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Old 11-18-2009, 06:43 AM   #1
beerlover_NZ
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I have just put my second brew into the fermenter and this time round I did things differently instead of trying to add the kit into the fermenter with 2 liters of boiling water and the 2lb of dextrose then stirring it all in I decided to try doing it all on the stove in my big stewing pot and found everything mixed better. Now to get my butt back on topic I used this recipe I found on the internet to see what it will come out like it is meant to be like an Irish Ale. the brew makes 21 liters

Added into the pot
water (heated of course)
1.7kg real ale kit (I used Lion breweries brand I am sure any will do)
1.0Kg Dextrose
300 grams golden syrup (diluted in hot water)
Only on stove long enough to get ingredients mixed up properly.
Reduced wort temp to 20C(recommended temp) by topping fermenter upto 21 liters with cold filtered water before adding yeast.

SG is 1051(actual hydrometer reading)
target FG is 1012 - 1009
estimated online brew calculator says that I should be getting an alcohol % of 6.8 once fermented and conditioned in the bottle.

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Old 11-18-2009, 07:03 AM   #2
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Alright what your talking about is very different than what allmost all brewers do. The ingedients are mixed in the boil and kept at a boil for about an hour. then you would cool the boiled wort and put it into the fermenter. with what I think your doing you would now add your specific amount of cool water. If you did a full 21 litre boil then just cool it, and put it into the fermenter. Go online and reasearch, and get into all grain if your serious about this hobby, because extract gets old very fast.

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Old 11-18-2009, 08:11 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Tmeister View Post
Alright what your talking about is very different than what allmost all brewers do. The ingedients are mixed in the boil and kept at a boil for about an hour. then you would cool the boiled wort and put it into the fermenter. with what I think your doing you would now add your specific amount of cool water. If you did a full 21 litre boil then just cool it, and put it into the fermenter. Go online and reasearch, and get into all grain if your serious about this hobby, because extract gets old very fast.
That is fine for you to say that I did after all ask for an opinion. Extracts are easier for me at present as I am still learning about brewing and do not feel ready to go for brewing with grain and hops etc. I want to get my confidence in brewing up by adding bits and pieces to an already hopped extract as a base until I can get set up properly to use grains etc. I only used the stove to mix the ingredients up to save me bending over at the fermenter barrel.
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Old 11-18-2009, 08:54 AM   #4
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There is nothing wrong with brewing with extract. Many wonderful and award winning beers are crafted using extracts. The process is more simple and requires substantially less time than all grain. The minor downsides are higher cost, and difficulty producing very light colored beers. Many all grain brewers return to the occaisional extract brew due to the 1 to 1-1/2 hours it can shave off of a brew day.

Now as to the procedure you used beerlover. I have a couple minor concerns. 1st, you need to keep your final mix of ingredients at a temperature where they will be sterilized for a good 10-15 minutes to kill any bacteria of wild yeasts. I think over 180 degrees is good, but boiling is better. Did you get the mixture up to a boil before you put it in the fermentor?

I do not see you mention any hop additions. Normally you would boil your hops for extended periods of time to get good utilization of the bittering acids. Generally 60 minutes for the primary bittering hops, and 15 to 30 minutes for flavor additions depending on the recipe. I'm guessing the hops are already pre-processed into your kit, so you are probably OK there.

Lastly I know that for all grain another function of the boil is to boil off volatile compounds such as DMS. I also know this is not necessary when using extract because they have already been boiled off when the extract was processed, however, you used the golden syrup, which I am not familiar with, or if this was part of your kit. I am not sure if the Golden syrup required an extended boil to get rid of volatile compounds. Hopefully someone with experience will chime in with a definitive answer.

Those concerns aside I can see the value in combining the ingredients on your stove to get better mixing. You just may want to fine tune to it a bit to nail the process down.

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Old 11-18-2009, 09:28 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Zen_Brew View Post
There is nothing wrong with brewing with extract. Many wonderful and award winning beers are crafted using extracts. The process is more simple and requires substantially less time than all grain. The minor downsides are higher cost, and difficulty producing very light colored beers. Many all grain brewers return to the occaisional extract brew due to the 1 to 1-1/2 hours it can shave off of a brew day.

Now as to the procedure you used beerlover. I have a couple minor concerns. 1st, you need to keep your final mix of ingredients at a temperature where they will be sterilized for a good 10-15 minutes to kill any bacteria of wild yeasts. I think over 180 degrees is good, but boiling is better. Did you get the mixture up to a boil before you put it in the fermentor?

I do not see you mention any hop additions. Normally you would boil your hops for extended periods of time to get good utilization of the bittering acids. Generally 60 minutes for the primary bittering hops, and 15 to 30 minutes for flavor additions depending on the recipe. I'm guessing the hops are already pre-processed into your kit, so you are probably OK there.

