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Old 10-20-2006, 03:30 PM   #1
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Default Note Taking

I'm just curious what kinds of things you guys record in your notes. I've noticed that a) my notes all look really similar since the process is the same every time and b) I've started to worry a lot less so I'm not paying as close attention to very last little thing my beer does once it's in the fermentor (for example, I have no idea when the bubbling slowed down on my latest batch).

I'm sort of hoping to reduce the amount of notes I'm taking and though some of you might have ideas about what info is critical and what I can leave out (obviously I'll keep recording things like gravity readings).

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Old 10-20-2006, 03:47 PM   #2
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I basically have the recipe, OG/FG and dates, and notes on anything that went not according to plan (ie something that might be to blame for off flavors or infection). I also take notes when I rack, bottle and sample, mostly these are just the SG, date and tasting notes. Then when I get nostalgic as the batch is almost gone, I note how it went and what I can change for next time (or if there should never be a next time for a particular recipe).

I used to keep more detailed notes on procedure, but like you said the procedure has become pretty standard.

Im about to make a jump to AG, so I imagine that my notes may get a bit more detailed... at least for a while.

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Old 10-20-2006, 05:56 PM   #3
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On my recipes, I have what the original recipe was,(because I'm almost always using someone else's recipe) then what my actual ingredients are, then my steps, then the date I added it to primary. If I use secondary, I put the date and SG on that. Then bottling date, and if it occurs to me, to add suggestions next time I make that recipe.

I've found it's very useful for my melomel batch that's been in the works since July.

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Old 10-20-2006, 06:26 PM   #4
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I usually record details like these for my brews. I also add any additional points of interest that may be helpul in the future success of brewing the beer again.

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Old 10-20-2006, 07:13 PM   #5
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Goes like this:

I put together a recipe in ProMash. Print it out, stick it on the "recipe shelf" above the counter, and follow as required.

Inevitably, with pretty much every batch, I won't follow the recipe exactly. Maybe my ProMash inventory didn't exactly line up with my actual inventory, or maybe I had a different idea on the fly, playing things by ear if you will.

Basically, on that ProMash recipe report sheet, I take notes of any variations from the printed recipe. I also take note of boil/mash/strike times, so that I know when to flame out, when to add hops/adjuncts, etc. However, I don't typically keep these notes.

Then, when the recipe is done and in the fermenter, and everything is wrapped up, I'll take the notes I made, enter them into ProMash---adding boil notes as required, and making recipe changes if there are any. Then I'll create a new 'Brew Session' for that recipe, make any notes I need to make regarding yeast, etc., then I'll finalize the inventory reduction.

Also, before I forget, I'll go into the "problems" note field, and make note of any problems I had, or any pleasant surprises for that matter, so that if something goes wrong, or delightfully right, I can go back later on and see if I can figure out what the culprit was.

Over time, I'll enter tasting & fermentation notes in the appropriate field, as well.

In other words, ProMash has drastically reduced the amount of notes I take, but at the same time, has increased the amount of information I retain.

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Old 10-20-2006, 08:31 PM   #6
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I'd say the same thign--- except I use beer smith to do the same thing. I keep the recipe on the carboy through fermentation. Then, when it goes to keg, I use a china marker to note any important details (ABV, date of brew, name/type of beer) on the side of the keg itself.

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Old 10-20-2006, 09:59 PM   #7
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Interesting comments. I am considering a software package for my brewing and have a thread asking for input.

I currently do things on hard copy on a standard recipe form I created. Nothing real new here. It has the basic things, OG target, FG target, BU, Color, Malt Ingredients, Hops, other additions (sodium bicarbonate, Brewers Salts, etc), yeast strain, mash details, fermentation details, etc. My notes while brewing are added as I go and when the beer is finished, I add final comments on flavor or changes I want to make the next time I make this particular beer. I also designate the particular brew recipe as #1, #2, #3, etc as I make adjustments. For example, my Ordinary British Bitter is on its #4 modification. These modifications can be anything from ingredients to mash changes

Dr Malt

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Old 10-21-2006, 03:19 PM   #8
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Most of our procedures would be the same for us.

One thing I add in my notes is sampling/tasting/gravity reading, comments, etc., as well as the date of the sample.

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Old 10-21-2006, 04:33 PM   #9
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I use this:


Brew Worksheet

I designed it so I have every detail of the brew session on one sheet of paper. I prepare it before brew day and then print it out and keep track during the brew session. It really helps me months later when someone asks some kind of detail on the brew. It is AG brewer heavy, but useful. I posted it a while back for everyone to use and modify as needed--if oyu do anything cool to it though, please let me know. I'm always up for improvements.

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Old 10-28-2006, 07:56 PM   #10
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Thanks! I'm doing my first two batches tomorrow. I will be using your sheet!

John

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Originally Posted by Dude
I use this:


Brew Worksheet

I designed it so I have every detail of the brew session on one sheet of paper. I prepare it before brew day and then print it out and keep track during the brew session. It really helps me months later when someone asks some kind of detail on the brew. It is AG brewer heavy, but useful. I posted it a while back for everyone to use and modify as needed--if oyu do anything cool to it though, please let me know. I'm always up for improvements.
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