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Old 04-18-2007, 12:27 PM   #1
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Default The AG Fantasy

So I've heard from everywhere that going AG will drastically imrove my beers. After getting my taxes back, I'm using my rebate to buy my AG equiptment. It's hopefully in the mail as we speak. or type. Working the night shift tonight stocking shelves, I spent most of my time day dreaming about how great my beer will be. But really... will it improve that much? What are the actual tangible aspects you can point to? I understand I will have a great deal more control over flavors and body and such, but will the overall taste really improve? How-so? Have you seen this in your own beer?

Forgive my post-nightshift ramblings. I just spend all night fantasizing and I'm curious how close to reality it might turn out to be...

Samuel Waterston Beer Co.
Allston, MA

Thinking About: Strawberries and Cream Ale

Primary Fermenter: Nuthin...

Secondary Fermenter:"C-4 IPA!", American Wheat

Conditioning: 4 C's IPA

Drinkin': 4 C's American Pale Ale
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Old 04-18-2007, 12:34 PM   #2
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You're in for a ride.

You will most certainly notice higher consistency, brighter/cleaner flavors, better head...etc...etc. And you are now stepping into a realm where you have so much more control. You probably won't notice or realize how much more control until you get a few AG batches done and tasted, but then it will really click.


Oh and make sure you have lots of headspace on your boil kettle because you will have tons of hot break, which is something you may have only minimally experienced with extracts.

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Brew what you like. Do this, and you will find your inner brewer.
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Old 04-18-2007, 12:38 PM   #3
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The main thing I noticed was that my beers stopped tasting, well, extract-y. They didn't carmelize and tasted fresher, like fresh grains. And don't dismiss the "body thing". Huge difference- some beers you want "thicker" but not all of them.

Another thing, I'm now wild about maris otter malt. That's going to be my main base malt, unless I want something else- try that with an extract! I am still going to do some extract or PM recipes sometimes, I think. But I do taste a real difference in the AG.
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Old 04-18-2007, 12:48 PM   #4
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Basically, it takes more practice to brew from scratch and get it just right but when you finally get your process and recipe down it's like the difference between the Duncan Hines box and your Grandma's chocolate cake.

Up Next: Belgian Dubbel, English Pale Ale
Fermenter 1: Blonde Ale Experiment 1 | Fermenter 2: Blonde Ale Experiment 2 | Fermenter 3: Northern English Brown | Fermenter 4: Nothing
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Old 04-18-2007, 12:49 PM   #5
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it always reminded me of Orange Juice....Why buy from concentrate if you can make fresh squeezed?
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Old 04-18-2007, 12:53 PM   #6
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I don't know how good your extract brews are, I only did about 5 or 6 before I went AG. Mine were drinkable, but still pretty mediocre, I see some nice looking names in your signature though.
I am going to tell you that my beers will stand neck to neck with the best craft brews and Euro imports that money can buy!
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Old 04-18-2007, 01:09 PM   #7
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It's just more enjoyable, I think, to do AG. You aren't limited in any way as to what malts you can use, or how much control you have over the process. It's a lot more involved, but it's a good kind of involved.

If you love making beer, you will REALLY love making AG beer. I can't think of a single person who has ever regretted making the leap.
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Old 04-18-2007, 01:19 PM   #8
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I have not tasted my fisrt all grain yet, but i like more involvement in my beers. Its not so much dump in the extract stir it cool add water. You get to see the whole process start from scratch and thats great. It takes more time but thats what i was looking for. PLus you get the chance to build your own equipment and own methods. Its also cheaper per batch so its more justifiable to go out and buy some ingredients becasue generaaaly all you need is a 20 dollar bill. Although you will spend alot more on equipment. I thought i could do it for under a hundred dollars buy i have been buying stuff twice a week every week, thermometers, ball valves...gotta get an oxygenation system soon too! IM sure the beer will taste great, but i reaaly like the increased involvement.
primaries: BRown Ale
secondaries: Rye IPA
Bottled: IPA, Pigs ear brown clone, stovepipe porter, German Alt, Oktober fest ale, Smoked IPA, failed pale ale, 1st AG ESB, belgian wit, Ipa#2, , Lake wheat, fish Red ale, Smoked wheat,
KEGS: blonde Nugs , Sugar pale light, chin nook ale (gone in 1 week)
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Old 04-18-2007, 06:38 PM   #9
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Lessee, If my LHBS has 30 kinds of Malt, 30 kinds of Hops, and 30 kinds of yeast. And I use 4 different kinds of malt, 2 hops, and one yeast in an AG recipe, that gives me 27,000 different recipes- without accounting for varying the proprtions. At 35 cents per bottle.
So far, I've had more experience thinking than I've had don't think they are mutually exclusive, do you?

72 batches so far,
48 wine, mostly Loquat, peach, plum, prickly pear
23 beers and ciders
1 sauerkraut
1 Tequila, from a prickly pear wine experiment that didn't work. I call it "Prickly Heat"
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Old 04-18-2007, 06:43 PM   #10
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The truth? Your beer is going to be so amazing you will have people knocking down your door to scrub your bottles so they can have a try.

Before I learned to brew I was poor, sober and lonely. Now I am just poor.
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