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Old 11-20-2012, 10:48 PM   #11
mthelm85
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I just wanted to add something to this thread.....I tried my first Cascadian Dark Ale today, Deschutes Brewery's Hop In The Dark.....I was shocked....it tastes VERY similar to what I brewed.....I'm thinking maybe I just don't like this style?! I really love malty and hoppy is nice now and then but I'm thinking that mixing the two just doesn't work for my palate......

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Old 11-21-2012, 08:01 PM   #12
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Okay, ignore everything else I've posted so far. The beer is now bottled and fully carbed and tastes fantastic. Tastes much closer to Deschutes Jubelale than it does to a CDA....beer is a mysterious thing.....I've had beers that tasted great right out of the carboy and still tasted great after bottling, others that have tasted great out of the carboy and then not so good after bottling, and then this one that tasted horrible out of the carboy but fantastic after bottling........either way, this beer turned out absolutely fantastic and I will definitely brew it again so all of the worrying and belly-aching was for nothing! The crystal 120 and honey malt are really shining through and the malt/hop balance is just perfect

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Old 11-21-2012, 08:08 PM   #13
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Mmmmm....Galena. Need to order some more soon. I've been on a UK and Noble kick lately, so it's about time to find my way back to the bigger boys.

I just cracked one of my winter warmers the other night. Thinking I used a touch too much Special B since the raisin flavor is really forward, but it's not bad by any means. It's also only 2.5 weeks into the bottles, so like everything else beer related, time will tell all.

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Old 11-21-2012, 08:16 PM   #14
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I made a Winter Warmer ale last December hoping to enjoy in late February. It was a higher gravity beer and was harsh in Feb/March, better in June, coming into it's own in September and I expect them to be great this winter!

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Old 11-21-2012, 09:01 PM   #15
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People really taste the beer before carbed???????WHY?

Sometimes it tastes like crap, but are you really going to dump it at that point?

Unnecessary worry if you asked me.

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Old 11-21-2012, 09:56 PM   #16
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I'm happy it turned out but am confused how it was in the carboy on 11/17 and not yet at fg, but is now fully carbed and drinkable on 11/21. Did I misunderstand something here?

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Old 11-22-2012, 02:01 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Whattawort View Post
Mmmmm....Galena. Need to order some more soon. I've been on a UK and Noble kick lately, so it's about time to find my way back to the bigger boys.

I just cracked one of my winter warmers the other night. Thinking I used a touch too much Special B since the raisin flavor is really forward, but it's not bad by any means. It's also only 2.5 weeks into the bottles, so like everything else beer related, time will tell all.
Too much Special B? No such thing for me, I love that rasiny, figgy, dark fruity flavor in a dark beer.
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Old 11-22-2012, 02:13 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynik View Post
I'm happy it turned out but am confused how it was in the carboy on 11/17 and not yet at fg, but is now fully carbed and drinkable on 11/21. Did I misunderstand something here?
It was at FG on 11/16, I just didn't know it. I mashed @ 158 because I wanted plenty of body and residual sweetness to balance out all those IBU's. I checked gravity again on 11/18 and it hadn't moved so I went ahead and bottled. 2 days in my mini warm room and it's fully carbed and delicious. That's why I'm so amazed at this....just a few days ago I was bitching about ****ty beer and now I'm thrilled because what I brewed is pretty much amazing.

I don't do things the way most people recommend them on this site. I usually bottle after 7 days and my beer is usually fully carbed within 3 or 4 days and ready to drink. Yes, it ages and matures after that but I make a lot of malty beers (stouts, brown ales, scottish ales) and I really prefer them as fresh as possible. The conventional wisdom on here seems to be that that's the complete wrong way of doing things, the beer needs to be in the carboy for 2 or 3 weeks, then bottle conditioned for another 2 or 3 weeks but I've been brewing all grain for a little more than 2 years now and I brew, on average, probably 1.5 beers per month and I've found that I make better beer this way.

First, I ALWAYS make the proper size starter on a stir plate w/ yeast nutrient, and I control my fermentation temps w/ a Johnson A419 controller and chest freezer so my beers are usually completely fermented after 3 or 4 days. If I'm going for a more estery English style I will calculate my starter size using my brew spreadsheet so that I get as close to 0.75 million cells/ ML-P (and ferment a little warmer) but if I'm doing an American style I usually pitch 1.5 million cells/ML-P so that there isn't much of a growth stage (and ferment as cold as possible) and I get a really fast ferment. I also aerate w/ pure 02 on all my beers.

I think that bottling after just 7 days is better if you don't add fresh yeast because the yeast is still fresh so your beer carbs up a lot faster and the yeast are still active enough to absorb any O2 that might get into the beer during the bottling process. I think maybe they are also in better shape to clean up any fermentation biproducts that were produced during the carbing process. I don't have any real evidence to back this up other than my beers which are usually pretty damn good (I'm not 100% sure that yeast can still absorb O2 after they're done fermenting).

The only beers I do an extended secondary on are high ABV and Belgian Dubbels and Tripels and I always crash those at around 35 degrees for a few days and then add fresh yeast at bottling. Even with those though I usually only do 1 week primary and then 2 weeks in secondary (around 45 - 50 degrees) and then I bottle. When I first started brewing all grain I was using Northern Brewer kits and I followed their recommendations which were usually 1 - 3 weeks in primary, 2 - 3 in secondary and 2 -3 bottle conditioning. I did that for probably a year and I never added fresh yeast. My beers would take forever to carb and they just weren't as good as they are now.
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Old 11-22-2012, 11:33 PM   #19
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That is pretty interesting. Thanks for sharing the method. I have no luck with carbonation before a week or so in bottles so am jealous of you. Do you carb them low being malty beers?

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Old 11-23-2012, 12:29 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaynik View Post
That is pretty interesting. Thanks for sharing the method. I have no luck with carbonation before a week or so in bottles so am jealous of you. Do you carb them low being malty beers?
Just depends on the style....if I'm going for an authentic English style I'll carb lower but other than that I actually carb relatively high. When the yeast are still fresh and you put them in warmer temps they eat the sugar up very quickly.
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