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Messages - morticaixavier

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Beer Recipes / Re: American Black Ale Recipe (water profile?)
« on: September 30, 2013, 11:35:20 AM »
Well, you could skip the CaCl, and add the all but 50ppm calcium worth gypsum to the kettle to avoid issues with mash pH. The mash likes that much calcium for it's own purposes.

I have not had the James but this looks like a pretty bitter beer to me. A high sulfate level (300ppm +) will give you a crisp bitterness and perception of dryness that will emphasis some of those hops for you. If you could cold steep the dark grains or add them at the end of the mash to reduce burnt roastness (although I LIKE a little roastiness so I don't do this)

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Belle Saison Dry Yeast
« on: September 30, 2013, 11:26:44 AM »
2 weeks?  That is not ripping.  My typical ale ferments are done in less than a week. 

But with respect to the results above, my 1.069 batch did finish out in 2 weeks.  Maybe that is typical.

I see! that makes sense. It did take 2 weeks. After 1 week if was around 1.008 the second week (could have been less than a whole week) took it the rest of the way. I rarely package before week 3 or 4 so I just let it ride for a couple.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Racking
« on: September 30, 2013, 11:25:09 AM »
I have a spigot/valve on all my fermenters. I attach a tube and mesh bag and open the valve, done. Got rid of all my carboys, my first or second favorite brewing omission, not bottling being the other. Simple and efficient.

I have never been able to satisfactorily clean all the inside bits of those spigots either. on the rare occasions when I need to bottle a beer from a bucket (usually I prime the keg and just push the primed beer with co2 into bottles) I am always at least tempted to buy a brand new one.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: HLT or Mash Tun
« on: September 30, 2013, 11:23:04 AM »
GASP! Not HSA!!!!!!

Yeah, it CAN happen....personal experience.

cool! that may be the first I have heard. I have not noticed it but there could be other explanations for that. I only have one kettle large enough to heat the sparge water for a 11 gallon batch so when I sparge I run off first runnings into buckets and then pour them into the kettle to boil. But I guess that is pre-boil and the risks would be mitigated by the boil driving off o2.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Lagering Freezer
« on: September 30, 2013, 09:19:37 AM »
I just had a duh moment.  If it's going to be for lagering and cold crash, a used fridge will work instead of freezer and controller

sure will, you can also disable the fridge internal sensor and it should go down a bit below freezing.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Brew Dogs Premiere
« on: September 30, 2013, 09:18:50 AM »
The reality of brewing is as much as I like to do it it just isn't fun to watch someone brew beer.

... and then we wait two weeks... really guys, that's it... ahh come on turn off the cameras already... I'm outa here... Dude! I'm in the fing bathroom... THUD!!

Beer Recipes / Re: Golden Bock?
« on: September 30, 2013, 09:15:44 AM »
Yum, I miss the glissade.

I can imagine you snarking up the new seasonal...redipa.  :P

Let us know how you progress.  Cheers.

Flipside hasn't hit the shelves yet  >:(  I keep looking for it and hope to snag some soon.

You may be disappointed...I was.  Not a bad beer, but nothing special.  Kinda bland.

+1 pretty ordinary.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Racking
« on: September 30, 2013, 09:15:07 AM »
no carboy cap

Of course, you're using buckets aren't you?

Yeah, but I do exactly the same on the rare occasions I use carboys.

I'm with Denny on this. I had an autosyphon and I could see areas that I could not get really clean. Then it started to craze on me and I just gave it to my kid as a toy. I use a SS racking cane and fill the tubing with sanitizer to start the syphon. I run the sanitizer off into a different container although I suspect that's not really an issue with star san.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: HLT or Mash Tun
« on: September 30, 2013, 09:13:02 AM »
I brew in my kitchen on a gas stove, so rather than one large kettle, I use two smaller ones. Before I chill, I move my wort to my fermenter (Ale Pail), which is lined with a paint strainer bag. So I'm only moving something less than 3 gal at a time; not ideal but better than over 5 gal at a time. I figure that my cooling has to be a bit more efficient for not having to cool the thermal mass of the kettles and the hot trub.

OTOH, you risk HSA by xferring wort over 180F.

GASP! Not HSA!!!!!!

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Belle Saison Dry Yeast
« on: September 30, 2013, 07:51:57 AM »
At 1.069, I wish I had pitched 2 packets.  I don't think a single was enough.

Did it stall on you? it ripped through 1.048 in 2 weeks (< 1.002)

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Westvleteren Yeast
« on: September 29, 2013, 09:44:45 AM »
I've only done it a few times, but it has worked for me so far. I start by adding about an ounce of 1.020 wort to the dregs in the bottle. It usually takes a few days to see a small krausen form. By a week or so I step it up once more in the bottle by filling it about 1/2 to 2/3 full with my usual strength starter wort. From there I'll pitch it into a half gallon starter for the final step.

I don't bother decanting the step up starters since I want to get any yeast still in suspension as well. Saccharomyces strains get capped with foil and swirled frequently, while sours get a stopper and airlock to keep oxygen out.

I've heard others recommend using a very small amount of wort for the initial step (barely enough to cover the dregs), but by using a little more you can actually see and smell whether things are progressing as hoped.

Good info, thanks.  Do you think I went too big on the first step to 3/4 liter?

not sure about this particular beer but I have had good luck propagating from dregs starting with a 3/4 cup starter as the first step. Then I add another pint after a few days. I crash that and pitch it into a normal starter for a batch.

**Edit to Mention**
I actually just did this last night with a bottle of 'merican' saison.

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Belle Saison Dry Yeast
« on: September 29, 2013, 08:16:15 AM »
Are you pitching one or two 11 g packets for 5 gallons of wort?

I pitched a single packet. I can't imagine needing more than that unless the gravity is quite high. My packet had also travelled from Philly to Vermont, then back to california over the course of a week with no refrigeration.

I use a 8gal bucket or 6.5gal glass carboy for a primary fermentation and haven't needed to do a blow-off hose for a 5 gal batch. I do, however, prefer the 5gal glass carboy as a secondary fermentor because it has much less headspace so the beer doesn't oxidize. Though I'm under the impression very few people have oxidation problems.

mostly because we don't use a secondary. straight from primary to packaging (or bottling bucket) leads to much less worry about oxidation.

Zymurgy / Re: Pliny the Elder: Worth the 45 minute drive?
« on: September 27, 2013, 03:35:29 PM »
I would.  45 minutes is nothing.  People around here drive hours to The Alchemist (2 hours for me) to get a case of Heady Topper ( aka East Coast Pliny). 

I drive 45 minutes for my homebrew club meetings, dinner, and halfway home out of Boston on a Friday rush hour (when I used to work there).

Mort...there's only hype for the people who can't get it ;)...that and those damned beer rating sites!

I also would not drive from Bristol to Waterbury to get a heady topper. Maybe a case of it but not to go to a pub and have a glass. (disclaimer: I have not had a Heady Topper yet and if I find myself near the alchemist next trip back east I will try one.) I did drive right around 45 minutes to go to the Alchemist for dinner back when they were a pub. dinner (with fries and homemade ketchup) and a drink is worth the drive. Just a drink? not for me.
Get a few friends together and make a day of it.  I'd hope that there are other things to do in that area worth the drive.  Find something cool to do then use the excuse of "since I'm in town" and have a couple pints of Pliny!

+1 to this

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