Tips
« on: June 06, 2011, 10:56:08 PM »
I was out yesterday picking spruce tips for a beer that Harpoon is planning to release this winter. I now want to try it on my own, and found a recipe in The Homebrewer's Garden that says to add 1-4 oz. for 60 min. That seems awfully long. I'd figure more like 15-20 min. would be plenty.

Does anybody have experience with spruce tips? I want enough flavor to come through a porter-like beer with molasses, but definitely would prefer to go light than over-do it. What are people's thoughts on quantity and length of time in the boil?


General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Wild Hops in Virginia?
« on: May 31, 2011, 11:56:13 PM »
Don't know about central VA, but I grew up in SW Virginia and would probably begin with Floyd. It's a place with a long tradition of fermented beverages.. of all kinds. I'm sure that somebody planted a few hop rhizomes back in the day.

General Homebrew Discussion / AHA National results from Northeast?
« on: May 20, 2011, 12:43:06 AM »
Anybody who submitted their beers to Saratoga Springs received their results yet? I'm not holding out much hope for advancing to the second round, but would love to get some feedback.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Dry Hop question
« on: May 14, 2011, 07:31:48 PM »
I tend to go with loose, and then when I'm transferring the beer to the bottling bucket, I'll put a nylon bag over the end of the siphon tubing to catch any hop debris. I don't think you'd lose that much flavor by dry hopping with the bag, but keep in mind that it's one more thing to introduce creepy crawlies, and could be a pain to get out of the carboy if you're using a lot of hops.

General Homebrew Discussion / AHA Nationals?
« on: May 07, 2011, 07:02:06 PM »
Anybody know when we should expect to hear about the AHA National competition results?

Beer Travel / Philadelphia beer trip
« on: April 11, 2011, 11:56:02 PM »
I'm going to Philadelphia for 4 days and am trying to plan beer bar/brewery stops. I've been told that The Foodery and Monks are must-sees. Any other suggestions?


General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Saaz and Cascade in an IPA?
« on: March 26, 2011, 03:52:20 PM »
@Oscarvan -- That's about what I was thinking, although I've actually got twice as many hops -- 8 oz. total, with 4 oz. of each variety. I was thinking maybe something like this:

2 oz. Cascade -- 60 min.
1 oz. Cascade -- 20 min.
.5 oz. Cascade -- 10 min.
1 oz. Saaz -- 5 min.
1 oz. Saaz -- 1 min.
2 oz. Saaz -- dry hop
.5 oz. Cascade -- dry hop

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