Drinkers with a Running Problem

Home Brewers... (Read 1574 times)


Prince of Fatness

    Sounds like it will be OK if I choose to go that route.  I may experiment with some half batches in the kitchen some evenings, so if it gets late I may choose to let it sit and pitch yeast in the morning.  Thanks.

    Semi-retired.


    Prince of Fatness

      Bottled a rye saison this evening.  A lot of people add sugar to a saison to dry it out but I read that with the French Saison yeast that I am using it is not necessary.  They were right.  FG came to 1.000.  With an OG of 1.060 that comes to an ABV of 8%.  Yikes.

      Semi-retired.


      A Dance with Monkeys

        Help me understand how adding sugar dries it out.


        Prince of Fatness

          Help me understand how adding sugar dries it out.

           

          This is what I have read .... have not tried it.  Basically replacing some of the malt with a simple sugar.  Supposedly because the simple sugar will ferment out more completely this will make your FG lower .... drier beer.

           

          Either way it doesn't matter.  The yeast that I used worked as advertised.

          Semi-retired.


          Prince of Fatness

            I may experiment with some half batches in the kitchen some evenings

             

            Looks like I will be trying this out Friday evening.  I am going to use the brew in a bag method, with no sparge.  It sounds simple .... we'll see.

             

            I have found that I want to experiment quite a bit with ingredients, but 5 gallons is a lot of beer to experiment with.  2.5 will be better.  If this works I'll probably do the smaller batches more often and only do the larger ones for recipes that I like the most.

            Semi-retired.


            Prince of Fatness

              Heating strike water now.  This will be interesting.  I can't wait to get the house smelling like a brewery.

              Semi-retired.


              Prince of Fatness

                Mash went as planned.  Mashed out with no sparge.  Got my preboil volume right about where I wanted it.   Firing up the boil less than 2 hours in.  House smells damn good.

                Semi-retired.


                Prince of Fatness

                  Ice bath now.  Heh.

                  Semi-retired.


                  Prince of Fatness

                    Well now, just took a gravity reading.  1.058.  When I calculated this recipe for 70% efficiency it came up with 1.050, so I did pretty good.  Volume was very close to 2.5 gallons, so I got this nailed down pretty good.  All I need to do is pitch yeast, a little cleanup, and done.  Well under 5 hours.  Not bad.  I have some pictures and will post in the next couple of days.

                    Semi-retired.


                    A Dance with Monkeys


                    Prince of Fatness

                      Such the scientist Wink

                       

                      Heh.  And here's the thing.  You are right.  GDDMN it pains me to say that, but all grain is the way to go.  You just need to willing to do a small batch.  The more I think of it why when you are starting out do you need more than a case? I just did a 2.5 gallon batch in about 4 hours, and you don't need to be watching over it the whole time.  And do you know what I used?

                       

                      1 5 gallon pot bought on the cheap for starting with brewing, about $15

                      1 8 quart pot, owned by the Mrs.

                      2 buckets, free from the bakery.

                      1 grain bag bought at the LHBS.  I forget the cost but you could go to a paint store and get 5 gallon strainer bags for cheap.

                       

                      You do not need to sparge.  Just a mash out did for me.

                       

                      I have a crappy stove.  So crappy that I had to span two burners just to get a rolling boil with 3 gallons.  But I got it done.  I would not do bigger batches on my stove since I have the equipment to get i done efficiently in my garage.  The main reason to go to small batches was so that I could experiment more.  A case of beer is just about right.

                       

                      Anywho, Trent is right.  All grain is the bomb.  And it can be done on the very cheap, if you improvise.

                       

                      A couple of pictures to follow.  There you have it.

                      Semi-retired.


                      Prince of Fatness

                        Here is what I did ...

                        Prep Work

                        You need a 5 gallon pot , a smaller pot (I used 2 gallon), a grain bag (5 gallon paint strainer bags work and are cheap), a couple 5 gallon food grade gallon buckets (free at any bakery, ask for them).  Plus the standard stuff, thermometer, hydrometer, sanitizer, etc.

                        Buy one of those universal stoppers, drilled, and install in bucket lid.  Use a spade bit close to the smaller diameter of the stopper.  Clamp the lid to a 2 x 4 and drill into that.

                        You want to be able to do a rolling boil, and also need to know how much you boil off in an hour, so do a test run.  I boiled 3 gallons for a half hour with my set up.  This is when I found that my stove sucks.  No rolling boil.  My pot is big enough that it covered two burners, almost.  So I tried it that way and it worked.  I boiled off a quart, so times two that is 2 quarts an hour.  For grain absorption I went with a half a quart a pound.

