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Old 11-29-2011, 04:26 PM   #111
d50erock
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Jun 2011
fitchburg, mass
Posts: 5

I just brewed this lst tuesday. It was also my 1st AG brew. Stupid easy really. After the addition of the honey my Gravity reading was 1.082. Signs of fermenting started 2 days later. Looks to be slowing down a lot, so I plan to check the gravity tonight, and then again in a few days. Since so many have made this, would it be ready to drink in early Jan? I plan on kegging 3 gallons or so and bottling the rest.
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Old 11-30-2011, 03:17 PM   #112
petercarrjones
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Oct 2010
Washington, DC
Posts: 23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by d50erock View Post
Would it be ready to drink in early Jan? I plan on kegging 3 gallons or so and bottling the rest.
Due to the high gravity and spices, it definitely gets better with age. It's still darn good after only a month or so of conditioning, so I think your keg should be tasty by early Jan. The bottles will keep getting better/smoother.

 
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Old 11-30-2011, 03:21 PM   #113
petercarrjones
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Oct 2010
Washington, DC
Posts: 23
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Just bottled last night. Had a little more volume of beer and felt the spicing wasn't quite up to where we wanted it from last year. Our spice tea:

1.5 tbl ginger powder
2 cinnamon sticks
2 vanilla beans- split
2 tbl orange peel
1 tsp all spice
3/4 cup priming sugar

Brought to boil, steeped for 15 mins, strained.

 
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Old 12-01-2011, 03:19 AM   #114
blackbird
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May 2010
Lubbock, Tx
Posts: 17

Ok, I just made the tea and I'm a little worried. First, it doesn't smell like Christmas to me. I can definitely smell the vanilla but very little cinnamon. Also, I get a faint armpit like vinegar smell. Is this from the bitter orange peel perhaps? I'm very hesitant to throw this into my beer. I made the tea out of water instead of beer btw.

 
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Old 12-01-2011, 04:10 AM   #115
jmo88
 
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Sep 2008
Seattle
Posts: 1,380
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackbird
Ok, I just made the tea and I'm a little worried. First, it doesn't smell like Christmas to me. I can definitely smell the vanilla but very little cinnamon. Also, I get a faint armpit like vinegar smell. Is this from the bitter orange peel perhaps? I'm very hesitant to throw this into my beer. I made the tea out of water instead of beer btw.
I wouldn't put vinegar armpit in my beer. Where'd you get the orange peel?

Again, the nice part of the spice tea method is tasting what it'll be like in the end before committing. If you make a quart of tea and 5 gallons of beer, take a sample of beer and add enough tea to a tasting glass to make it a ratio of 20:1. You'll get an idea of what it'll be like. If you still get armpit, make another batch of tea with a different source of orange peel.
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Old 12-01-2011, 04:29 AM   #116
blackbird
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May 2010
Lubbock, Tx
Posts: 17

Ok i just finished bottling and tasted the combined product and it was FANTASTIC!!! I don't know what was causing the vinegar aroma but I can't detect it anymore. If something can be messed up cooking, just leave it to me. I am still curious though, as to why some people consider vanilla Christmasy? Most pumpkin pies I've tasted were dominated by cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger... Is it a regional thing? My mother actually tried a new recipe the other day for a pumpkin pie and it tasted like one of those vanilla tootsie roll things. Kinda reminds me of this spice addition. I thought it was a bit odd for a pumpkin pie though. Anyways, it does taste fantastic!!! I'll post a follow up after it's carbed and conditioned. Thanks jmo88

 
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Old 12-01-2011, 05:01 AM   #117
jmo88
 
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Sep 2008
Seattle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackbird
Ok i just finished bottling and tasted the combined product and it was FANTASTIC!!! I don't know what was causing the vinegar aroma but I can't detect it anymore. If something can be messed up cooking, just leave it to me. I am still curious though, as to why some people consider vanilla Christmasy? Most pumpkin pies I've tasted were dominated by cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger... Is it a regional thing? My mother actually tried a new recipe the other day for a pumpkin pie and it tasted like one of those vanilla tootsie roll things. Kinda reminds me of this spice addition. I thought it was a bit odd for a pumpkin pie though. Anyways, it does taste fantastic!!! I'll post a follow up after it's carbed and conditioned. Thanks jmo88
Good to hear! The holiday quality I was after was baked Christmas cookies, gingerbread, egg nog, bread pudding, cinnamon and orange spiced mulled wine, etc. I feel this spicing and this beer give the impression of those flavors an aromas. I definitely was intentionally avoiding typical pumpkin pie spices so as to separate the beer from traditional pumpkin ales.
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Old 12-01-2011, 05:22 AM   #118
blackbird
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May 2010
Lubbock, Tx
Posts: 17

Ah ok! I can definitely see baked Christmas cookies. I tasted a bit of the spiced tea after it had cooled and it was pretty awesome. I was worried when I tasted it hot, as it seemed bland aside from the strong vanilla aroma. I'm a bit embarrased now, as I don't know why I was expecting christmas spices to be similar to pumpkin pie. I guess pumpkin pies are more thanksgiving/fall.

 
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Old 12-01-2011, 10:52 AM   #119
d50erock
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Jun 2011
fitchburg, mass
Posts: 5

So I checked my Gravity the other night, tuesday, and looking good so far. It is down to 1.020 and seems to be fermenting still, though very slowly. I might take another reading tonight and see how it looks. I am amazed how high the alcahol % is already, 8.5%, was very happy

 
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Old 12-02-2011, 02:22 PM   #120
petercarrjones
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Oct 2010
Washington, DC
Posts: 23
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A lot of "warm" to this winter warmer!

 
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