Lastly I know that for all grain another function of the boil is to boil off volatile compounds such as DMS. I also know this is not necessary when using extract because they have already been boiled off when the extract was processed, however, you used the golden syrup, which I am not familiar with, or if this was part of your kit. I am not sure if the Golden syrup required an extended boil to get rid of volatile compounds. Hopefully someone with experience will chime in with a definitive answer.

Those concerns aside I can see the value in combining the ingredients on your stove to get better mixing. You just may want to fine tune to it a bit to nail the process down.
yes you guessed right the kit already contains the hops so there was no need to add hops however I can get unhopped malt from the brew suppliers but have to travel 1 hour or more just to get it. Golden syrup is a pale treacle which is the by product of sugar processing http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_syrup. Also I did let the mix come to a boil for 10 minutes before shutting off the stove. on my first brew I did I mixed in the fermenter and the dextrose went all lumpy so I had spent alot of time getting rid of the lumps. now I allowed 20C as the temp to get the brew down to as that is what my hydrometer is calibrated to for the temp and I wanted the SG to be accurate. The brew is sitting at 22C since the ferment started 36 hours ago and each time I walk into the brewing room (which is also my guest accomodation) all I smell is the nice beer smell unlike my very first brew I made that stunk like a yeast farm which spat water out of the airlock. This brew is not doing that this time so it has a very steady ferment happening
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Old 11-18-2009, 10:15 AM   #6
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If I may make a suggestion: if you are interested in moving toward all grain brews, consider getting unhopped malt extract (there are many online, mail order suppliers -- I share your angst at not having a local homebrew shop). Then you can steep some specialty grains -- some of the crystal malts, roasted malts, etc. This gives you greater control over the flavor of your beer.

Some of those online suppliers offer kits that utilize this approach. It is a nice transition toward all-grain brewing.

In the meantime, if your beers taste good, keep doing what you are doing.

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Old 11-20-2009, 09:13 AM   #7
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Thought I would post a bit of an update it is now day three into the brewing of this batch did a hydrometer test and it was reading 1021 so it is fermenting rather happily at 20-21C couldn't resist the taste test of the sample (well it had to go somewhere apart from the sink) had a nice flavour sort of toffee like with a bit of bitterness following it. Can't wait to get this brew into the bottle for conditioning

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Old 11-20-2009, 09:29 AM   #8
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What you did is fine. I came from doin mrbeer batches and that is the basic procedure. Not sure if other hopped recipe kits have it but the mrbeer finished product had a twang taste to it. I moved from that to AHS partial mash kits and don't taste that anymore. Overall just enjoy it. Brew how you want to and if you want to give other methods of brewing a try go for it. Don't let anyone make you think extract is not as good as all grain. I'm actually thinking of picking up a partial mash and extract kit of the same style to see what kind of difference there is in taste.
I'm sure your beer will taste good. Oh as far as takin gravities, wait at least two weeks to take the first one. No reason to open your fermenter when fermentation is definitely not done yet. I know your probably excited so go qc test!

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Old 11-22-2009, 07:59 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eppo View Post
What you did is fine. I came from doin mrbeer batches and that is the basic procedure. Not sure if other hopped recipe kits have it but the mrbeer finished product had a twang taste to it. I moved from that to AHS partial mash kits and don't taste that anymore. Overall just enjoy it. Brew how you want to and if you want to give other methods of brewing a try go for it. Don't let anyone make you think extract is not as good as all grain. I'm actually thinking of picking up a partial mash and extract kit of the same style to see what kind of difference there is in taste.
I'm sure your beer will taste good. Oh as far as takin gravities, wait at least two weeks to take the first one. No reason to open your fermenter when fermentation is definitely not done yet. I know your probably excited so go qc test!
I guess with being a first time brewer and this is only my second batch of beer I like to check it's progress in which the novelty will soon wear off and I will start leavin things alone. I haven't been taking beer from the top as I have a tap on my fermenter so there is no need to remove the lid and airlock all I have to do is make sure no outside air is sucked in and that is easy to control.
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Old 11-30-2009, 08:32 AM   #10
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The beer got bottled four days ago after being in fermenter for 9 days (it measured 1012 over three consecutive days. Had a taste while bottling and it tasted great and has now cleared nicely. the beer is taking a bit longer than my first brew to carb up apart from the last bottle that was taken from fermenter as I got a bit of the trub from the fermenter in it (note to self not to tilt fermenter to get the last little bit into bottle). going to try one in three days (day number 7) to see how it tastes after the first week in the bottle and may even post a pic of it in the beer jug. if it tastes great i will brew another batch again but add more to it like lactose for extra creaminess or a bit of maltodextrin and get some safale yeast instead of yeast supplied in the kit but even better I feel it would be even better to go for unhopped extract and try to create it myself instead of using a hopped kit and adding extra bits to it.

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