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Old 07-28-2007, 09:52 PM   #1
Jul 2007
Buffalo, NY
Posts: 40

Hey guys. I just got done brewing my first ever batch about 5 hours ago, and we have fermentation! Pretty cool feeling knowing I didn't screw up too badly (yet).

But I do have some noob questions.

I followed my kit's directions, which basically told me:

-boil water
-add extracts
-stir like crazy
-boil for 10 minutes
-add to cold water in fermenting bucket
-add yeast
-cover for 10 minutes
-stir in yeast

Simple. I scooped up a book afterwards though (Papazian's by the way), and it said I should have let the water cool down before adding the yeast.

I didn't check the temperature when I stirred in my yeast, but I know it was warmer than the 60-65 degrees recommended. Will this hurt my beer?

Also, I didn't take any initial gravity readings, because again, I just followed the quick-start directions. When should I take my gravity readings in the future?

And finally, HOPS. I'm a hop-head. No question about it. Give me a hoppy IPA and I'm happy as a clam. My kit contained no extra hops. Just my 3 lb. can of hop malt extract (liquid), and a 2 lb. bag of dry malted extract. What is the key to getting a strong hop flavor and aroma? Do I boil them in with my extracts, or do you add them during fermentation?

Sorry for the rant! Thanks in advance!

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Old 07-28-2007, 09:59 PM   #2
EdWort's Avatar
Jul 2006
Bee Cave, Texas
Posts: 11,912
Liked 348 Times on 170 Posts

Congrats! Welcome the club, The Home Brew Club. You will want to add hop pellets to your next batch if you want hoppy beers. Look in the recipe section for an extract IPA. You'll want some steeping grains.

Here's a link to AHA Stone IPA Clone kit. It's awesome!

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Old 07-28-2007, 10:06 PM   #3
Jul 2007
Posts: 90

I will reply with the best of my knowledge but I am sure that others will chime in with more info.

If you put in your yeast when the wort is too hot then you can shock them or even kill them. Since you have some bubbling that means you didn't kill the yeast and things should be fine on that regard.

You usually want to check the specific gravity right before you pitch (put in the wort) the yeast. Then in a week or so the fermentation should be complete and you can take another reading. When the readings are consistent for a couple of days it means that it is done fermenting. Although this does not mean that it is ready to go to the secondary or to bottles. Many people suggest keeping it in the primary for longer than it says in the kit directions. Even after the yeast is done working on the easy sugars it will still continue to eat the more complex sugars.

If you want a hoppy flavor then you need to add hops...duh. When you add the hops to the boiling wort depends on what they will do. If you add them early then they add to the flavor while many times you will add some finishing hops in the last 5 minutes just for aroma or aftertaste ect.

I would suggest going to your local brew store and getting a pale ale or and IPA kit for your next batch if you want something with more hoppy flavor.

Oh, and don't worry about the rant, people here are extremely nice and helpful.
Lakewood OH

Primary- Witch's Brew Hefe
Primary-le cry, tis empty
Drinking Scotch Ale, Continental Pilsner, Edworts Apfelwein

Total Brews-4

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Old 07-28-2007, 10:14 PM   #4
Jul 2007
Buffalo, NY
Posts: 40

Thank you guys for the quick response! And Ed, thank you for the Stone link! Stone is probably one of my top 3 breweries, if not the top, at the moment. RUINATION FTW!!!

Well, my first kit was an IPA kit. So hopefully it doesn't disappoint.

Thanks again guys.

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