Author Topic: PicoBrew Zymatic?  (Read 2482 times)

Online hopfenundmalz

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Re: PicoBrew Zymatic?
« Reply #15 on: March 24, 2014, 11:20:34 AM »
http://www.digitaltrends.com/features/picobrews-zymatic-brews-beer-mouse-click-purists-pissed/#!Basel

New article about the picobrew. It notes that Annie Johnson has been hired on.

Annie was on the Brewing Network's Session a couple weeks ago (3/10/14)...a great interview.  http://thebrewingnetwork.com/shows/1068

People are going to whine about this, but there are those out there with brew sculptures that are almost doing the same thing.  Load water, grains, press some buttons and beer.  I find this to be a great system for those in cold weather climates that don't want to brew outside when it's minus 4000F.  A bit pricey for me, but I see no problem with it.

Here it was only minus 400F, we put on long underwear and fleece lined pants.  8)
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Offline dixonmike20

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Re: PicoBrew Zymatic?
« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2014, 12:29:06 PM »
Annie,

I have a few questions. I've been using pots, a cooler and burners for years, but I'm on the verge of building a system. So, this has my interest.

Where does the boil vent?

How does the wort cool? What temp does it typically cool to?

Other than the drawer, how do you clean the lines? Do you run cleaner and sanitizer through it?

Am I correct that it only does 2.5 gal batches? Are there plans for larger batches?

Thanks




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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: PicoBrew Zymatic?
« Reply #17 on: April 02, 2014, 06:42:34 AM »
It's an interesting device and I see where it has its role for people who care more about the recipe creation and final product over the actual brewing process. Personally, I like having a greater level of flexibility than what the product offers so it wouldn't be a good fit for me.

Is this the product that doesn't reach an actual boil? That's the only thing I am suspicious about.
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Offline Steve in TX

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Re: PicoBrew Zymatic?
« Reply #18 on: April 02, 2014, 06:54:50 AM »

Is this the product that doesn't reach an actual boil? That's the only thing I am suspicious about.

I think so. IIRC, it circulates the wort over the hearing element back and forth from device to kettle.
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Online HoosierBrew

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Re: PicoBrew Zymatic?
« Reply #19 on: April 02, 2014, 07:15:15 AM »
It's an interesting device and I see where it has its role for people who care more about the recipe creation and final product over the actual brewing process. Personally, I like having a greater level of flexibility than what the product offers so it wouldn't be a good fit for me.

Is this the product that doesn't reach an actual boil? That's the only thing I am suspicious about.

+1.  Not for me. Getting my hands on the process is kind of the whole point for me.
Jon H.

Offline dixonmike20

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Re: PicoBrew Zymatic?
« Reply #20 on: April 02, 2014, 07:44:01 AM »

It's an interesting device and I see where it has its role for people who care more about the recipe creation and final product over the actual brewing process. Personally, I like having a greater level of flexibility than what the product offers so it wouldn't be a good fit for me.

Is this the product that doesn't reach an actual boil? That's the only thing I am suspicious about.

+1.  Not for me. Getting my hands on the process is kind of the whole point for me.

Like many who start to automate with controllers and RIMS/HERMS, I'm looking to have a repeatable process. With this in place, I can concentrate on recipe dial in and fermentation control.

Also, as I'm getting tired of lifting kettles and the cleaning required. So, I'm searching for something to fit these requirements and there are a few options I'm considering.

I'm trying to weigh each option objectively and not dismiss the Zymatic outright.

As far as the Zymatic, I have limited info so far.
Based on what I can find online, here are the pros and cons for me:

Pros:
Repeatable process
Ease of use, less lifting
Control mash temps and stages
Ease of cleaning
Considering the automation, price isn't that bad. I've done the pricing on several other systems DIY and pre built. This isn't really out of the park.
Space saver

Cons:

I don't know where the boil takes place and how well it vents.

I don't know if 208F really is sufficient

I don't know how one would thoroughly clean and sanitize the system ( other than the drawer ).

I'm not sure on batch size and the top gravity I could reach.


If anyone has these answers, please share them. I would really like to get Annie's input as she has used it.



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Offline dixonmike20

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Re: PicoBrew Zymatic?
« Reply #21 on: April 04, 2014, 05:51:33 AM »
Ok, I was able to dig through the forums a little more and find some of the answers.

The possible DMS (no boil and not cooling wort) are the two biggest issues I see.

I guess I'll have to reserve judgement until we get some independent reviews on the quality of the beer.
I appreciate the ingenuity, so I don't want to just piss all over it. But, it's probably not for me.


For the price, I feel a better fit for me would be a EBIAB. Based my pricing of parts, building or buying a EBIAB would he cheaper, allow a full boil, and incorporate my plate chiller. 

For about the same price as the Zymatic, I could add a vessel, use my current cooler and kettle and have a three vessel system with mash control. If I didn't want to reduce my clean up time, I would probably go that route.

Starting from scratch might be different. Really, it comes down to what the individual wants. I won't be one to look down on brewers using the Zymatic.



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