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Old 06-10-2010, 02:37 PM   #1
ken914
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Default confusion after reading & asking too much

Good morning, all.

My original intent was to use the "crash course" recipe in Palmer's book, but the staff in the brew store steered me away from that. They said I needed to start simple.

On Monday, I started my first brew, a Coopers Australian Pale Ale. It's a pre-hopped mix.

The recipe can be found here: recipe. I don't think it could be more vague if someone tried.

The store that I shopped at didn't have the Brew Enhancer 2 called for in the recipe, but she did give me a 3 pound package of malt to use (of which I used ~2.2 pounds).

It's been bubbling away nicely in the plastic primary and the bubbling has slowed WAY down. In Palmer's book, he recommends about two weeks to bottling. However, I've been reading about racking into a second (glass) primary at some point.

Like most things that are art, there's more than one way to defur a feline. When I started, I hoped to just follow a single recipe to completion - now I'm out wandering in the wilderness.

Any input would be appreciated... and next time, I'm going to stick to my guns and my shopping list.


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Old 06-10-2010, 02:52 PM   #2
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Damn brew stores... they are hit and miss...
Well as far as your current batch, don't worry, it sounds like it's fine. The malt is better than the booster pack.

Did you boil the malt at all?

You can rack to a secondary to condition the beer before bottling, but it's not necessary... especially if you are not dry hopping your beer...


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Old 06-10-2010, 03:03 PM   #3
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Step 1: Relax! You're doing fine. Things are bubbling, which means that the yeast is happily doing what it knows how to do.

There is no particular need to rack to a secondary. You can if you want, but many find it to be an unneccessary complication. If you can, resist the urge to bottle and wait three weeks minimum.

Did you get a hydrometer with your kit? If not, you should pick one up. Make sure the gravity is done dropping before you bottle. It is also quite useful to get the starting gravity (S.G.) - knowledge is power after all. How else are you going to get the alcohol content?

In all likelyhood, you will end up with good beer at the end of the process. Still, it is best to regard it as a learning experience, laying the groundwork for future greatness. Things you read now, will make more sense when you read them again later with some experience under your belt.

Enjoy!
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:04 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeerJorge View Post
Damn brew stores... they are hit and miss...
Well as far as your current batch, don't worry, it sounds like it's fine. The malt is better than the booster pack.

Did you boil the malt at all?

You can rack to a secondary to condition the beer before bottling, but it's not necessary... especially if you are not dry hopping your beer...
Yessir... I boiled the water for the malt & the dry malt extract. Somehow, I didn't make the connection between the malt powder and malted milk balls until I opened the bag and smelled it! LOL
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:10 PM   #5
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i agree with no need to rack to secondary. some people like it, many dont. I say dont waste the time nor the (VERY slim) chance on infection from not being sanitary.
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:13 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by ken914 View Post
Yessir... I boiled the water for the malt & the dry malt extract. Somehow, I didn't make the connection between the malt powder and malted milk balls until I opened the bag and smelled it! LOL
LOL... love whoppers...
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:16 PM   #7
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Somehow, I didn't make the connection between the malt powder and malted milk balls until I opened the bag and smelled it! LOL
During prohibition the Coors brewery of Golden, Colorado, stayed open by making malted milk. They have a neat tour and a lot of history there, if anyone ever is near Denver and has an afternoon to spend.
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frazier View Post
Step 1: Relax! You're doing fine. Things are bubbling, which means that the yeast is happily doing what it knows how to do.

There is no particular need to rack to a secondary. You can if you want, but many find it to be an unneccessary complication. If you can, resist the urge to bottle and wait three weeks minimum.

Did you get a hydrometer with your kit? If not, you should pick one up. Make sure the gravity is done dropping before you bottle. It is also quite useful to get the starting gravity (S.G.) - knowledge is power after all. How else are you going to get the alcohol content?

In all likelyhood, you will end up with good beer at the end of the process. Still, it is best to regard it as a learning experience, laying the groundwork for future greatness. Things you read now, will make more sense when you read them again later with some experience under your belt.

Enjoy!
Good morning, Frazier!

Relax... got it. ;-)

I have a hydrometer from my wine making kit... in fact, a good part of my gear is scavenged from my wine stuff. I jotted down the SG when I started the process... it went into my notebook.

Thanks for the reassurances!
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Old 06-10-2010, 03:21 PM   #9
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Sounds like your brew got in to the fermenter OK so let's move on from there...

1. I'd keep the beer in the primary fermenter for 3-4 weeks, this allows for a clearer, more mature beer. The yeast get the chance to clean up any off-flavors they've created during active fermentation and the trub drops to the bottom of the fermenter to create a nice compact cake.

2. After that 3-4 weeks you can rack your beer to the bottling bucket (You've got one of those right?), and bulk prime your beer. You'll boil your priming sugar in around 1 cup of water for 10-15 minutes then siphon (not pour or dump) the beer on top of it creating a little whirlpool to mix it all together nicely.

3. Clean and sanitize all of your bottles then proceed to bottle and cap your beer. Put these in a warm location (70F is ideal) and allow them to carb up for 2-3 weeks, when you're ready to try one chill it for 48 hours in the fridge. This allows for the CO2 created by the yeast to drop back in to the beer and gives you a nicely carbonated beer to enjoy.

4. DECANT your beer in to a glass leaving the last 1/4" or so in the bottom of the bottle, that's yeast and it'll give you the farts like nothing else on this planet!

At least, that's what I'd do... ...
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Old 06-11-2010, 12:41 AM   #10
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It sounds like a plan... but can you describe the "then siphon (not pour or dump) the beer on top of it creating a little whirlpool to mix it all together nicely" a bit more?

thanks!


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