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Old 12-17-2006, 06:19 PM   #1
Cregar
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Default Extreme Brewing

Just bought "Extreme Brewing: An Enthusiast's Guide to Brewing Craft Beer at Home
by Sam Calagione".

Was wondering what everyone thought of it? I am enjoying it, looking forward to brewing some of the recipes in the book.

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Old 12-18-2006, 11:42 AM   #2
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I have not read it yet but I am prb going to pick it up after the holidays. There is some feeback on the book here:

http://forum.northernbrewer.com/view...hlight=extreme

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Old 12-18-2006, 09:58 PM   #3
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I saw the recipes he had in BYO a couple months ago, I didn't think to highly of some of the weird ingredients so I'm avoiding the book. Can you post some of the other recipes that aren't in the BYO?

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Old 12-21-2006, 04:34 PM   #4
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I bought the book at one of his recent beer dinners. Great book for beginner/extract brewers. I can't wait to try some of the recipes. I'm just waiting for Santa to bring me a bigger pot so I can do a full boil.

Some notes/observations:
Sam seems to be more laxed about procedure. For instance, specialty grains are steeped from burner on to a certain temp. There are no instructions like steep at 150 for 30min. Seemed kind of weird at first. Also no sparging, and hardly any talk of a secondary fermentation.
Gypsum goes in everything.
All are extract.
Tons of sugar used in addition to fruit in some, but this is part of what makes it Extreme and helps get ABV's up.

Definately worth the money, and it's great for me to support the local guy. My book is signed with "Keep drinking the good ****. Cheers, Sam Caglione".

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Old 12-21-2006, 04:35 PM   #5
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**** = another name for crap that rhymes with spit.

Dang censors!!

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Old 12-21-2006, 04:39 PM   #6
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Read this article for an interesting take on "extreme" brewing. This is Ray McNeill, a very well-respected guy from Brattleboro, VT, who was kind enough to stop by and offer guidance at our little get-together.

http://www.beerscribe.com/mcneill.html

The interesting quote, for those who hate clicking, is:

Quote:
During our wide-ranging, several hour conversation, we switched gears frequently to discuss a variety of topics. At one point, McNeill offered his views on the so-called 'extreme beer movement'.

"I think it's a bunch of hokey crap, by and large," he says. "With the exception of Dogfish Head, because I think that Sam (Calagione) really thinks that getting that spoiled grape juice out of the refrigerator and throwing it into a beer is a good idea. He is out there but he is genuine about it. I think that most of the other ones are just trying to make money through marketing hooey. They come up with the bizarre beers in an effort to appeal to a certain member of the public who thinks that a 21-percent (alcohol by volume) beer has got to be great. In fact, most of it sucks. So that's what I feel about the 'let's pour some maple syrup and raisins and some pineapple juice in our beer, we'll add two or three more yeast strains and store it in a Jack Daniel's barrel and then we'll put it in a cutesy little blue bottle and sell it for twenty dollars each and try and get press all around the world with it.' It's just hooey. It's PT Barnum crap. My opinion has always been, 'if you're a really good violinist, you play the violin. If you suck, you get an electric violin, and a fuzz box, and a wah-wah pedal and then no one has to know that you really suck.' For the record, and you can print this if you want, if you believe that Sam adds hops every minute for 90 minutes in his 90 Minute IPA, then I've got some beachfront property in Colorado you might be interested in. That's marketing hooey. I've only met Sam once, and I really like his beers, but that's just ridiculous."
Sorry to those of you who already saw me post this once...
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Old 12-21-2006, 06:41 PM   #7
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I have had this discussion with coworkers before. My personal taste leans toward traditional styles, and will stretch the envelope with what I believe are tasteful additions but that's about it. Do I despise additions? No. Hey anything done properly can be tasty. But you gotta wonder about some of the stuff out there. Hey if that's your thing, it's cool...but for me there are some things better left alone. It reminds me of the interview on basicbrewing with Papazian. He was talking about your beers that are like your 'old friends'. They are simple, reliable and you keep making them. It is those really interesting beers that stand out though. Would you wanna drink them every day, probably not (most folks anyhow). But (and this is the big but) it still needs to be a quality beer. You can throw lots of off-the-wall stuff together and people will be drawn to it because of novelty, but that doesn't mean it is necessarily a good beer.

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Old 12-21-2006, 07:05 PM   #8
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Back to the book - I haven't read the whole thing yet, but it's a fun read. It's more about the love and being creative then the technique for the most part. I'd recommend it. You probably won't go back to it over and over like Palmer's book, but it's not really the same kind of thing.

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Old 12-21-2006, 07:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cregar
Just bought "Extreme Brewing: An Enthusiast's Guide to Brewing Craft Beer at Home
by Sam Calagione".

Was wondering what everyone thought of it? I am enjoying it, looking forward to brewing some of the recipes in the book.

Extreme Brewing, is that like when you brew in a shopping cart rolling down the side of a huge hill with a bunch of wild boars at the bottom?
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Old 12-23-2006, 02:58 PM   #10
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I brewed the peppercorn rye bock - it is fermenting now - a few more weeks!!!

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