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Messages - hampshirebrewer

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Beer Recipes / Re: What is your best session beer recipe?
« on: January 24, 2013, 07:19:04 PM »
I like milds (hoppy and unhoppy) and bitters. For low gravity brewing I go with a no sparge method just bumping up the pale malt from the original fly sparge recipe to achieve my OG at reduced efficiency and draining my lauter bucket into the kettle and adding water before boiling to get my initial kettle volume. I found my bitters especially to be somewhat astringent with fly sparging.

Two recipes stand out from the past year include a hoppy mild based on an old memory of Grant's Celtic Ale at OG 1039 and 39 ibus with Willamettes and Cascades plus dry hops in the cask; and a version of How to Disappear Completely from the Brewing Network's BrewDog show at OG 1041 and 99 ibus (their recipe calculated out to nearly 200 ibus and I backed it off a bit).

And I bottled a Scottish 60/- with only 6 ibus today.

Wood/Casks / Re: Cask Bung / Shive Removal
« on: December 01, 2012, 01:39:03 AM »
I use a wooden shive and a plastic keystone. The wooden shive is easier to pound in for me. The plastic keystone seems less likely to split when driving the tap. I got my cask last spring and used it four times in 2012. Worked like a charm.

I carefully use a hammer and chisel to break up the shive by splitting it in the center. I use a soft aluminum bicycle tire iron as a fulcrum and pry the pieces out. Anything that goes into the cask flushes out during cleaning.

The keystone was more difficult. Finally I hit upon the way you remove a handle from an ax head - drilling smaller holes into the keystone to reduce the press fit pressure. Once I've drilled a dozen holes around the circumference of the keystone I can pry it out with the aluminum tire iron fulcrum and the chisel - wielding the drill and the chisel carefully to not damage the keg.

Hope this helps!

Beer Recipes / Re: Mc Chouffe clone recipe
« on: October 24, 2010, 05:20:11 PM »
I think the spice is bog myrtle. I've used it in strong Belgian ales with nutmeg. One gram of each would be a good starting point.

Beer Recipes / Re: Let's see some dunkel recipes
« on: January 25, 2010, 08:20:00 PM »
So many dunkel recipes, so little time.

I used 9 lb Weyermann Munich (the lighter one), 1 lb Weyermann Pils and 1/4 lb Carafa II.

I decocted 1 gallon of the mash after dough in at 95F with a 30-minute boil after a 15 minute rest at 155F.

I stove top mash and fly sparge.

There's got to be a way to use a decoction to add in to a batch sparge. Complicated but possibly worth it. Watching the decoction darken was entertaining.

Hopefully I'll have a dunkel that can compete with the Schwarzbiers this spring...

All Grain Brewing / Re: Flavor of Fat Tire/2 Below, Which Malt?
« on: January 25, 2010, 08:06:31 PM »
I get a rack of 2 Below sent east at Christmas annually from my brother in Arizona.

Love that stuff. Fat Tire is a nice beer at the ball park but 2 Below is worth seeking out.

I've always thought of it as an ESB with noble-y hops (Liberty or Sterling or both).

I like the clone recipe above, but this seems like a good time to use a darker crystal for the roasted notes, i.e. 2.25# 40L replaced by 1# 90L. But that seems a little dark to me. I'd venture 1/2# 90L, keep the victory and Munich malts and up the pale malt to get your target gravity.

I find Flat Tire to be darker than 2 Below, but I've never poured them next to each other for the comparison. Might be my imagination.

When I fly sparge I run it dry EXCEPT the cloudy, chunky final runnings don't make it into the brew kettle.

I calculate out the estimated final volume of runnings and make sure I leave at least a quart or two in my lauter tun.

So while I'm watching the kettle on the burner for the ever present threat of boilover, the remainders are draining to lighten the load to the compost pile.

