Author Topic: First time Homebrewer  (Read 4696 times)

Offline davidgzach

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #15 on: March 13, 2013, 06:05:20 AM »
Everything above except the not rehydrating yeast comment.  Sorry Keith!   ;)  Love this debate....

I would also go on YouTube and check out a few brewing videos.

Most of all, enjoy the process.  It's supposed to be fun!

Dave
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Offline fmader

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #16 on: March 13, 2013, 07:28:54 AM »
#5 - Don't overcarbonate - your kit probably came with 5oz of corn sugar for bottle priming. This is usually a bit much for most beers if you use the whole thing. Use an online calculator and measure out the correct amount for the carbonation level you want. Dissolve it in some boiling water and mix it into the beer in your bottling bucket with a sanitized spoon. If it is not mixed in evenly you will have some flat bottles and some overcarbonated bottles. Here is a good calculator I use: http://www.brewersfriend.com/beer-priming-calculator/

+1

This is great advice that usually isn't given upfront. I learned this the hard way when I started. I thought the more priming sugar, the merrier. Where in fact, 5 oz of priming sugar can result in a sweet science project volcano of beer. I now use the minimum suggested volume of carbonation when calculating the amount of priming sugar to use. This was suggested to me on this forum. It hasn't failed yet. Usually for an American ale, I use around 3-3.5 oz of priming sugar per five gallon batch, depending on the temperature of beer.

Keep things clean, keep good notes, and remember, your beer will only get better. If you are anything like me, you'll be your biggest critic. It's beer... It's gotta be good... It's beer that you created... That is awesome beer!

Welcome to a wonderful hobby and happy brewing!
Frank

Offline yso191

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #17 on: March 13, 2013, 08:27:40 AM »
Everyone has given great advice.  I'd just add one thing: look up your local homebrew club and see if someone can hang out with you while you brew, or see if you can watch one of them brew.  They'll be able to answer a ton of questions and help you get organized, avoid issues, etc.
Steve

Offline chadjjones89

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #18 on: March 13, 2013, 09:11:44 AM »
This is all really great stuff, thank you so much! I'm picking up The Complete Joy of Homebrewing (3rd ed.) as well as The Homebrewer's Companion.


I've also started a blog to help me keep track of my experiences so I when I inevitably have some mistakes, I'll bring the issues here.

Again, thank you so much for being so helpful and friendly, it's good to know I've got a group of people to lean on for advice while I'm getting started with all this.
"Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy"

-Benjamin Franklin-

Offline majorvices

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #19 on: March 13, 2013, 09:26:59 AM »
Everything above except the not rehydrating yeast comment.  Sorry Keith!   ;)  Love this debate....

I would also go on YouTube and check out a few brewing videos.

Most of all, enjoy the process.  It's supposed to be fun!

Dave

It's fine. But try it side by side and see if you notice a difference on a beer under 1.065 - hint: you cant! ;) One of the benefits of doing 12 gallon batches in 2 different carboys was all the side by side experiments I was able to do (still do occasionally) and tried this particular one many, many times. Sometimes the rehydrated took off a little faster but I never noticed a flavor difference so had to ask myself .... what's the point? Currently occasionally use US-05 on higher gravity IIPAs and I do rehydrate for that but realistically all you have to do is pitch an extra packet to be safe.
Keith Y.
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Offline euge

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #20 on: March 13, 2013, 09:35:53 AM »
Don't drink while you are brewing. And stick to your plan. I usually wait until the beer is chilling to pour myself a cold one.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline bluesman

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #21 on: March 13, 2013, 09:36:03 AM »
Some of the best advice I've seen is in this thread. Obviously, there's a lot to learn, and experience can be biggest resource/asset. Take your time and don't hesitate to ask us for advice/recommendations. How to Brew is a great book. Keep everything that the beer touches AFTER boiling clean/sanitized and ferment at 64-68F.

Most important of all...have fun with it. :)

Welcome to forum and the hobby!
Ron Price

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #22 on: March 13, 2013, 12:42:35 PM »
Everything above except the not rehydrating yeast comment.  Sorry Keith!   ;)  Love this debate....

I would also go on YouTube and check out a few brewing videos.

Most of all, enjoy the process.  It's supposed to be fun!

Dave

It's fine. But try it side by side and see if you notice a difference on a beer under 1.065 - hint: you cant! ;) One of the benefits of doing 12 gallon batches in 2 different carboys was all the side by side experiments I was able to do (still do occasionally) and tried this particular one many, many times. Sometimes the rehydrated took off a little faster but I never noticed a flavor difference so had to ask myself .... what's the point? Currently occasionally use US-05 on higher gravity IIPAs and I do rehydrate for that but realistically all you have to do is pitch an extra packet to be safe.
I have done the same, sometimes you can tell, sometimes you can't.  But I think it is important that people learn best practices, they can deviate from them later when they think they know what they're doing. ;)
Tom Schmidlin

Offline denny

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #23 on: March 13, 2013, 12:48:44 PM »
I agree, Tom.  My theory has always been "Learn the rules so you can decide which ones you can break!".
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline fmader

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #24 on: March 13, 2013, 12:49:47 PM »
Don't drink while you are brewing. And stick to your plan. I usually wait until the beer is chilling to pour myself a cold one.