                        So total water I need is 10 quarts (batch size) + 2.5 quarts (5 pounds of grain * .5) + 2 quarts (boil off) = 14.5 quarts.

                        The Mash

                        I mashed using 1.5 quarts per pound of grain, so for 5 pounds that is 7.5 quarts.  You're other 7 quarts go into the smaller pot for the mash out.  I heated the strike water to about 163 degrees to hit my mash temp (there are formulas for this).  Add the grain, stir real well.  No dough balls.  Check temperature.  Pop the lid on and throw it in the oven which is preheated on its lowest temp setting.  Turn the oven off.  This will keep the mash from losing heat.  Leave the pot in there for an hour.  Here is the pot in the oven.

                        Mash

                        The Mashout

                        During the mash heat the water in the other pot to 180 - 185 degrees.  Take the pot out of the oven and add the water.  Stir real well.  Let sit for 5 minutes.

                        I was going to mash with a bag in the pot but it was not wide enough to fit.  So instead I lined the bag in the bucket.  I scooped the mash into the bucket, eventually just pouring it in.

                        Mashout

                        Then I pulled the bag out and after it dripped for a bit I put it in another bucket that had a colander in it.

                        Straining

                        I poured the contents of the first bucket into the big pot and fired the burners up.  Then I squeezed out as much wort as possible from the bag, and poured that stuff into the pot as well.  I noticed that the whole thing was about 3 gallons.  Perfect.

                        The Boil

                        This isn't any different from when I do this in the garage.

                        Here is the hot break...

                        Hotbreak

                        Another shot of the boil, pot sitting on two burners...

                        Boil

                        Chilling

                        I boiled for an hour, adding the hops per the recipe.  Once the boil was done I put the pot in an ice bath in the sink.

                        Icebath

                        Once chilled I lined the bucket with the grain bag (both cleaned and sanitized) and poured the wort in there.  I pulled the bag out, which got most of the trub from the hops out.  After taking a gravity reading I pitched the yeast and sealed it up.  I did not pitch a starter ahead of time because since this is a half batch there are plenty of yeast cells to do the job.  It only took about 10-15 minutes to clean up afterward.  Taking my time this took well under 5 hours.  This was real, real easy to do.

                        I was pretty close to 2.5 gallons when finished, so my numbers worked.  I calculated my recipe for 70% efficiency, and the calculated gravity was 1.050.  I hit 1.058, so I did real well.  After a couple of batches I may up the efficiency a bit in the calculations.

                        Going forward I will probably do more of these smaller batches than the 5 gallon ones because it will allow me to experiment with different ingredients.  For example, this batch I did was a single malt and a single hop (Vienna and Northern Brewer).  Plus the whole house smells great when you brew indoors.  At least I thought so.  Mrs Finn, not so much.


                        Anyway there you have it.

                        Semi-retired.


                        A Dance with Monkeys

                          (Your pics appear to be in gmail.  You need to post them to an image hosting site such as photobucket if you want to show them.  We cannot see into your email.)


                          Prince of Fatness

                            (Your pics appear to be in gmail.  You need to post them to an image hosting site such as photobucket if you want to show them.  We cannot see into your email.)

                             

                            Meh.  Sorry about that.  Fixed.

                            Semi-retired.


                            Former runner

                              I managed to win a third place ribbon at the Indiana State Fair Brewers Cup last weekend with a Light Lager a friend and I brewed together. The funny thing is that it was a last minute addition to the brew day back on new years day. I just wish I had some left. Fortunately I have a batch of Munich Helles lagering right now.

                               

                              3rd place ribbon

                               

                              I stewarded at the Brewers Cup which can be a lot of work but well worth the effort since you get to sample a bunch beer while working. Plus they feed you between sessions. I worked the pro side of the competition Friday night and Saturday morning. Saturday afternoon it was homebrews. Once the comp is over the stewards get to take home all the left over beers. I scored a bunch of Upland, Rock Bottom and Crown Brewing beers in the one case and homebrews in the other.

                               

                              Free beer

                               

                              I ended up with my first brewing injury last month when I spilled some hot water on my shoe. It kind of sucks trying to drive home with 2nd degree burns on your big toe. (Yes I have pictures. No I won't be posting them.)

                               

                              Currently I'm aging a nice oatmeal & molasses stout in my basement. I modified that recipe from way back on page 7 of this thread. I used all UK base malt, Hallertaur and UK Goldings for a more British profile. I brewed about 6 gallons so I might experiment with a small amount and add some vanilla beans or chocolate in a gallon or two. I sampled a chocolate cherry stout at the state fair last week that would be fun to replicate.

                              Ross