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Old 07-07-2012, 07:03 PM   #1
JAYMACK58
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Default wanting to get away from kits

I want to start getting away from kits and possibly start making my own recipes any suggestions where to start

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Old 07-07-2012, 07:08 PM   #2
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Designing Great Beers by Ray Daniels for ingredients and BeerSmith for amounts and record keeping. Go BIAB - AG.

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Old 07-07-2012, 07:32 PM   #3
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+1 on beersmith and designing great beers. Could have sworn I commented on this exact same thread earlier...

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Old 07-07-2012, 07:38 PM   #4
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Beersmith is the best $20 I have spent on my brewing hobby.

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Old 07-07-2012, 10:06 PM   #5
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I agree with Designing Great Beers, and I use Beer Alchemy on the mac, not Beersmith. If you are into Belgians, Brew Like a Monk can be a source of recipe inspiration as well.

This works well for brewing more traditional styles. You can also take a recipe (from a book, from here, where ever), and tweak one thing, see how it works out. I've made a few recipes by taking the malt bill from one and the hop schedule from another, or subbing out one specialty malt for another.

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Old 07-07-2012, 10:51 PM   #6
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Brewing classic styles has a lot of great recipes that I use as a starting point for a number of my brews.

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Old 07-07-2012, 10:57 PM   #7
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I started trying recipes I found on the internet. I also like Hopville, it allows you to tinker with your ingredients, and get some feedback on strength and balance. No need to reinvent the wheel. Just like your kit selection, decide what type of beer you would like to have five gallons of, find a recipe, and get the ingredients.

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Old 07-08-2012, 12:45 AM   #8
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When I started to get away from kits I decided that I wanted to learn about flavors of grains, first. I started with a basic 3 lbs light DME, 4 lbs 2row and added 13 oz of some random specialty grain. Use whatever hops you want to a low(ish) IBU (BeerSmith is great for calculating this) and add a packet of US05. It's great to use this technique to get familiar with ingredients as well as whatever recipe tool you use.

And I really shouldn't talk like this is something I did years ago. I've only done 5 batches (two kits and the rest with the above formulation) but I'm amazed at the sheer flavor that comes from such a simple recipe formulation.

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Old 07-08-2012, 01:46 PM   #9
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For me it was taking recipes comparing them and making adjustments. What is it that makes black douglass so different then guiness? The Grain difference between an IPA and IIPA and how to i have to adjust hops to maintain the same IBUs and flavor profile? Using different recipes you will end up purchasing different grain/hops and you can start to understand the flavors. If you save spice jars you can put a small amount of grain or hops into them and store them for reference later. It gives me something to touch taste and feel instead of words in a book. I love beer.

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