I completely disagree with this bit of advice, but aside from driving, there's not much I don't do with a solid beer in hand. My brew day usually starts with an omelet and a Breakfast Stout  :P

A book that I found most beneficial, especially transitioning to all grain and creating my own recipes was Designing Great Beers by Daniels.
Frank

Offline denny

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #25 on: March 13, 2013, 01:25:25 PM »
Don't drink while you are brewing. And stick to your plan. I usually wait until the beer is chilling to pour myself a cold one.

I completely disagree with this bit of advice, but aside from driving, there's not much I don't do with a solid beer in hand. My brew day usually starts with an omelet and a Breakfast Stout  :P

A book that I found most beneficial, especially transitioning to all grain and creating my own recipes was Designing Great Beers by Daniels.

To each their own.  I found many years ago that I make fewer mistakes and the cleanup is easier if I don't drink when I brew.  But I almost always start by 9 AM and finish by 2, so there's plenty of time for beer afterwards.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

Offline Slowbrew

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #26 on: March 13, 2013, 02:25:57 PM »
Don't drink while you are brewing. And stick to your plan. I usually wait until the beer is chilling to pour myself a cold one.

I completely disagree with this bit of advice, but aside from driving, there's not much I don't do with a solid beer in hand. My brew day usually starts with an omelet and a Breakfast Stout  :P

A book that I found most beneficial, especially transitioning to all grain and creating my own recipes was Designing Great Beers by Daniels.

To each their own.  I found many years ago that I make fewer mistakes and the cleanup is easier if I don't drink when I brew.  But I almost always start by 9 AM and finish by 2, so there's plenty of time for beer afterwards.

Same for me Denny.  Besides that, my wife gets a bit upset if I start drinking at 5:30 in the morning.   ;)

Paul
Where the heck are we going?  And what's with this hand basket?

Offline fugglupagus

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Re: First time Homebrewer
« Reply #27 on: March 13, 2013, 03:18:47 PM »
Read lots.  Helps make you smarterer.

Drink beer, try hard to taste it.  Even if it’s not yours, it’s still research for future recipes and how to make your current one better.

Let the significant other know that at some point there will be an “incident” involving a mess on the stove, in the pantry, in the fireplace, on the ceiling, etc.  Also let her (or him) know that her (or his) nylon stockings may be repurposed for dry hopping and your family soup pot may soon be called “mash tun” or “hot liquor tank”.  You may also want to start drafting your explanation as to why you really do need three (or more) refrigerators, a wondrous thingy called a “keezer” in a prominent location in your living quarters, a Barbie doll tap handle, and why you absolutely have to brew three weekends in a row so you can have enuf beer ready for Groundhog’s Day even tho it’s six months away.
Keezer:  It's a big box that dispenses beer. No matter how well or sh$%&y it's built, it will be beautiful.

Offline majorvices

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First time Homebrewer
« Reply #28 on: March 13, 2013, 06:05:37 PM »
Everything above except the not rehydrating yeast comment.  Sorry Keith!   ;)  Love this debate....

I would also go on YouTube and check out a few brewing videos.

Most of all, enjoy the process.  It's supposed to be fun!

Dave

It's fine. But try it side by side and see if you notice a difference on a beer under 1.065 - hint: you cant! ;) One of the benefits of doing 12 gallon batches in 2 different carboys was all the side by side experiments I was able to do (still do occasionally) and tried this particular one many, many times. Sometimes the rehydrated took off a little faster but I never noticed a flavor difference so had to ask myself .... what's the point? Currently occasionally use US-05 on higher gravity IIPAs and I do rehydrate for that but realistically all you have to do is pitch an extra packet to be safe.
I have done the same, sometimes you can tell, sometimes you can't.  But I think it is important that people learn best practices, they can deviate from them later when they think they know what they're doing. ;)

Except its not really a "rule". On a brick of us05 it specifically says "rehydrate or alternatively sprinkle slowly onto wort".

Is it best to rehydrate, theoretically yes. But will a new brewer who is just getting the hang of brewing and sanitation probably be better off just pitching the dry yeast and not worrying about rehydrating? IMO yes. Too many new brewers have also made the mistake of rehydrating top warm and killing the yeast.
Keith Y.
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Offline denny

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First time Homebrewer
« Reply #29 on: March 13, 2013, 06:07:21 PM »
Dan Listermann mentioned 15 years ago that he had advised his customers to not rehydrate.  He found that too many new brewers were using too high a temp and killing the yeast.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe