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Old 04-21-2012, 11:03 PM   #1
kevinmellett
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Default First Brew

Hi all!

I'm going to attempt my first 5 gallons tomorrow (a Heffeweissen). I have all the equipment I need but I have a couple of questions....

1. I have a container of C-Brite for sanitizing. Is it rinse or no rinse? I have read many conflicting accounts.

2. I have a bag of specialty grains that came with the kit (which was put together by the Home Brew Shop owner)....The instructions do not say whether to crack them or not....any ideas?

3. I would also like to add a touch of lemon....what is the best way to do this?

Thanks in advance!

Cheers, Kevin

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Old 04-21-2012, 11:13 PM   #2
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I'd toss the C-Brite and get some StarSan to sanitize with. StarSan IS a no-rinse sanitizer (it's a 'wet sanitizer' so while the surface is wet, it's protected).

The grains that came with the kit should already be crushed, unless you specified that you didn't want them crushed. This also depends on where you got the kit from, but most stores will ask if you need the grain crushed or not.

Not 100% sure about the lemon (not used any yet), but you could add some lemon peel/zest to it after fermentation has finished. You can get it from online vendors as well as local homebrew shops. You could also get pretty much the same flavors from dry hopping (select a hop with that flavor profile)...

There's a Modern Homebrew Emporium location not far from you (Weymouth) that should have both items. I'm not sure of the address, since I've not been there, but you can call to find out (781-340-2739)...

For more locals, there's a Boston Homebrew meetup group as well as Worts (or Boston Wort Processors HBC)... I'm in both.

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Old 04-21-2012, 11:16 PM   #3
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Hi Kevin. Congrats on your first batch!
1. C-Brite is a no-rinse sanitizer.
2. You'll want to crack open those grains. A rolling pin usually does the trick for me. Just remember, you want cracked grains not powdered.
3. Sorry, not sure about the lemon. Are you sure you want to lemon-up a heffe?
Hope this helped and good luck tomorrow!

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Old 04-21-2012, 11:24 PM   #4
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Thanks guys! I will visit Modern Homebrew Emporium in the morning! I have heard a lot of good things about StarSan, wish I researched a little more! I will double check those grains!

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Old 04-21-2012, 11:33 PM   #5
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Bring the grains with you and have them give them a look to see if they're already crushed. If they're not, ask if they would run them through the mill for you. Just be sure they know you're in there to purchase other supplies, and are completely new to this.

I met with the Randy (main person at MHE) not that long ago (shared some brews from what I had on tap, plus he sampled some of my mead). Nice guy and if he's there, I'm sure he'll help you out.

I will say that it is nice to have a HBS that's close to you, that's also got a good rep. The only one close to me (in Natick) is not even close to the same caliber. Plus, they over-charge on equipment by an insane amount ($110-120 for a $70 equipment starter kit).

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On Tap: Caramel Ale, Mocha Porter II, MO SMaSH IPA
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Fermenting
K1:
K2: Epic mead
K3: TripSix
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Old 04-22-2012, 12:20 AM   #6
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I've heard about people putting lemon zest in the secondary, much like dry hopping. Opinions?

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Old 04-22-2012, 12:59 AM   #7
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I'd save the lemon for the glass itself. Just my opinion but try the Hefe as it is first then you can tweak it to your liking the next time.

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Old 04-22-2012, 01:51 AM   #8
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I actually just brewed an American Wheat with lemon in it.

I would recommend zesting the lemon (micro zester worked well), if you don't have a zester, a cheese grater small side will work. Just be careful not to get the white - it will add that really bitter flavor you won't want.

I just added an ounce in the last 5 minutes of my boil and added the last ounce at flame out. I also used Citra and Sorachi Ace hops for that citrus lemon flavor.

Good luck!

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Old 04-22-2012, 02:02 AM   #9
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Wow. Thanks For the comments. Very helpful. I think I will try the Heffe on its own to start with.

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Old 04-22-2012, 02:13 AM   #10
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As far as the lemon goes, I just brewed up a Belgian Golden/Pale Ale and I added .75 oz. of lemon zest @ 15 min. during the hop boil. You could taste the bitterness of the lemon when I drank the beer green (only bottled for 1-2 weeks) but it went away after that time and the belgian-ness of the brew came threw.

I will update the recipe to flavor in the hop boil and dry-hop with Sorachi Ace hops - my LHBS tells me it adds a lemony flavor.

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