Well, here's my notes from my first ever batch (it was a 5 gallon batch and I was shooting for an IPA):
6lbs sorghum extract
1lb rice syrup solids
Safale s-04 yeast
roasting: 1 hour @ 225 (no stir)
about an hour at 350 with stirring every 10 minutes until the color started to darken then every 5 after that.
1 gallon steep (for the quinoa) for 20 minutes (need more water, boiled under bag)
Added 1 gallon and strained original gallon (some quinoa kernels leaked through the muslin bag...they're really small!)
Temp up to 160 or so
Sorghum cans soaked in warm water (possible infiltrate from water in one jar)
Boil started and 3 oz (?) Of hops (cascade) added in muslin bag @ 15 into the boil minutes.
2.5 weeks in primary.
(very cold in the basement. I used a foam pad to insulate the carboy from the concrete floor. I think it was still too cold, but the carboy did not have a stick on thermometer)
about 1" yeast cake at the bottom and it was very firm
2 weeks in secondary with 3oz (I believe?) Amarillo hops added for dry hop
The Amarillo never completely settled, and there was about a 1/2 to 3/4 inch yeast cake at the bottom of the secondary.
Racked to bottling bucket with auto-siphon and 5oz of priming sugar added from LHBS.
Yield was 37 12 oz bottles and 1 double deuce.
I bottled it 8 days ago and just had my first one. With a very hard pour I got about 1.5 fingers of head although the bubbles were loose and big. I'll wait another week to try another and see how the carbonation is doing then.
The boiled hops were fresh from a buddy's garden and it adds a unique flavor that is just beautiful. The amarillo hops also added a very nice citrus flavor that I like a lot. However, they never did completely settle so it became a problem at bottling time and partly reduced my yield. I guess next time I will use a hop bag (the LHBS said I wouldn't need one).
The beer is very good I have to say for my first time out. It could be clearer (it was crystal friggen' clear before I added the dry hops) but the flavor and aroma are good. What is lacking is body.
Would adding more sorghum syrup help the body?
Any input to my process or recipe would be welcomed.
AND, Thanks for all the great posts and discussions here. I could never have done this without the hours of reading I did on this forum.
P.S. My biggest mistake was not getting hydrometer readings. I can't believe I didn't do that. I even had a hydrometer already.