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Messages - brewsumore

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IPAs are the autotuned pop music of the brewing world.  Flashy.  Popular.  Uninspired and requiring very little talent to produce.

A big dose of hops can cover a multitude of sins. I still enjoy a balanced symphony of hop flavor. My brewing opinion is that any hop that has the potential for catty, garlic, not a good hop and should be eradicated from the hop fields.

Although some exceptions exist, but remembering the acceptable uses can be tricky.  For instance summit hops are great as a bittering hop, and when used this way they impart no onion/garlic flavor.
The thing about Summit is that the tangerine character is so great that the onion thing makes it like a giant tease. I just picked up some Summit hop shot in hopes that it will somehow not have that savory onion/asiago thing going on.

True that. 

IIRC, the general consensus, and from my own experience, when using actual hops (vs hopshot) don't use the summits less than 45 minutes in the boil, unless maybe at 1 or 0 minutes, and you might also be ok using them as a dry hop, and that if the onion/garlic appears from the late/dry additions that it should fade after 2 - 4 weeks in the keg.  Do I have that right?

I'm intrigued by the summit hopshot.  I'd love to hear what you learn, however you decide to use it.

Other opinions:

The craft brewing revolution will grow and develop, and style guidelines will grow and more styles will be introduced, to keep things "new" and as innovation occurs.  I see no problems with hybridizing styles, but trust the wisdom of brewing with the tried and true guidelines for individual BJCP Styles.

It's a waste of time to say one style is better than another.  Biologically we are born with different tastebuds and proclivities.  That said, I don't like heavy over-flavored sweet beers, especially the ones with a consistency barely distinguishable from molasses.

You simply cannot generalize across a broad scale to say such things as commercial beer is better than homebrew.  You can say that many homebrewers really should either increase their efforts or take up something else like fixing cars, or running a dogsled team.

You can make acceptable (i.e. very good) beer and still cut a few corners / choose the quickest, easiest practices.  Much of this pertains to all-grain brewing, which I hope we all agree is the most advanced method.  For instance:

1. For chlorinated water, to remove the chlorine use pot meta instead of filtering.
2. In a pinch, you can get away with "punishing the yeast" as Denny says, and pitch a bit lower than the brewer's pitch level SO LONG as you managed mash/kettle pH, minimized trub collection at run-off to fermenters, used nutrient, aerated well (best w/straight o2), and have and know how to use temperature controlled fermentation.
3. Dry hop the last week in your primary fermenter instead of keg hopping (either/or).
4.  Use anti-foam drops (Fermcap-S) to reduce yeast loss from blow-off, and while reducing the need for a big headspace in your fermenter.
5. If you prefer to brew less often, make larger batches.
6. Do a time vs. efficiency brain check given your available time that day before determining how fine to mill your grist.  More coarse grist = lower efficiency but faster sparge run-off.
7. For cheap n' easy brewing use the batch sparge method, blue coolers are just better, but be sure to get the better insulated ones (5- or 7-day).

Some of my other unpopular practices:

1. If you want to make high quality brew, then be sure to manipulate your mash/sparge water profile based on good research and careful weighed measurements.
2. Yes, check your mash and kettle pH, and just in case learn how to adjust pH up or down quickly and effectively before the mash proceeds in earnest.  To keep it simple check pH with ColorpHast strips estimated 3 points lower than shown, rather than using a pH meter, which half the time I wonder if mine has a working electrode.
3. I breakdown and wash and sanitize every keg that comes out of my kegerator before it gets re-filled with beer.  I buy PLC or PBW by the pail - it's a cost of doing business!
4. I keep spare kegging/kegerator parts and surplus equipment in my brew basement so they're there when I need them.  Also true for propane.  Plan ahead and be prepared.
5. If brewing with a novice on a given day at your place, be prepared to forget amiable conversation, and drinking, so you don't miss a step in your process and recipe.  This is especially true for me since I do minimum 10-gal brews and I hate it when I screw up unnecessarily.


IPAs are the autotuned pop music of the brewing world.  Flashy.  Popular.  Uninspired and requiring very little talent to produce.

A big dose of hops can cover a multitude of sins. I still enjoy a balanced symphony of hop flavor. My brewing opinion is that any hop that has the potential for catty, garlic, not a good hop and should be eradicated from the hop fields.

Although some exceptions exist, but remembering the acceptable uses can be tricky.  For instance summit hops are great as a bittering hop, and when used this way they impart no onion/garlic flavor.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What's Brewing this Weekend?
« on: January 01, 2017, 10:42:04 PM »
Yesterday was a tmavý ležák.

Interesting.  Very interesting.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: What's Brewing this Weekend? 01/18/2014
« on: November 25, 2016, 11:47:03 PM »
Yesterday I prepped grain and hops and fermenters, and today I brewed:

11 gal of kaffir lime leaf + galangal (Indian ginger) saison (WY 3711) at 1.054 OG, plus

11 gal of a Red IPA I put together based on what was on hand, including 11.5 oz of mostly wet centennial hops that had been vac-sealed and hard frozen (2 yrs old but looked and smelled fine).  In the interest of saving time during runoff I didn't crush hard and came in low with a 1.062 OG, but recipe as follows:


Recipe Specifics

Batch Size (Gal):        12.00    Wort Size (Gal):   11.00
Total Grain (Lbs):       30.00
Anticipated OG:          1.069    Plato:             16.72
Anticipated SRM:          12.1
Anticipated IBU:          67.8
Brewhouse Efficiency:   75 %
Wort Boil Time:           70    Minutes


