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Old 10-26-2012, 03:36 PM   #1
sime13w
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Default First brew anxiety

I have only seen my friend brew once. I have also read books and watched videos but i still feel nervous about brewing my first batch!

I bought my own equipment yesterday and an extract ingredient kit from Midwest. Is there anything to really be afraid of or should i just do it? There is this fear of during brew day of missing equipment or not sanitizing something correctly!

Any advice is greatly appreciated.


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Old 10-26-2012, 03:41 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by sime13w View Post
I have only seen my friend brew once. I have also read books and watched videos but i still feel nervous about brewing my first batch!

I bought my own equipment yesterday and an extract ingredient kit from Midwest. Is there anything to really be afraid of or should i just do it? There is this fear of during brew day of missing equipment or not sanitizing something correctly!

Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Just do it! Midwest kits have great instructions, so simply follow the instructions and be sanitary and you can't miss!

The only advice I have is to cool your wort after the boil cooler than you think you should. Bring it to 65 or so before adding the yeast (or even under), and keep the fermentation temperature under 70 degrees the whole time. I don't think the instructions have you cool the wort that much, but it makes a much better beer!


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Old 10-26-2012, 03:52 PM   #3
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Relax, It is not that difficult. Read the directions, read them again. Start your brew and read the directions. Continue brewing, sanitize everything that will touch the wort after the boil. Read the directions again. Finish the boil and make sure to cool the wort to pitching temperature before pitching the yeast.

Now wait. It may take a few days before you see fermentation.

Now wait some more.

Make sure fermentation is finished before the next step. If the directions say to transfer to secondary after 5-10 days you now have a choice you can make. Use a hydrometer for 2 readings 2 days apart. If they are the same you can 1) transfer to secondary, 2) bottle, 3) leave in primary for another 2-3 weeks then bottle. Many, including myself, feel this gives the yeast time to clean up and lets sediment fall out of solution.

After bottling wait some more. It will take about 3 weeks for the bottles to carbonate properly then another day or longer in the fridge.

This sounds intimidating but it is not as bad as it sounds. If you can cook from a recipe you can brew.

The hardest part most new brewers find is leaving the beer alone for the time it takes to ferment and then condition.

Enjoy.
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Old 10-26-2012, 03:59 PM   #4
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Your first-time anxiety will be an asset, as evidenced by your already proactive maneuver to seek some advice and flesh out the details. Seems to me like you'll pay close attention to what you're doing and knock it out of the park. Enjoy!
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:15 PM   #5
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When I started, I found it very helpful to watch videos on YouTube of experienced people walking through the steps. Just make sure the YouTuber is credible...you should be able to tell by the view count, amount of videos and feedback given.

Three most important things to remember (in this order)
1. SANITIZE
2. TEMPERATURE (agree with Yooper, keep it under 70 especially in the first 5 days of fermentation)
3. PATIENCE

Good luck and welcome to the madness
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:19 PM   #6
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WOW Thanks for the advice everyone.

Final question is about my water. Should i trust my clear tasteless water?
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:23 PM   #7
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I also think i will be having issues with getting a rolling boil with a electric stove.

Anyone been successful with an electric stove?
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Old 10-26-2012, 04:23 PM   #8
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WOW Thanks for the advice everyone.

Final question is about my water. Should i trust my clear tasteless water?
The water question depends on where you live. Are you using city water or well water?

It's a safer bet to use bottled spring water, but it's not at all necessary and it costs an extra $5 or so per batch.


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