My 6 gal bucket with false bottom system retains about .15 gallons per lb of grain. Less if I'm using a lot of flaked grains.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Winter Brewing Photos
« on: December 26, 2009, 02:40:06 AM »
I love the wind screen! Way better than the tin foil I use. Thanks for posting the picture!

Yeast and Fermentation / Re: Suggestions for 1450 Denny's Favorite
« on: December 13, 2009, 09:34:18 PM »
I am happy to report 1450 fermented a golden ale and I just bottled my version of Waldo Lake Amber (Cascades, FWH; Columbus Bittering; Amarillo Aroma) that fermented on the yeast cake - I can't wait for the bottles to condition!!

I look forward to using it year-round soon.

Ingredients / Re: Corriander
« on: December 13, 2009, 09:28:37 PM »
In the past year or so, there was some chatter about adding spice to the mash for its tannins to reduce staling reactions in the finished beer. The primary spice noted was cinnamon. Supposedly the spice flavor vaporized in the boil but the reactions help the beer. I seem to recall coriander was also considered but that it could still be detected after the boil.

So for a year I used coriander in my IPA mashes. I couldn't taste the spice and the beer was terrific. But, concerned that a beer judge could detect coriander in my IPA and bust me down to an overhopped Belgian Pale Ale, I dropped the coriander. The IPAs were still terrific. So I'm not sure if coriander helped. They never last long enough to worry about staling anyway.

So I may try mashing coriander again in a more delicately flavored beer like 80/- or a Belgian Blond where I like to taste coriander anyway.

Thank you for posting your experiment!

I've used an inch of licorice stick in belgian pales and saisons. Light licorice / anise flavor. I believe the sticks are derived from anise. I've used more stick in a few variations of Tumultuous Porter. I could see using an inch or two of stick in a dark witbier. And there is an ancient (70s) recipe for a stout by Dave Line that calls for an entire stick. I've never brewed that one though.

And I've used an inch or two of stick and a quarter ounce of root in an old porter recipe featuring brown malt.

I think the root is subtler and adds a sweetness that doesn't ferment out. I may have to try it in an oatmeal stout.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: AHA Membership
« on: December 09, 2009, 10:23:06 PM »
I've been a member for many years and appreciate both the magazine and the work of the organization.
I'm thankful Sam Adams Lager showed up just in time to blend with my first homebrew efforts.
After many years of extract brewing I found that all grain produced better beer for me. I stove-top mash and fly sparge but I'm thinking of moving into batch sparging.
Currently I've got Waldo Lake Amber (subbing Columbus for Magnum bittering hops), Ordinary Bitter and Elderberry Mead fermenting, and my first ever Kolsch on deck for the weekend.

I brewed up an ordinary bitter on Saturday. I need a session beer to take a break between all the holiday ales out there. Unfortunately the brew room temperature crashed Saturday night (55F) and the 1028 yeast went to sleep. I moved the carboy closer to the chimney and it's now bubbling away. Life is good.

I've used licorice stick in all grain belgian pale ales and saisons and in extract porters - definitely licorice flavor.

Chopped licorice root I've used in all grain old style porters with brown malt. More of a residual sweetness and a more subdued licorice flavor.

All Grain Brewing / Re: Flaked maize percentage for CAP
« on: November 19, 2009, 09:24:41 PM »
I find flaked maize leaves a little sweetness in my CAPs that help balance the more "rustic" hops. I generally use 10% corn with 6-row; after three months in the cold cellar it scored well but the judge couldn't tell if I'd used corn or rice. I haven't yet done the cereal mash with polenta but I'm ready to after doing one with flaked wheat this summer for a wit (more room for error when I'm throwing coriander and chamomile around).

Probably the corniest I've brewed was one that started at 1069 with 11 lb 6-row and 3 lb flaked maize (21%) with Clusters and Saaz. Maybe brew a big CAP?

Bottling a golden ale and brewing a strong amber to rack onto the yeast cake (1450). :) :)

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