   %     Amount     Name                          Origin        Potential SRM
 40.0    12.00 lbs. Marris Otter (2-row)          Great Britain  1.038      3
 33.3    10.00 lbs. Pale Malt(2-row)              America        1.036      2
 11.7     3.50 lbs. Sacchra 50                    America        1.034     50
  6.7     2.00 lbs. Flaked Soft White Wheat       America        1.034      2
  6.7     2.00 lbs. Wheat Malt                    America        1.038      2
  1.7     0.50 lbs. Carastan Malt                 Great Britian  1.035     34


   Amount     Name                              Form    Alpha  IBU  Boil Time
  1.75 oz.    Summit                            Whole   13.20  38.3  60 min.
 11.50 oz.    Centennial                        Whole    1.60  15.6  30 min.
  1.00 oz.    Calypso                           Pellet  13.39   4.1  3 min.
  1.00 oz.    Galaxy                            Pellet  13.30   4.0  3 min.
  1.00 oz.    Simcoe                            Pellet  11.90   3.6  3 min.
  1.00 oz.    Amarillo                          Pellet   7.00   2.1  1 min.
  2.00 oz.    Calypso                           Pellet  13.39   0.0  Dry Hop
  2.00 oz.    Simcoe                            Pellet  11.90   0.0  Dry Hop
  1.00 oz.    Centennial                        Pellet   8.90   0.0  Dry Hop
  1.00 oz.    Cascade                           Pellet   6.00   0.0  Dry Hop

Fermentis US-05 American Ale

A long 11-hour brew day, but everything is clean and put away.  Hey that still less than 3 hrs per 5-gal keg of beer!

Equipment and Software / Re: Oktober Can Seamer
« on: October 31, 2016, 09:04:35 AM »

Yeah, it's not for everyone, me especially.

Equipment and Software / Oktober Can Seamer
« on: October 30, 2016, 03:53:03 PM »

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: How long is your brew day?
« on: October 01, 2016, 04:41:15 PM »
I brew 11 gallons of wort for 10 gallons of beer, and my minimum time is 7 hrs including set up and put away.  I keep thinking I could cut down some time by getting a more efficient kettle than my keggle, but I like using my keggle, and my economical gas-sipping old propane burner with minimal BTU's.

It takes me typically up to 10 hrs with less conventional beers including due to extended mash and/or boil, hop stand, warm season water through my IC, etc.  However I did buy a pond pump to recirculate through a bucket of ice 1/2 way thru the chill.  Haven't tried it yet.

Once this year I doubled my output (2 different beers) in around 10 hrs. (IIRC), using 2 keggles and 2 burners, including an extended mash and boil for one beer.

Kegging and Bottling / Re: Are hoppy beers slow to carbonate?
« on: September 22, 2016, 08:41:30 PM »
In my experience the hypothesis is sometimes correct.  I very recently again experienced a very slow carb time for an IPA, in both kegs carbed at identical pressure and temp.

Equipment and Software / Re: Chest freezer rust prevention
« on: August 20, 2016, 08:15:54 PM »
In my 7.2 CF keezer I use two EVA-Dry 500's.  Used them for years and not even a sweat breaks out inside.  I recharge about once per month.  Still on the original two after 6 years and they continue to work great.


Just mashed in on an American Barleywine, it felt weird to use 15.5lbs of grain for a 3 gal batch.  I'm still on the fence on whether to try partigyle as all my previous attempts produced thin beers.  If anyone has any tips, I'm all ears.


A good approach is to make the BW with first runnings and have some DME on hand to adjust up the SG if a little low when it's time to boil the wort.

And then use the second runnings (sparge runoff) for a small beer such as a bitter, or at the very least collected and frozen for starter wort for future brews.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: 6 oz of hops
« on: July 31, 2016, 10:54:30 PM »
My last beer, a fruit forward IPA, other than the FWH and 60 min bittering additions, I added my only other (late addition) hops at 2 minutes and then let the hops sit for 7 or 8 minutes after flameout without additional cooling of the wort, and stirred a couple times in that timeframe.  The hops were in a suspended 5-gal paint strainer bag, so after the 8 minutes and just before chilling the wort I twirled the hop bag and squeezed it pretty well with tongs when removing it, and I like the samples I've tried of the finished beer, although the kegs aren't tapped yet -  tons of hop flavor + some managed bitterness but not at all jaw slacking.

It did save some time.  I had calculated 50 IBUs and tastes right in that ballpark.

OK - so I'm a nut case.  I find it inexplicable, but what a difference one day can make.  The beer tastes excellent today.  I must admit that I have had drastic flavor changes from green beer to not-so-green beer in the past when I've been disappointed at first and then ended up a happy camper about IPA's coming around.  Or maybe it's that my taste buds work better on weekends!  Live and learn is my current motto.

I am in a similar position with a hoppy pale leaning toward an IPA that has been in the keg for a week. I keg hopped it and it is very pungent and almost savory in a strange way. The aroma is great and it seems to be getting better over the past couple of days. I am hopeful mine will do the 180 that yours has done in a week or two. I keg hop regularly in smaller amounts and the turning point seems to be about 1-2 weeks.

Hmmm, some savory character?  Did you use summit under 45 minutes?  I've gotten onion/garlic from that.  It's very clean at 60 min.

Not 100% sure, but I think Lemon Drop came out first (I buy a lot of hops at YVH, too), ie., not the same hop. I could always be wrong though. Yeah, sounds like a killer IPA. Lemon Drop actually works great with Citra, too. Kind of rounds out the mango character of the Citra with its lemon and slight pine character.

Right on.  And I'm also glad I used columbus instead of chinook for the bittering hop, although I'm sure either would have been fine.  And I have been super pleased with YVH - my go to online source pretty much since they stepped up their line of hops - what was that, three years ago?

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